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Justin Jolley
Justin Jolley

Lake Elsinore's Thunder: It's What The Storm is All About

There's a very special dog who lives in a community east of Los Angeles called Lake Elsinore. He is one of only a few members of the genus Canis Thunderous family. He is generally known for his ability to stand upright, walk on the tops of chairs, dance, drive quads, and act like a fool, much to the delight of Storm fans, who fill the stadium with uproarious laughter every time he makes an appearance. "Thunder," as he is known, can further be noted for his thick coat of mint-green fur, oversized eyes, bright pink nose, and one of the largest pairs of shoes to ever grace the feet of a dog. And if anyone should wonder about his capacity to put away the food, all they would need to do is to check the size of his overabundant belly.

Thunder is the alter ego of the team's director of mascot operations, Stephen Webster, who started working for the team several years ago after he worked for other teams in Utah, where he originally resided.

"I belong to the LDS church, and after I finished school and did my mission, I got a job working for a team in Utah," Webster explained. "It was great fun, and that's when I discovered that I loved working in baseball, especially from the promotional perspective."

It doesn't take long to watch Webster in action before he could convince anyone of his love for the game. Like many good mascots, he is in perpetual motion, whether he's on the field or off. Not only does he appear as Thunder at every game, but he makes more than 300 appearances at local birthday parties, holiday parades, grand openings, school assemblies, and many other events.

Wherever he is and whatever he is doing, Thunder admits that his greatest accomplishment thus far is the publication of his book, "Be Nice, Play Nice! CHARACTER COUNTS! You Know," which he distributes wherever he goes. Thunder also sponsors the Storm Reading for Rewards assembly, where he shares the importance of the Six Pillars of Character to more than 45,000 children in 15 cities and 60 elementary schools this year.

"I love doing this," Webster said, "and I'll do it as long as I can."

Photo provided by Thunder's Facebook page you can "Like" his page by Clicking Here




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