Mascot Performer and Handler

Position: Mascot Performer and Handler

Your application will be considered as openings become available.

Schedule:  As needed, typical shifts are 2-4 hours in length
Starting Wage:  $10.00 per hour
Start Date:  Applications are taken year round and held on file for six months.

DEFINITION:  Under the direction of the Youth Services Manager, this employee will perform as Smyles, the library mascot, and/or ensure the safety of Smyles as his handler. Training and orientation must be completed prior to event.


  • Initiate interaction, greet and engage with young event participants and their families
  • Be animated with a crowd of people (i.e. wave, feign laughter, etc.)
  • Be comfortable with larger groups
  • Pose for or take pictures
  • Help carry the Smyles costume
  • Assist Smyles into the costume
  • Remain quiet while in the Smyles costume (Smyles does not talk!)
  • Ensure Smyles' safety by engaging children in constructive ways to interact with Smyles such as high-fives and hugs (not tail-pulling)
  • Direct Smyles:  where to walk, when children approach, etc.
  • Duties specific to event:  during Project Smyles visits, hand books to Smyles and interact with children using puppets and puzzles
  • Answer questions directed to Smyles (Smyles does not talk!)
  • Maintain the Smyles mystique….Smyles is definitely real to children!

Each employee is expected to continually strive to bring shared values to life through our Excellence Through People organizational culture. ETP values include: committing to continuous improvement, inspiring creativity and innovation, being customer driven, making data-driven decisions, championing employee involvement, striving for excellence, having fiscal stewardship, acting with honesty and integrity, exhibiting leadership, choosing a positive attitude, respecting one another, promoting safety and wellness, and cultivating teamwork.  For leaders, this includes creating a work culture that brings these values to life.  For all employees, this includes maintaining a Total City Perspective.  The purpose of ETP is to deliver exceptional services to the public at the best price, and for employees to experience an enjoyable and stimulating work environment.


Vision Requirements:  Minimum standard for use with those whose work deals largely with performing, guiding others who are unable to see on their own, interacting with an audience, communicating with an audience and each other.

Physical and Environmental Conditions:  The employee will perform bending, lifting, and pushing; will perform at events both outside and inside; will not be substantially exposed to adverse environmental conditions but may, while in the costume, be exposed to higher levels of temperature.

This position works with the public and is expected to attend to hygiene and health emergencies.


Education and Experience: High school diploma or GED. Preference may be given to those with library and/or performance experience.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

Knowledge of: reading and reacting to people’s body language, differentiation of library collections and formats; library policies, practices and procedures.

Skill in: customer service; oral communication; creative problem solving; critical thinking and decision-making.

Ability to: work independently and as part of a team; work with a sense of urgency, tact and sense of humor; adapt to change; assess and prioritize multiple tasks; communicate effectively with other library staff, volunteers and customers; understand and follow verbal and written instructions; handle challenging situations and people; demonstrate professionalism and positive attitude; tolerate ambiguity.

Equipment used on the Job: Camera and printer

This job description does not include every duty or responsibility that a person in the role may be asked to perform.  Employee may be required to perform other related duties as assigned.

Application Procedure

All applicants must electronically submit:

  • a completed City of Ames Employment Application (link below), 
  • cover letter, and
  • three references to be considered for the position.

Please e-mail the application materials to For more information, you may e-mail or call (515) 239-5631. 

Ames Public Library is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. Women, minorities, and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.