With the weather getting cooler and the nights longer it’s time once again to start thinking about a pair of comfy and cool flannel pajamas, and do we have a great looking two piece set for you. Our classic 100% cotton, penguin pajama set features dozen of different penguin species in all their glory and cuteness throughout. This long sleeve women’s penguin pajama set (although there is no rule that says penguin loving men can’t have a pair) is a true classic. So perfect is the marriage of coolness, style and comfort, you’ll never want to take these PJ’s off. They’re made in the U.S.A. 100% cotton / flannel and come with a matching penguin eye mask, full length P.J. pants with 3/4″ elastic waist and drawstring for the perfect comfy fit. Available in sizes XS, S, M, L, and XL. Plus, Free Domestic Shipping!
Posts Tagged ‘Penguin Place’
In trying to show the folks at home what some of our moving, singing, dancing and waddling penguins are like in action we’ve decided to make our own Penguin Gift Shop Youtube page and include links to these video’s embedded in the specific penguin items description. All of which makes answering the questions as far as what our new Singing / Dancing Happy Birthday does (featuring Rose and Greta) and what our incredible dancing Penguin CineSpinner does (courtesy of the Buzzcocks). All check out our very fun video Rose Makes The Penguin Race Go Wee!
It’s been a while, but we’ve finally found some time to put up on our P-Bay Page about three dozen very interesting vintage penguins. Most of these one of a kind classic waddlers are from a collection that dates back to the 1970′s and 80′s. They are ceramic figurines, music boxes, retro creamers, beach towels, pillows, wind chimes and probably the most unique is a strange mythical looking flying penguin with giant red wings and a wolf’s head tied around it neck. Fun stuff.
The soon to be released Noodles & Albie is a colorful and fun penguin picture book. Story by Eric Bennett and illustrations by Liz Bannish. It is the tale of how a young penguin (Noodles) overcomes his fears and makes, loses and finds again an unlikely new friend (Albie), and does a lot of growing up the process.
Noodles & Albie was conceived and evolved over time by Penguin Place founder and long time lover of all things penguin Eric Bennett as a bedtime story for his young daughters. The story was originally called The Fish & The Penguin, and was scribbled down a couple of times, and over time some illustrations were made by Eric and his kids, but it was mostly told and re-told from memory and over the years with each re-telling the story grew and the characters evolved.
This past January, Eric was “volunteered” by his youngest daughter Rose to read a story to her kindergarten class, so Eric decided rather than read something the kids already knew, he’d finally put The Fish & The Penguin story to paper and read his original penguin tale to Rose’s class. In writing it down Eric fleshed out the main characters a bit more giving them the names Noodles and Albie, and added a few supporting underwater players. The origin of the title names were that Noodles has been Eric’s nickname since he was a kid (think long curly ringlets of 1970′s hair), and Albie is the the nickname of Eric’s friend Melissa who he plays ball with. Eric also decided on settling on those names so as not to upset either of his daughters, and also to give the characters a bit more personality than the generic Fish & Penguin. Besides, it seemed from the get-go that the names Noodles & Albie fit the characters perfectly.
To Eric’s surprise and delight the reading of Noodles and Albie to Ms. Bussone’s kindergarten class at Bridge St. School was met with much fanfare and acclaim, or as much acclaim (twenty 6 years old kids giving a standing ovation) as one can get from a kindergarten class. Even Ms. Bussone wanted to know the origin of this “wonderful book”. A small Noodles & Albie buzz was now in the air around the lower grades with Eric getting requests for print copies of the story from some of the children and parents at Bridge St. School. A short time later Noodles & Albie was brought to the attention of local Northampton artist Elizabeth Bannish who was intrigued by the charming narrative and colorful characters of the story, so naturally Eric inquired if she would be interested in illustrating the story. To his surprise Liz said yes, and the two began to collaborate on the fun side project of bringing the Noodles, Albie and their world to life. Over the next weeks and months Liz’s illustrations went from black and white storyboard sketches, to beautiful, unique and vivid color paintings. Capturing the essence of the story and her interesting take on the characters that inhabit it.
Not to give too much away but the story is about Noodles, a young penguin who is afraid to go in the water, but of course being a penguin he must learn how to swim, especially before the winter and six months of Antarctic darkness sets in.
On the last day of summer (and daylight), his parents finally convince Noodles to take the plunge. After a few moments of confusion and anxiety Noodles realizes that swimming is easy and fun. But, in his excitement Noodles gets separated from his friends and soon is lost. He knows he has to get back home before the sun sets for the Antarctic (six months) winter or else he’ll never find his way home, and so his odyssey begins. He asks various sea creatures for directions, but none of them know where the penguin colony is. Alone and lost, Noodles is desolate. A small fish named Albie hears his crying and offers to help. It’s a race against time to get back to the penguin colony before the sun sets. The fun adventures and intrigue that happens to the pair along the way is what Noodles & Albie is all about.Noodles & Albie should be available as an e-book sometime the Fall of 2013
The name change has been on the back burners for a while since we purchased the url name penguingiftshop from the retiring former owners in late 2012. For years Penguin-Place.com and Penguin Gift Shop had been friendly rivals in the world of all-penguin e-tailing, and in October when we received a surprise message from Penguin Gift Shop that they were thinking of retiring and offering us their domain name and inventory we jumped on it like a hungry Rockhopper.
