Childhood cancer survivor unveils new reptile enclosures at Tarpon Springs Wildlife Sanctuary

When the Tarpon Springs Aquarium & Wildlife Sanctuary unveiled their new reptile enclosure, they couldn’t think of anyone better to reveal it than a 6-year-old childhood cancer survivor who loves reptiles.

The family aquarium and animal rescue often take their animals into the community and when museum co-owner Paige Konger-Henry brought some of the animals to the Children’s Cancer Center, she met a little girl who touched her breast. heart.

The girl loved reptiles and loved to hold a bearded dragon. When Konger-Henry told her to be careful not to touch his head, she looked up and said, “It’s okay. He won’t bite me because I’m brave.”

“I’ve been working with the Children’s Cancer Center for a few years now,” she explained. “I have met these little children who just got one of the hardest hands I have ever seen.”

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The little girl threw a reptile and rainbow birthday party and was selected to officially cut the ribbon on the facility’s new enclosures.

“They are turtle specific and built to last,” Konger-Henry said of the new enclosures. “One of the things with many species of turtles is you can’t just put up a dog pen or a fence because they’re digging. So, you know, we had to drive some dike material several feet into it. floor.”

In addition to turtles, the aquarium and wildlife sanctuary are home to alligators, turtles, snakes, lizards, and other living creatures.

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“We try to give clients a real hands-on experience,” said Paige Konger-Henry, co-owner of the museum. “We’re trying to get people, I guess, as close to nature as possible in a controlled setting.”

On opening day, families at the Children’s Cancer Center were able to visit the attraction for free and 100 percent of donations left at the door that day went to the organization along with 50 percent of park proceeds for the day.

The Tarpon Springs Aquarium is located in Tarpon Springs at 1722 North Pinellas Ave.

LINK: Learn more about the animal sanctuary and interactive exhibits here.

LINK: Learn more about the Children’s Cancer Center here. Cancer center here.

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