September 23, 2019

BY MATT LINSEMAN

If you love creepy crawlies and other strange creatures, then you missed a fun time at Conestoga College when Little Ray’s Reptile Zoo paid a visit.

Reptiles that slithered and crawled wowed the crowd in the lower atrium at the college’s Doon campus on March 9.

The reptile man, as they call him, a.k.a. Paul Kennedy of Little Ray’s, spent the afternoon showing off his animal friends to students and teaching them fun facts about the different species he brought along.

“At the end of the night I still get to play with the animals,” said Kennedy. “So it’s a great job.”ML_CSIReptiles_Alligator

“How it started for me was simply a love of the animal,” he said. “I have no background, no schooling whatsoever and I’m self-taught on that aspect of it and it just kept on going. I would do shows and people would just keep asking me more and more.”

He said he had to make a business out of it because he was making more money on the weekend than he was at his regular job working in a broom factory. Kennedy said it was paying the bills at the time and he didn’t realize he could make his own world if he wanted, so that’s what he did.

During the show, students gazed at the animals in awe and excitement as Kennedy exhibited the wonders of the diverse reptile jungle.

“I love reptiles,” said Jamie Nagy, a first-year police foundations student. “I own a python myself and so I wanted to come to the show because I knew I’d fangirl.”

She said she was excited to see Little Ray’s Reptile Zoo here at the college because she is a big fan of reptiles and a lover of animals in general. Nagy hopes to become an animal patrol officer after completing her current police foundations program.

Little Ray’s Reptile Zoo and Nature Centre is located in Hamilton at 869 Barton St. E. They also have a business in Ottawa. Little Ray’s travelling shows are often booked for birthday parties, show and tells at schools, museum exhibits and corporate events.

For more information or to explore the animal kingdom yourself, visit their website at www.raysreptiles.com.

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