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Pennsylvania’s Konkrete Kids pay tribute to a powerful force in building history

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

Of all states, few have more potential tie-ins to a variety of mascot inspirations than Pennsylvania. The state with the Liberty Bell has revolutionary history, the steel belt and even Punxsutawney Phil. And the country's biggest chocolate factory.

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Northampton fans take supporting the Konkrete Kids very seriously — LehighValleyLive

Northampton fans take supporting the Konkrete Kids very seriously — LehighValleyLive

In short, if you're looking for an interesting mascot, Pennsylvania can give you a reason for it to exist.

As it turns out, local history in a variety of different forms wins out, never more notably than with the state's best mascot.

The Northampton (Pa.) High sports teams are the Konkrete Kids. If the incorrect K is frustrating for those who are particular about correct language, it was motivated by one of the nation's most important infrastructure providers.

Throughout much of the 20th century, Atlas Portland Cement Company was one of the larger global distributors of cement, the material that transformed construction both in the U.S. and abroad. Eventually, globalization got the best of Atlas Portland, as it did many other firms, but the company never lost its grip on Northampton's town history.

Now, that legacy is maintained most prominently by the Konkrete Kids, who take the field every week in tribute to the company in football mad Pennsylvania.

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Mascot Quest 2013 — Flickr

Other Great Pennsylvania Mascots of Note:

Williamsport is now best known for being the home of the Little League World Series, but at one point the town was considered the epicenter of the lumber universe. As naturally occurs in such a locale, a stunning number of natural resource oligarchs called the town home, giving birth to Williamsport's "Millionaire Row" and a sense of optimism that it could eventually be among Pennsylvania's largest cities. That never happened, but by the time the city opened up a high school, the Millionaires served as a perfect nickname for the school's sports teams.

What do you do when you're a town called Mars? You name your high school sports team the Fightin' Planets. Simple, perfect. Well done, Mars.

The North East (Pa.) High football team plays as the Grape Pickers, which may not seem intimidating, but does in fact speak to the town's unique agricultural role. In fact, grapes are so prominent in North East that vineyards literally surround the school. According to USA Today, there are five very large wineries in North East, not to mention Welch's grape products factory. All of that just goes to say that even if North East didn't play as the Grape Pickers, they would still be Grape Pickers. Might as well own it.

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