Monkey Jungle in Cutler Ridge is hosting a Malagasy Feast this Saturday as part of its Malagasy Festival, which is a celebration of Madagascar through the country's food, music, art and animal life.

The feast is being prepared by tropical fruit tree expert Robert Barnum and includes

  • Okra Lamb Soup
  • Three Fruit Salad,
  • Grilled Butterflied Lamb Legs and Chicken with Carambola Glaze
  • Red Rice Madagascar
  • Grilled Corn On The Cob In Husks
  • Boiled Green Beans Madagascar
  • Diced Fruits with a Vanilla Glaze
  • Guanabana Cake with Passion Fruit Icing
  • Coffee and Tea with Sugar Syrup

The feast takes place starts at 4 p.m, and costs $75 per person, $45 of which is tax deductible, and benefits the DuMond Conservancy's Trainable Mentally Handicapped Program. I spoke to Dr. Sian Evans, expert primatologist, about the program and here's what she had to say....

Monkey Jungle Hosts Malagasy Feast

"I got involved because Southridge High School has a program especially for 'trainable mentally handicapped' youth, that's their term not mine. They've been bringing classes to the conservancy once a week for about 5 years. When the kids graduated, which they have to do by age 21, they were at home doing nothing, so the parents asked about their kids volunteering. We've been able to get grants and have been able to pay the young people for their work and we regard them as staff members, they do a very good job and they form close bonds with the monkeys. The young people are integrated into our organization and Monkey Jungle as well, so they benefit from being out in the community and the community benefits from getting to know them better, and what I really hope for is that this fosters an appreciation and undrstanding of the important role that people with disabilities can play in our world. They're very empathetic. They take a great deal of pleasure and

happiness when they share in other peoples pleasure and joy. It became

infectious and I'm a happier person because of it."

To purchase tickets for the event you can email
or call 305-238-9981

click dumondconservancy.org for more info

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