The baby name Kelce has been picking up steam lately — particularly in Pennsylvania and Missouri:
- 2020: 21 baby girls named Kelce
- 8 born in Missouri
- 2019: 10 baby girls named Kelce
- 2018: 21 baby girls named Kelce
- 6 born in Missouri, 5 born in Pennsylvania
- 2017: 10 baby girls named Kelce
- 2016: 5 baby girls named Kelce
- 2015: unlisted
- 2014: unlisted
Not only that, but it started popping up in the boys’ data just a couple of years ago:
- 2020: 9 baby boys named Kelce
- 2019: 10 baby boys named Kelce [debut]
- 2018: unlisted
- 2017: unlisted
Why all this recent interest?
Because of NFL brothers Jason and Travis Kelce (KEL-see).
Older brother Jason Kelce has played football for the Philadelphia Eagles since 2011. He won Super Bowl LII with the team in early 2018.
Younger Travis Kelce has played football for the Kansas City Chiefs since 2013. He won Super Bowl LIV with the team in early 2020. In fact, he caught one of the game’s touchdown passes.
Though the brothers have always pronounced their surname KEL-see, the surname is actually supposed to be pronounced kelse (rhymes with “else”). Here’s how Jason explained the pronunciation discrepancy:
[W]e have a really small family, we don’t have any first cousins. Somehow we got so disconnected [from the Kelce side the family] and my dad at some point, when he was working at the steel mill in Cleveland, Ohio, got tired of correcting everyone who was calling him ‘Kel-see.’
So my dad, out of pure laziness, completely changed his last name. For some reason he decided to change it and that’s what we’ve gone by our whole lives.
What are your thoughts on the baby name Kelce? (Do you like this spelling, or would you prefer something less ambiguous, like “Kelsey”?)
Update, 1/31/2023: Last weekend, the Philadelphia Eagles won the NFC Championship and the Kansas City Chiefs won the AFC Championship — so, not only are Jason and Travis are both going back to the Super Bowl, but “Donna Kelce will officially become the first mother to have two sons play against each other in the Super Bowl” (according to a tweet by the Pro Football Hall of Fame). I don’t know what year Donna was born, but I wonder if it wasn’t 1959, the year the name Donna saw peak usage thanks to a song…
Sources: Travis Kelce – Wikipedia, Jason Kelce – Wikipedia, How do Jason Kelce and Travis Kelce pronounce their last name? Jason reveals the true answer
Image: © 2017 Ed Zurga/AP
One thought on “What gave the baby name Kelce a boost?”
Just learned via Abby’s Sunday Summary that the Netflix series Outer Banks (2020-) features a recurring male character named Kelce (single-syllable pronunciation).