Perky’s Story (Archived)


Perky the Rat – the Sunny Southeast Region’s Mascot

Meet Perky, the Sunny Southeast Region’s loveable rat mascot! Here you can follow Perky’s travels and adventures, or scroll down to read her fascinating history. Do you have photos of Perky to share on this page? Please e-mail them to the webmaster!

Click here to read about Perky’s 2017 makeover and her life as an Eastern Wood Rat.

Perky the Rat

NAI Region 3 Ambassador


During the 2002 National Interpreters Workshop at Virginia Beach, Regional Deputy Director Mike Adams began a campaign among the Sunny Southeast Region’s members to “take the chicken” in the Scholarship Live Auction. At the membership meeting about $200 was chipped in to try and out bid Region 4 for the annual auction of the rubber chicken.

At the Interpretive Media Awards ceremony that week, the Pirates Royale, provided entertainment. They were great! and this rowdy slightly off-color group of pirates about four 18” high rubber rats sitting on their speakers. They introduced one of them as Perky. Yes, Perky is female and a pirate. Since the pirates had been such a hit, after the performance Lynda Doucette asked the group’s leader if they would donate Perky (she was the cutest of the four) to the live auction and they agreed. Here is Perky performing onstage.

When the Sunny Southeast Region gathered for the auction, Perky was in the line-up of items after the rubber chicken. The Region’s Director Sue Bennett had the brain storm of bidding on Perky if we weren’t successful in getting the chicken. Her idea was to use Perky as a “ flat Stanley” type mascot, that we could mailed around to Region 3 members who would take pictures at their site and build a scrap book of her travels. All present agreed.

Well, we were easily out bid that night when the chicken went for over $600 and although there was some interest in Perky, we got her for about $150.

Since that time Perky has been shared by members through-out the region. In the Sparks workshop we lost control of Perky when she was put in the auction and NAI Vice President Vern Fish got her. Vern apparently got attached to Perky (this often happens) and wasn’t going to put her back in the auction at the Grand Rapids workshop, but we insisted and won her back. Perky was instrumental in the Mobile Workshop, then was kidnapped from the Region’s booth in Albuquerque. After a year with the Rodent Liberation Front Perky was returned to the Sunny Southeast Region. She now goes nowhere without a bodyguard.

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