When LION heard that the Banana Derby—a cruel monkey rodeo where monkeys are chained to dogs and raced around a track—was coming to the Northport Firemen's Fair, we pleaded with the Fire Department to cancel the act and protested when our messages were not returned. On the second day of protests, the Fire Department publicly pledged to never hire animal acts of any kind ever again. LION delivered them a platter of delicious, vegan cookies courtesy of BumbleVee Cookies as a token of our appreciation.
The Northport Fire Department's compassionate decision to stop bringing in animal acts for its fundraisers means monkeys will no longer be chained to the backs of dogs and forced to race; pigs, too, will be spared the trauma of racing; and animals won't be used as photo props in petting zoos.
During the last few days of the fair, the fire department took its commitment to animal welfare even further. After finding two baby rabbits in the parking lot—one with an injured leg—a fire department representative asked PETA and LION demonstrators for help. The adorable twosome was taken to a wildlife rehabilitator to be treated and eventually released back to the wild.
Banana Derby exhibitor Philip Hendricks has been cited by the USDA for failure to provide adequate space, environmental enrichment, and/or clean and wholesome food to the animals in his care.