By Cliff Radel
The Cincinnati Enquirer
Got a sausage suit, a cheese coat or a fruit basket fedora? Findlay Market wants you.
Merchants at the Over-the-Rhine institution need a mascot to help kick off Monday's 85th annual Findlay Market Opening Day Parade at 11:30 a.m. They're holding a contest at noon Saturday at the market's bell tower to choose the best costumed applicant as the parade mascot.
Costumes can fall into three themes: Findlay Market, baseball and Opening Day.
First prize: Four tickets to Monday's season-opening game between the Reds and the Cubs, plus a convertible ride in the parade.
Second prize: Four tickets to a regular-season Reds game.
Contest entries are available at the market's stands and its Web site (www.findlaymarket.org) .
"We're using this contest to call attention to our little market and our parade," said parade chairman Neil Luken.
Luken dreamed up the mascot contest after the success of last year's Opening Day Pete Rose look-alike showdown.
The 2003 contest attracted national news attention and 15 contestants swearing they never bet on baseball.
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