When we were first starting on the web back in pioneering on-line days of 1997 we knew we needed a better, more penguin specific url than the name of our retail store, which was Next Stop…South Pole. So, we pondered long and hard, searching for the cutest name we could think of, which turned out to be Penguin Place. The inconvenient – (dash) in the middle was our 1997 webmaster’s idea. Man, was he wrong about that dash. For 16 years I had to repeatedly answer the question, “how come you got a dash in your url?” Also, as the years went by we realized that the name “place” in Penguin Place was pretty much useless to search engines, and so we were schooled big time by websites that came along a decade or so later than our initial launch who by then knew how search engine optimization and specific key words work. Although Penguin Gift Shop didn’t have as nice a website as ours, and only about half as many penguins in their inventory as compared to our, they did have a great, web friendly url for what they were offering (which was a penguin gift shop), and usually ranked higher than us in search engine results. So, when the name was offered to us this past October we jumped at it. Through this past holiday season and into Valentine’s Day we remained Penguin-Place.com, but as we waddled into spring and approached our 28th anniversary day we decided it was time and have now officially changed our domain name to PenguinGiftShop on have the official changeover on March 15th, our 28th anniversary. But, if you look at the masthead on our home page we’re the Penguin Gift Shop at Penguin Place, so Penguin Place will always be with us. We may have changed our url hoping to bump up search engine traffic a bit, but looking at the website everything is exactly the same, and we’re even keeping the name of this blog the Penguin Place Post as well as our Facebook and Twitter pages. My kids are upset about the name change and I’m a little emotional about it, but like they say, it was a penguin offer that we couldn’t refuse.
Penguins don’t usually live to age 28 in the wild, but an all-penguin store is another thing! Yes, 28 years ago today on March 15th 1985, a generation and a head full of hair away, Next Stop…South Pole opened its pushcart doors on the 2nd floor of the old Fulton Market Building at South St. Seaport in New York. If you need to know, the first penguin item we sold was a pack of penguin band aids to a woman who had very painful shoes. Within a few months, we moved to a kiosk, and a year later to a permanent store on the newly opened Pier 17 at the Seaport, and from there our long waddle to 2013 continued. Different locations, mail order catalogs, The Penguin Post Newsletter, moving to something called the internet and a name change to Penguin Place, moving from Brooklyn to Northampton, Mass and now another name change to the more search engine friendly Penguin Gift Shop.
28 years, not bad for a crazy idea of selling nothing but penguins.
The Penguin Post has learned that eight orphaned yellow-eyed penguin chicks have been released back into the wild on the shores of New Zealand. They were rescued from Dunedin’s on the New Zealand’s south eastern coast after their parents were killed by what’s thought to be a bio-toxin. According to local reports the chicks had their hesitant experience of entering the ocean. It’s the first time the chicks have ever set a flipper in the ocean. “They know how to swim, but it’s the sheer size of the sea is a bit scary and there are a lot of waves out there,” says Penguin Place manager Lisa King. But the importance of the yellow-eyed penguin chicks taking on the deep blue is literally a matter of life or death.
“They’ve got to learn how to fish, and that’s their biggest challenge in the next few days,” says Ms King. “And if they don’t work it out quick enough, they’ll come ashore and starve to death.” But they get there in the end, despite a good thrashing from the incoming swell. “This is a second chance for them – their parents have died,” says Ms King. “If they had been left where they were they would have died.” They’ve come a long way thanks to the Department of Conservation. The Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust and the team at Penguin Place admit the endangered species won’t be tamed. “They know what to do when you hold them to feed them, and then they’ll bite you on the way when they leave,” says Ms King.
They were rescued more than 2 pounds underweight after the unexplained deaths of 60 adult yellow-eyed penguins on Dunedin’s coast. Further toxin testing is continuing after initial testing on the dead adult penguins hasn’t give any results. But DOC still suspect the cause is a bio-toxin. “It’s a very long haul for them,” says Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust general manager Sue Murray. “This is the first time they’ve been out to sea. They’ve got to learn to feed, to swim, to compete with predators in the sea. Basically they’ve been thrown in the deep end.” It is a deep end it’s hoped the chicks will return from, and go on to increase the yellow-eyed penguin population.
It’s been about a week since the penguins began waddling in from the west coast and Penguin Gift Shop. Considering that we’re on a 3rd floor walk up here at Penguin Place soon to be Penguin Gift Shop and we need to unpack, inventory and shelf the new penguin goodies in a coherent manner we requested that PGS send us only 8 – 10 boxes a day. They had no problem with our request as they have to wrap and pack everything up anyway. Tonight we finally caught up on opening, unpacking, cataloging and shelving our new penguin inventory (albeit it’s a bit of a mess in the auxiliary penguin store-room. So, right now I’d say we’re about half way done, with the other half en-route. I’ll sure be glad when this is over.
