Thursday, January 19, 2006

Chico the monkey celebrates 36 years

Chico the monkey celebrates his 36th birthday with a party at The Animal Kingdom Pet Center in Chicago.

Owner Bob Hoffman raised Chico from infancy and says he is one of a handful of organ grinder monkeys left in the United States. He has been monkeying around Chicago for a long time and he goes ape every time his friends throw him a birthday party.

Every year on January 17 at Animal Kingdom on North Milwaukee Avenue, they plan a big party for Chico and then they have to make a monkey shine.

"Well, Chico's getting a bath so he's ready for his 36th birthday party. He was born January 17th, 1970," said Bob Hoffmann, Owner of Animal Kingdom.

"I am cutting up some fruit for our birthday boy today. I've grown up with Chico since he was nine months old so this is like my best friend's birthday party," said Steve Maciontek, G.M. Animal Kingdom.

Bob Hoffmann has been throwing a party for Chico for about the last ten years. His customers love it, Chico loves it and besides, Chico isn't getting any younger.

"At 36 years old it's not really unheard of but that's really getting up there. It's like a human being in their mid seventies. So he is quite old," said Bob Hoffmann.

Chico is also lucky because in the wild these five pound capuchin monkeys from South America don't live past age twenty.

Story here.

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