The fabulous Fiona of the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens turned 4 on January 24th. To celebrate, the zoo organized a unique fundraising campaign where the winners could get to know the cheeky hippopotamus in person.
Float4Fiona is a floating fruit race where people bought a numbered apple that was placed in Fiona and Bibi’s habitat in Hippo Cove.
After that, those hundreds of apples crept very slowly to the finish line.
The owner of the winning apple and three guests get to know Fiona – “the apple of all eyes” – personally. Several names were assigned to each apple number.
The first place winners were Erin Centner, Debbie Garcia, Margaret Larkey, Joseph Mckissock and Joanna Myers.
“Since we can’t invite people to a big old party for Fiona this year, we’re going to hold the race before the zoo opens on her birthday, January 24th, and share it live on Facebook for people everywhere to enjoy theirs Seeing the apple and being able to hope ends first, ”said Thane Maynard, director of the Cincinnati Zoo, in a press release. “If you win and are unable to meet Fiona in person, you can opt for private video chat and bespoke hippo kiss painting.”
The owners of apples two, three and four receive a special limited edition Fiona kiss print.
Check out the video on Facebook.com/cincinnatizoo.
| Photos by Francisco Huerta