Results tagged ‘ Zorilla Gorilla ’
You might remember that last weekend I went around the beaches and stores of the Pinellas County area to bring about the excitement about the Tampa Bay Rays upcoming promotion for the Zorilla Gorilla Webkinz. Well, it is finally only a day for the kids around Tampa Bay to get their own Zorilla to hug, snug or even just put on the bookshelf as a keepsake of their own. So with that in mind, this is the last installment of the Zorilla Gorilla adventures around Tampa Bay.
But what kind of antics will I have our furry friend doing today? I guess since we just had Earth Day recently we might as well take in a few of the natural wonder that make this region such a great place to live….and I might have a few other surprises down the line…You never know with me and the Zorilla Gorilla.
So I decided that the Gorilla needed to go and burn off a few extra calories and some adrenaline that builds up when you are traveling in a car for most of the day. So we headed on over to one of my favorite parks in the area, Lake Seminole and took in the kid’s playground area and also sat on the docks for a bit and watched the boats and jet ski’s streaming by before again heading back to the slides and artificial rock climbing area.
And the kids I saw at the park (along with some of the adults) were excited to know that the first 10,000 of them and their friends would be able to come on down to Tropicana Field on Sunday along with their families and get their own special Zorilla Gorilla for their own. Besides the kid’s getting this great collectible, the parents will see the extreme value that Sunday’s offers with the St. Petersburg Times Sunday Fun Days package where a family of four can come to a game with affordable comfort.
But what kind of day would it be if we did not go hit the best natural option available in this region….the white sandy beaches. So I took the Zorilla Gorilla for his first venture into the area of St. Petersburg Beach and we went out to the jetty area right at the end of Pass-a-Grille Beach and watched the multitudes of boats and watercraft zoom all around the sparkling emerald green open waters of Tampa Bay.
And I have had a few people remark on how the Zorilla Gorilla is a more defined Gorilla subject than his cousin who was given away near the end of 2009 by the Rays Baseball Foundation. His cousin is more in line with a big chimp than the current Zorilla Gorilla who definitely looks more powerful and is larger than life, even on the white sands of the beach among the sea oats.
And it was “Gorilla being Gorillas” while we were at the beach were the trio did paddle ball, swam in the warm waters and just made a day of it, but in the distance we could see a large object dominating the seascape and we decided to head on down the beach about a mile to one of the Rays favorite resorts in this area, the Tradewinds Resort where the team holds outdoor Rays Radio broadcast parties when the weather is prefect and the Rays are out on the road during the beautiful Summer months.
And the Zorilla Gorilla was just like a kid in a candy store as he went from corner to corner of the huge resort checking out all the sights and sounds and also causing a little monkey business of his own. Here he is in the main courtyard by a glorious fountain that he pushed his brother and his little cousin by “accident” right before into the fountain before I took the photo…How thoughtful of him.
I have to tell you, thanks goodness this boat was anchored on solid ground because these three monkeys wanted to get on it and sail out into the western seas of the Gulf of Mexico and really did not think about provisions or even a little banana pick-me-up for later in the day. But he did get to fulfill his fantasy of being “King of the World!” As he did reenact that famous scene from “Titanic” on the landlocked vessel.
But I did try and get that sailor’s anxiousness out of him so all four of us decided to shanghai a paddle boat and we did a lap around the man-made lagoon that encompasses the resort’s property with me doing all the work and the Gorillas all flirting with the girls. I was told since I was the least hairy of the bunch it was my duty to paddle the boat and be the “Captain”, but for some reason I didn’t even feel like the First Mate on this voyage. And why did they keep calling me Gilligan?
But I kept one of the biggest surprises for right after we got off the paddle boats and took them beach-side to see the towering water slide that is always fun
ctioning and also a wet and wild adventure here at the Tradewinds. All three of the Gorillas were eager, willing and sprinted for the line to be the first to try this awesome slide. And I got to say, all three were acrobatic and also very animated as they made their way from the top barreling towards the end of the slide and to again run and get into line…..about 40 times that day.
But while we were out there on the beach sitting in a nice Cabana, one of the Gorilla remarked that he would love to one day own some beachfront property and maybe settle down and enjoy this lifestyle for good. Well that got the rest of us working hard and we produced a nice prototype of his beachfront casa made out of the great sands. And besides, what day at the beach would not be complete without a picture of someone near a sand castle?
So as we were leaving the beach area, the Gorilla’s all remarked that they had a case of the munches, so we stopped by the local Sweetbay Supermarket to get some instant potassium, and one of the Gorilla decided to just be the clown in the store and he jumped right up into the banana display and would not come down without two pounds or more personally put into a bag and saved just for him.
