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Cora, Finn, or Phoebe? Those are the choices for the Tampa International Airport flamingo's name

Flamingo at Tampa airport
Carl Lisciandrello
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WUSF Public Media
Voters can pick between three finalist names — Cora, Finn, or Phoebe — for the 21-foot tall flamingo installed last year at Tampa International Airport.

The three finalists to name the giant art piece were chosen from more than 65,000 entries. Voters can make their pick before 11:59 p.m. Monday.

The 21-foot tall pink flamingo that graces the terminal at Tampa International Airport will soon have a name, thanks to a public voting campaign that wraps up Monday night.

Voters can choose between Cora, Finn, or Phoebe, the three finalists picked from more than 65,000 entries submitted worldwide.

A panel of six Hillsborough County Aviation Authority with ties to the sculpture, along with Matthew Mazzotta, the artist who created the flamingo, chose the names. The group met three times over a number of weeks to pick their favorites.

"In my job, I’m often stationed at the Information Desk, right next to the flamingo," said guest experience representative Janet Zambito, one of the judges. "One of my primary responsibilities is giving tours of the Airport, and a highlight – especially for kids – is seeing this piece. I was so honored to be a part of the process to give it a nickname and look forward to seeing which name the public decides on from the three we selected."

Tampa International released the names of the three finalists, along with the rationale for their suggestions:

Giant sculpture of flamingo head next to an equally large blank name tag
Tampa International Airport
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The 21-foot-tall art installment depicts a flamingo dipping its head underwater.

  • Phoebe - Submitted by James M.: "A play on Phoenicopterus – the flamingo’s scientific name ‘Phoebe’ is also a playful alliterative to flamingo and means brilliantly inquisitive. The overall ‘Home’ sculpture is literally brilliant and reveals the flamingo’s inquisitiveness as it hunts for food in the shallows."
  • Cora - Submitted by Glorianne P.: "Because the official name of the art piece is ‘Home’, we can expand on that and consider the phrase ‘Home is Where the Heart is.’ Cora is short for Corazon, which translates to heart in Spanish."
  • Finn - Submitted by Braxton W.: "Finn the flamingo has the perfect ring to it. Every time I see a flamingo, it looks like they have fins on their feet that they forgot to take off. It always makes me laugh."

The public can make their choice at NameTheFlamingo.com before 11:59 p.m. Monday, Jan. 2.

The person whose name is selected will receive a prize package that includes:

  • 4 nonstop, roundtrip tickets for themselves and 3 companions on Silver Airways
  • A VIP Experience package to Busch Gardens, including 4 single-day admission tickets, 4 All Day-Dining passes, 4 Quick Queue Unlimited passes, and preferred parking
  • A chance to bask in the limelight at a reveal event for the new name in TPA’s Main Terminal

And, of course, the unique pride of naming a giant flamingo in one of the country's busiest airports.

Mark Schreiner is the assistant news director and intern coordinator for WUSF News.
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