ROGERS PARK — Most Loyola fans can’t join Sister Jean in Indianapolis to watch the Ramblers’ in the March Madness tournament, but they can buy a bobblehead of the beloved basketball team chaplain.
The National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum on Wednesday unveiled its new Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt bobblehead. It’s on sale just in time for Loyola’s run in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament — and comes one day after Sister Jean was given the OK to travel to Indianapolis to watch the Ramblers on Friday.
The 2018 version of the Sister Jean bobblehead was the best-selling item in the Bobblehead Museum’s history until April 2020, when it was surpassed by a Dr. Anthony Fauci bobblehead.
In fact, a second run of the 2018 bobblehead was needed because of the item’s popularity during Loyola’s Final Four appearance that year, according to the Milwaukee-based Bobblehead Museum.
The old version of the Sister Jean bobblehead sold out this week, so the Bobblehead Museum has unveiled a 2021 version that is officially licensed by Loyola University.
The item sells for $25 with an $8 shipping fee and is available through the museum’s online gift shop. The bobbleheads are expected to be shipped in July.
Sister Jean became a beloved national figure during the Ramblers’ 2018 run in the tournament, which ended in the Final Four. The 101-year-old nun was originally kept from traveling to this year’s tournament in Indianapolis because of coronavirus protocols, but that decision was reversed Tuesday. She will be in attendance for Loyola’s game against Georgia Tech Friday.
“I am excited to watch my beloved Ramblers in-person in Indy,” Sister Jean said in a statement. “May this March Madness provide our country with great joy and may our Ramblers and other basketball athletes experience the thrill of the game during this tournament.”
A portion of the sales of Sister Jean’s bobblehead benefit Sister Jean’s religious order, the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, as well as Loyola University’s Athletic Department.
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