Even workers feast on Thanksgiving

Hillcrest Park Zoo dietitian Lisa Fox feeds Thanksgiving supper to black-handed spider monkeys Thursday at the zoo. (Staff photo: Andy Jackson)

By Andy Jackson: CNJ staff writer

They ate turkey, green-bean casserole, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie. The five black-handed spider monkeys at Hillcrest Park Zoo enjoyed the same meal many of the rest of us did on Thanksgiving — but no stuffing. It seems stuffing upsets their stomachs and leads to diarrhea.

Binky, 2, ate sweet potatoes off of dietitian Lisa Fox’s finger, before smearing pie on the side of his keeper’s cheek.

“Ewww,” Fox said, but she didn’t hold a grudge. Later, she even gave Binky a kiss on the mouth.

Jasmine, 2, seemed to enjoy the crescent rolls the most as she suspended herself in the air. Her four-fingered hands clung to the flaky treat, as her long tail and five-toed right foot clung to the side of her cage.

Binky liked the colorful fruit salad. The proof was in his bright pink mustache and chin.

The monkeys gobbled up fruit salad and sweet potatoes before going near the turkey.

Jasmine gave the turkey a try, then belched in Fox’s face.
“They’ll sleep well tonight,” Fox said.

Thanksgiving meals were for everybody on Thursday, it seemed.

Adults and juveniles at Curry County’s two detention centers had a helping of typical Thanksgiving fare at noon: turkey, sweet potatoes, rolls, stuffing and pumpkin pie, according to detention center officials.

No visiting hours were held Thanksgiving day at either facility, the officials said.

About 50 Clovis firefighters and their families also enjoyed a holiday gathering pot-luck style … until an alarm buzzed “house fire,” around 3:45 p.m.

Firefighters jumped from their chairs to their feet without taking a last bite, and streamed out the door without saying goodbye. Spouses and children ran to the windows and watched the trucks pull away, sirens blaring and lights beaming.

The call turned out to be a false alarm, Clovis Fire Department Chief Kevin Crouch said. The firefighters were able to get back to their suppers about 20 minutes later, he said.

The busiest Thanksgiving Day may have been at the Lighthouse Mission where volunteers with the Mission, Salvation Army, Matt 25 and local ministerial alliance fed more than 300 people.

Lighthouse Mission Director Richard Gomez said this year marked the first time the Mission’s kitchen hosted the event, which drew only about 100 a year ago.