But then, just out of my eye range, another of the Zorilla Gorilla’s had decided he wanted to purchase a bunch of Pepsi products for the trip back into St. Petersburg and was all excited that he could enter for a chance to win Home Plate tickets and a $ 100 food card for future bananas and essentials from Sweetbay. But I think the real reason he wanted to jump up on that display was to finally get a photo with Raymond, the Rays furry mascot.
So I finally got them all out of the store and into the car and we decided to go hit some of the downtown St. Petersburg sites before I finally dropped them off at their hotel for the night. Here they are in the Rays garden that encircles the eastern portion of Tropicana Field and is an example of one of the ways the Rays promote “green” living and provide a journey into some of the areas sustainable plants that do not use excessive water, or promote environmental watershed advantages to your own home planting scheme.
The guys even wanted to visit the Rays Team Store and see some of the great items and values they had for Rays fans, but the store had closed a few hours before, but you know them. They wanted to sit there and wait for the store to open in the morning, and if I had not talked them into visiting some other sites, we might still be there now.
One of the Zorilla Gorillas was actually feeling pretty brave today and wanted to scale the Trop. like his old Grandfather King Kong and lounge around on the sloped roof getting a much needed suntan. But I told him I could not get him to the hatch in the Cupola of Tropicana Field and he would have to just jump for joy and hope this photo remotely looked like he was standing on top of the roof…..Not sure it is totally believable, but he liked it.
And while we were standing in the parking lot of Tropicana field, we heard a sound of a wooden bat and a ball meeting and the Zorilla Gorillas immediately went searching for the sounds. It took us down to Progress Energy Field where a local amateur team was playing an exhibition game on the Rays old Spring Training stomping grounds. We could not get into the front of the stadium, so the Zorilla Gorillas acted like the old Knothole Gang and took their chances by scaling the fence and sitting in the bushes to watch the game.
But what day would not be complete without visiting the construction site of the new Salvador Dali Museum going up right within a Home Run of Progress Energy Field. The Museum is not finished yet, but it will be one of the most beautiful waterfront building in St. Peterburg, Florida when it is finally completed.
Not sure if it was the abstract look of the Dali Museum, or maybe the kiss from the sun and all their adventures of the day finally zapped the Zorilla Gorillas of their energy today, but the guys wanted head on over to Hotel Indigo and call it a night. Got to admit, this small chic boutique hotel has some interesting history as the Rolling Stones once stayed here while doing a concert in the now gone Bayfront Center arena. So I drooped the guy off just in time for “Happy Hour” and they saddled up to the bar for a virgin banana concoction.
But it was a great day for everyone involved, even me. And the Zorilla Gorilla wanted me to end this post with a photo of him outside Tropicana Field hoping that every kid gets a chance today to come on out to the ballpark and take him home for their own. And then they can also embark on the
ir own set of adventures in the far reaching areas of Tampa Bay that we all call home. See you at the ballpark!
I was talking to a member of the Rays Promotional team a few days ago in an email and was told that the Tampa Bay Rays were going to be pushing their upcoming “Zorilla Gorilla” Webkinz that would be given out to kids 15 and younger during the next home stand on Sunday, April 25th. So I floated out an idea that I would take one of these plush promos around the west-side of Tampa Bay over the weekend and get a few shots within a few of the Rays business partners and try and get the buzz hitting a fever pitch for the upcoming promotion.
So today my post will be mostly the photos I took over the past weekend all around the Pinellas County region of Tampa Bay. Sorry to those South of the St. Petersburg area, or to the East in Tampa, but my financial situation doesn’t merit a drive over either bridge at this time. For my travels, I decided to begin with a great morning pick-me-up at a local Tropical Smoothie location owned by the spouse of one of the Rays Front Office members, and got to say, it was one of the best blended and fruitful concoctions I have ever had in my life…Kudos for the Banana/Strawberry smoothie aka Jetty Punch offered by this awesome soda-alternative stand. You can definitely count on me coming back for another slice of taste buds heaven real soon.
So, for today’s post I will be throwing out a multitude of photo shots, and a bit of an explanation for each of the photos. I have to say in advance here, I had a blast because this was one of the first truly gorgeous sunny and steamy days this Spring and it was the perfect weather for not only cruising up and down the beach corridor, but also going out and meeting some of the Rays Republic in the stores and resorts around this great County.
I decided to start my day’s journey after getting a “wake me up” beverage at the place that outside of Tropicana Field holds the biggest set of Rays memories for most of us. That place of course is the St. Petersburg/Clearwater International Airport where almsot 4,000 of us helped celebrate alongside with the Rays their clinch of the 2008 American League East crown. It was a festive day, and one of the best crowd experiences I have ever seen in my life.
