Event Horizon: Laughs For Giraffes

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August 2, 2017
Volunteer Vista: Bonnie’s Garden
August 2, 2017

Animal Keeper Mike Bona was inspired by his work with giraffes at the Zoo and in the wild to start the annual Laughs for Giraffes fundraiser. Photo by Jamie Pham

The second annual Laughs for Giraffes fundraiser took place at Flappers Comedy Club in Burbank on Sunday, July 9. Organized by the Los Angeles chapter of the American Association of Zoo Keepers, the revelers who gathered raised $2,500 for the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, and had a great time doing so.

The event featured a live raffle of items including a painting made by Rosie the hippo (her medium of choice being her derriere, pressed against the canvas), a lifetime membership to Flappers Comedy Club, a movie poster for “The Original Kings of Comedy” autographed by Steve Harvey, Bernie Mac, D.L. Hughley, Cedric the Entertainer, and director Spike Lee, and a whimsical illustration of an okapi made by Dreamworks animator Evan Boucher. The evening’s emcee, Jose Barrientos, entertained the audience with a running gag in which he repeatedly mispronounced “okapi,” but claimed to be extremely knowledgeable about the species.

L.A.-AAZK President Mike Bona stepped onstage to thank attendees for their support, and other L.A. Zoo figures in attendance included Dr. Cathleen Cox, Chief Veterinarian Dr. Lisa Naples, and numerous animal care, education, and GLAZA staffers. Headliner D.J. Demers even poked fun at this when working the crowd: two of the audience members he engaged in conversation were affiliated with the Zoo, one a commissary employee, the other a docent volunteer. “Oh, you work at the Zoo? What a coincidence!”