Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

Top Stories

July 22, 2013

Here ... the wild things are

Wildlife education program brings exotic animals to Boyce Ditto library


It’s not every day you see an Argentine Red Tegu or an Eastern Swamp Wallaby in Mineral Wells. But kids in Boyce Ditto Public Library’s summer reading program got a special treat on Friday morning.

Zooniversity, a Dallas-based exotic animal rescue program with traveling educational shows, visited the library with six unusual animals – “teachers” for kids and their families to see and learn about.

Zooniversity owner and wildlife educator Allison Blankenship traveled about 67 miles from Grand Prairie with a Tailless Whip Scorpion, a Brazilian Short Tail Possum, a Ball Python, a Groundhog, an Argentine Red Tegu monitor lizard and a young Eastern Swamp Wallaby named “Tilly.”

“We have now over 100 animals – over 50 different species – and they all have stories about how they came to us,” Blankenship said. “They’re either orphaned, injured or former pets that have been surrendered to us. What we do to raise money to pay for our staff and all the vet and food bills is we travel all around Texas doing educational shows. We go to schools, churches, libraries, private events and teach people about wildlife.”

Blankenship, who founded Zooniversity in 2001, taught those in attendance all kinds of fun facts about the animals. She explained how the Whip Tail Scorpion defends itself by flicking vinegar out of its tail and how baby wallabies and kangaroos spend the first two days of life climbing up their mothers’ stomachs and into the safety of her pouch. Kids got to learn this and more, all while getting an up-close and personal look at these animals.

Blankenship said Boyce Ditto is one of 72 libraries her program will visit this summer alone. Youth Librarian Chasity Hull was the one who made sure that Mineral Wells would be on Zooniversity’s list of 2013 destinations.

Text Only
Top Stories
  • Becky McDonald and Spot.jpg NO KILL ZONE: Animal shelter working with Humane Society to end euthanasias

    About mid-morning one day at the Mineral Wells Animal Shelter, Becky McDonald, shelter coordinator, makes some time to check phone messages. When she plays it back, it's a request for the shelter to pick up some apparently abandoned kittens.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Terry Jay Williams.jpg A stunning arrest

    After a brief scuffle Sunday morning, a Mineral Wells police officer stunned and arrested a man allegedly caught in the act of burglarizing a home.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • p-4.php.jpeg 'The Blessings of Liberty'

    An exhibit, “The Blessings of Liberty,” is now open for viewing at the Palo Pinto County Old Jail Museum and will be available through Aug. 2. It is provided and organized by Humanities Texas, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. A community grant from Humanities to the Museum paid for the exhibit. This is the third year outright grants have been awarded to the museum.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • SD Presentation 13.jpg Weatherford's ICI awarded new Lamar construction contract

    With construction on the new Lamar Elementary School expected to begin in two about weeks, the Mineral Wells ISD school board on Monday approved Weatherford-based Imperial Construction Inc. as the project's general contractor.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo 1 Link

  • JROTC.jpg Uniform success

    In another year or so, Mineral Wells High School students might have a new organization to join. Civic leaders and school and city officials met Thursday at Mineral Wells ISD’s administration offices to hear a presentation about bringing the Army Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps program, or JROTC, to the high school.

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos 2 Links

  • Pat Green and Crowd.JPG Buckets, boots filled

    Country music stars helped raise more than a quarter million dollars for local volunteer firefighters during last weekend's Fourth Annual Buckets and Boots benefit concert.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo 1 Link

  • 0720 one geese IMG_0387.jpg Geese are birdies not par for the course

    Birdies are not something golfers want many of – ones they create by failing to shoot par or the large, living, two-legged kind that damage a course's fairways and greens.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Police investigate area store burglary

    A thief or thieves struck a local shop sometime around the July 4 weekend or early the next week, swiping about $3,000 worth of jewelry.

    July 17, 2014

  • choates.jpg Local Pythian couple ready for service

    Oscar Choate seems called to service.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Baker 2 (Clint).JPG City Council appoints 4B board members

    In regular session Tuesday, the Mineral Wells City Council selected a seven-member board of directors for an economic development sales tax nonprofit corporation.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads

Click on a photo to see our SmugMug photos

Seasonal Content
AP Video
Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence NYPD Chief Calls for 'use of Force' Retraining VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress Bush: Don't Worry, Sugarland Isn't Breaking Up US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Raw: First Lady Says `Drink Up' More Water Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Holder Urges Bipartisanship on Immigration Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City Diplomatic Push Intensifies to End War in Gaza Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.