So being at the airport, you knew I had to head on over to one of the Rays airline connections and see if I could get the Zorilla Gorilla a First Class seat on a flight to Boston for the Sunday game. But to my dismay, the airline could get me to the NorthEast that day, but I might be a bit north of the desired location, but would have been in a foodie mecca called Portland, Maine. But when the Zorilla Gorilla heard they were serving peanuts as a snack on the flight, he decided he would rather go Fed Ex….Stubborn monkey!
I was sitting there while trying to decide on the photo at the airport and I cam upon the great thought of including my little inanimate Zorilla Gorilla with this great cartoon interpretation of an Allegiant airline jet. Found it very “hip” that the image not only had a sunburst upon the tail section of the jet, but the smile and the sunglasses were an instant hit since this one of the best day so far this Spring.
So then I decided to head on west towards the sound of the crashing waves upon the shores of Florida and came upon one of the Zorilla Gorilla’s favorite spots for a virgin Banana Daiquiri and some great music. But then again, I noticed that tonight was Ladies Night, which showed me that the Zorilla Gorilla loved to dance and mingle and basically let his inner primate come out at night.
The decided to hit the Ambassador Limo location to see if I could set up the Zorilla Gorilla with some plush and elegant transportation for the evening. Well, he had other ideas in mind and was so impressed by the white Rolls Royce and purely extremely lavish transportation that he was really thinking of using this service that evening to make an impression.
So the Zorilla Gorilla called a few of his “Boys”, and away we went for a day excursion up and down the beach region of Pinellas county swinging from the chrome rails above the seats and stopping at every single location that had either Florida gifts or a thatched hut somewhere on the grounds. It was a great day for the Zorilla Gorilla and his cousins to just enjoy the great sights and scenes of the Tampa Bay area.
Since it was still early in the morning, the Zorilla Gorilla decided it was time for another Banana shake and to make get some grub for the day trip today. And since Checker’s was open early now, it just made perfect sense to grab a few great Chili dogs and maybe a few orders of fries to make the trip a bit more enjoyable with a full stomach.
And the poor Checkers worker here did not know what she was getting into as the Zorilla Gorilla group all converged on the “Order” window and did not want to wait their time ordering. For some reason 5 straight orders were given to her at once, and amazingly, she got it right the first time…True professional, plus the Banana shakes were incredible!
But we still had to go get some added goodies and beverages for the beach venture. So we made sure to hit Hess Express for some of our cold needs and unfortunately some good-natured fun at the expense of the Zorilla Gorilla. I have to admit, it was my fault here. He asked me to open the door for him, but I let it close not knowing he was still in there and had not grabbed the Gatorade G2 yet. But that was not the only good natured fun he had at Hess Express.
So we finally got out of the store and headed to one of my favorite sand and mediation spots around this region and the Zorilla Gorilla instantly liked John’s Pass and the activity of all the sunbathers’ and fisherman trying to get some action off the rocks surrounding the pass. Got to admit it here, but it was the perfect scenario, nice seabreeze and even some great commotion started becuase of the Zorilla Gorilla’s celebrity status.
The group instantly took to the fine grit sand and spent a few great moments together as a group before the towel-snapping and the crew all took to the waves to get the much needed feel of the sea water upon their fur. The water was a perfect emerald green today and mixed with the blue of the sky made for a perfect beach day.
After a few hours of paddleball, whistling at a few primates and acting the fool, the boys decided to bury their kid cousin up to his neck in the sand. But little did he know that one of the Zorilla Gorilla group had gone over to one of the fisherman and gotten a live crab he caught and put it right behind him as he was buried in the sand. He did not even know about the crab until one of his pinchers was firmly attached to his nose and he went screaming covered in sand and with a crab dangling from his nose into the swirling waves.
After leaving the John’s Pass beach area, everyone was a bit dehydrated and felt a bit peaked, so we head on over to Sweetbay Supermarket and got some needed potassium from the bananas the Zorilla Gorilla bought in the store. He was actually sitting on the top of this display imitating James Cagney screaming “Top of the World Ma” to anyone who would listen to him. He definitely needed a potassium fix.
But before we could get out of the Sweetbay store, the Zorilla Gorilla saw a Pepsi display featuring the Rays mascot Raymond, and of course, being a good friend of the Seadog, he had to get a entry slip to win Home Plate seats and a $100 grocery spree. Hey the Gorilla might already have his seats, but to get a chance to win tickets to a free food and beverage area, plus a chance to sit in luxury behind Home Plate was an opportunity he did not want to miss out on….He could actually win!
So that concludes our Zorilla Gorilla Adventure for Saturday, but he wanted to be sure to let the Rays fans know about the upcoming Rays Radio broadcast out on the sandy shores of St. Petersburg Beach. The event would include the awesome tall waterslide, plus a chance to win Rays merchandise and possible game tickets. It was an event you know he would not miss, and tomorrow, we will see a few more places that the Zorilla Gorilla hit this past weekend.