Open House 2014: Children Meet The Chimps

Open House 2014: Children Meet The Chimps

At our annual Open House / Hootenanny visitors arrived with many questions about the chimpanzee residents of Chimps Inc. I had the opportunity to talk a lot about chimpanzees in captivity and to dispel many myths. Truly though, the most inspiring and enjoyable visitors were the children.

The children who came to visit the chimps on Saturday brought some amazing and intelligent questions with them. Some of them even came prepared with a written list of questions prepared! With an eagerness to learn they did not hesitate to ask every question that popped into their minds. “Is that Patti? How old is she?” “What is Emma’s favorite thing to do?” “How do they climb so fast?” “What are their favorite things to eat?” “How do the Chimps brush their teeth?” “How do you give a chimp a check-up?”

Even better than the questions though, were their responses to the answers. Clearly soaking in the answers I heard sentiments such as “Wow…they are so smart!” Towards the end of the day I overheard children correcting their parents, “No Mom, they’re not monkeys…chimps are apes!”

Their enthusiasm was infectious. Many carried a paper with the names of each chimp next to their photo and made sure that they met each and every one and learned all that they could about their individual likes and dislikes. Some talked about wanting to work with animals when they grew up and all were thrilled to learn that their was an enrichment table where they could make treats such as cheerio necklaces for the chimps. It was obvious that a lot of love and effort went in to each piece of enrichment and picture drawn for the chimps.

It was heartwarming to meet kids with such passion, insight, and respect for animals as such a young age.

If you missed this year’s Open House / Hootenanny or would like to come back next year you can stay up to date with our events on our website or by following us on Facebook



Kaleigh, Volunteer