Olympic curler, museum bobbler
Team USA’s curling squad that came to be affectionately known as “The Rejects” now have their own misfit toy.
Last month in South Korea, the four-man U.S. curling team of John Shuster, Tyler George, John Landsteiner and Matt Hamilton became famous here at home and across the globe for their improbable run to the United States’ first-ever Olympic curling gold medal.
Along the way, with every win to advance closer to glory, the squad led by skip John Shuster became one of the preeminent darlings for American Olympic fans. Darlings in the sense that many Americans could identify with the Average Joe-looking team, one that embraced who they were, a self-described “group of scrappy regular guys from Middle America.”
A month later their golden effort will be immortalized by a token sports memento: the bobblehead.
Earlier this month, the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum officially made the first curling bobblehead ever produced. It features Team Shuster Olympic gold medalist Matt Hamilton — the 29-year-old curling sweeper who works as a technician for a consumer products company off the ice. He’s a man who became famous during the Olympics for his mustache and enthusiastic celebrations.
“We were so proud of Matt and Team Shuster’s gold medal performance at the Olympics, so we reached out to Matt on Twitter right after the Closing Ceremony to pitch the bobblehead idea,” said Phil Sklar, the co-Founder and CEO of the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum.
“He loved it,” Sklar continued, “and we had a rendering for him the next day. We’re thrilled to be able to honor Matt with a bobblehead and give his fans and fans of the team a great memento of their miraculous achievement.”
The limited edition bobblehead is now available for preorder exclusively at the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum’s online store at a cost of $25, plus a flat-rate shipping charge of $8 per order. They are expected to arrive in June, and each bobblehead will be individually numbered and come in a collector’s box.
During the 2018 Pyeongchang Games, the Madison, Wisconsin-native also competed with his sister, Becca, in the debut mixed-doubles event at an Olympics.
The bobbleheads, which are being produced by the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum, are not endorsed by or affiliated with Team USA or the Olympics.
The National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum was launched in November 2014, and the hall of fame and museum hosted a preview exhibit in 2016. But it is still currently planning a permanent location, which they hope to open later this year, perhaps as soon as this spring.
The hall of fame and museum also produces customized bobbleheads for organizations, individuals and teams across the country, and can be found at BobbleheadHall.com, and at Facebook.com/BobbleheadHall or Twitter.com/BobbleheadHall.
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