San Dieguito foundation seeks support to repair aging mascot

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San Dieguito High School Academy’s aging Metal Mustang mascot is pictured March 3 before being transported to Baker Ironworks for restoration. (SDA Foundation photo)

North Coast Current

A fundraising campaign is underway to preserve a San Dieguito High School Academy icon.

The San Dieguito Academy Foundation put the word out March 3 that the Encinitas campus’s aging Metal Mustang mascot is in need of restoration.

Baker Ironworks of Solana Beach, owned by San Dieguito Class of 1961 member Susan Bruun, has taken on the challenge of repairing the sign. The foundation seeks donors to help cover the costs.

The mascot stood on a tall post at the front of the school since the early 1980s until renovation of the school’s athletic field. Since its removal, the sign has fallen into further disrepair, according to the foundation’s announcement.

San Dieguito Academy Plant Supervisor Gabe Figueroa prepares the Metal Mustang for transport to Baker Ironworks on March 3. (SDA Foundation photo)
San Dieguito Academy Plant Supervisor Gabe Figueroa prepares the Metal Mustang for transport to Baker Ironworks on March 3. (SDA Foundation photo)

“Our Metal Mustang was created by Susan De Forest (’81) and stood by the field for over 30 years — until it had to be removed when our track was renovated,” the foundation stated. “It was placed in the ‘Art Yard’ on campus, which was when we realized how much repair it actually needed.”

The foundation noted in its description and photos that the mascot is significantly rusted, bent and dented — more repair work than the high school’s metal shop can accommodate.

“We asked our Metals teacher, Jason Berend, if he could fix it. He determined that it needed sandblasting or chemical stripping prior torch work, and let us know that the school’s sandblaster is too small and the chemicals involved in paint stripping would be too hazardous for students,” the foundation stated.

That’s when the nonprofit organization looked to Baker Ironworks for help.

The foundation said it’s trying to preserve as many landmarks, time capsules and other memorabilia as possible as the campus undergoes significant construction. Already, according to the foundation’s website, the campus has lost time capsules that were destroyed in campus construction. On March 2, the foundation reported the discovery of an unmarked time capsule uncovered in the latest phase of construction.

Residents interested in contributing to the fundraising campaign can make a tax-deductible donation online at sdafoundation.com/alumni/2016/03/03/metal-mustang-to-be-repaired-by-alumna-susan-bruun-61/.

More information about the foundation and its activities is also available online at sdafoundation.com/.