Way back in 1985 a young man (me) with a passion for penguins, opened a small pushcart filled with the aforementioned penguins at the fledgling South St. Seaport in NYC and he (me again) called it Next Stop South Pole. A year or so later that cart became a store, then along came the All-Penguin Mail Order Catalog, by 1995 a newsletter called The Penguin Post, two years later a static website, and a year after that a shop at home on-line e-tail store called penguin-place.com. By 2000 we opted to concentrate on Penguin Place, as we closed our Seaport Store and never looked back.
Back in ’97 when we first started the on-line version of our penguin vision we knew enough that we couldn’t call it Next Stop…South Pole, and that our website needed to have “Penguin” in the name and url, but back 1997 we simply didn’t realize how important the other key words in the url would become. I remember while working on the website pondering long and hard over the right name and being so clueless as to what the correct parameters were other than it should have penguin in the name. We (myself and my web developer) were so naive back then that I simply opted for the “cool” sounding Penguin Place over something less cute and more straightforward, and to top it off my web developer somehow assumed that putting a dash between the words Penguin and Place was the right thing to do. Don’t ask me why he thought a dash was the way to go, but since he had a better computer than me and nerdy glasses I assumed he had to be on to something and the dash was what was required.
Anyway, a few years went by and things at Penguin-Place.com are waddling along nicely, when one day in 2004 my right hand man at Penguin HQ Jake (who’s getting married today) tells me that he just received an e-mail from a customer with some disturbing news regarding our exclusive hold on niche penguin e-tailing. It was a link to a new store that went by the moniker penguingiftshop.com. Suddenly, we were no longer alone in the world of on-line penguin shopping. There was now an east coast Penguin Place and a west coast based Penguin Gift Shop. One would think that in the world of e-tailing that the actual geography of our respective “Igloos” wouldn’t matter, but in reality it did because of what each penguin store brought to the table in the way of product. You see, due to the fact that we (Penguin Place) found virtually all our inventory at the East Coast trade shows and the Oregon based PGS shopped at all the west coast shows our inventories were quite varied considering we both were exclusively penguins.
All things considered, the two all-penguin websites co-existed quite nicely, but there was no denying the fact that the name Penguingiftshop was far superior with a much more organic url as opposed to Penguin-Place. Now, fast forward to about a month ago when out of the clear Antarctic blue sky I received an e-mail from Mark, the proprietor of Penguin Gift Shop stating that he and his wife were on the verge of retiring and wanting to know if I was interested in purchasing Penguingiftshop! What he was offering was the entire inventory of penguin merchandise along the website, url and all. The whole penguin enchilada! It didn’t take me long to figure out that this would be a win-win for everyone and within a few days we had an agreement. Earlier this week the penguins from PGS began waddling in (via FedEx) from the west coast and by the end of next week the migration will be complete. As far as the name of our joined website goes we thought and consulted long and hard with everyone from my webmaster, SEO consultants, friends, family, my kids and even some penguins at the Coney Island Aquarium, and the consensus is that PenguinGiftShop is simply the perfect name for what our business was, is and will be, and had we known the importance of this 15 years ago we already would have been that brand or something close to that.
The fact remains that as familiar as we are to the name Penguin Place, it is far too clunky and awkward in this age of niche url’s to continue on as is, and given this opportunity to change it to something more Google-friendly we can’t be swayed by sentiment or nostalgia. So, the compromise we’ve made following the advice of my kids is to call the new version of our on-line igloo, the Penguin Gift Shop at Penguin Place, with our url officially becoming PenguinGiftShop.com. The website will basically be (and look) exactly the same, just with the new url and header, along with a boat load of new penguin goodies. In other words, as told to me by my web developer, the present Penguin Gift Shop will disappear with its remaining penguin products incorporated into Penguin Place, but then Penguin Place will have its official url changed to Penguingiftshop.com. I’m told it will be seamless, and I have my flippers crossed that it will. In case you haven’t noticed we’ve been adding about 50 new items a day for the past week, albeit most of them are still in “sold out” status until we unpack them. But, by the end of next week we’ll have about 300 new (west coast) penguin items in our inventory, bringing our total to an unbelievable 1000 different penguin items (give or take a waddler). To think we started 25 years ago with 40 penguin goodies. What does this mean for you, the penguin loving public? Nothing, unless you like having more penguins to choose from, convenient one stop shopping, cheaper / easier shipping and the same great customer service. We’re still very much the same mom and pop (and two kids) penguin shop we always were. I guess that makes it a win – win – win!
They say the male Emperor Penguin plays a very important role in child rearing. It’s been about 26 years ago to the day that my dad lent me the money to start my very own all-penguin business. At the time he was recovering from his third heart attack. He was a self-employed wallpaper hanger and let me tell you having a trio of heart attacks in a ten year period is not exactly ideal for anyone, and all the more if you’re working for yourself at a physical job. So when I told him I wanted to open an all-penguin themed pushcart at South St. Seaport he was a little more than taken aback, especially when I mentioned how much it would cost and then without taking a breath proceeded to ask him if he could lend me the four thousand dollars I estimated it would take to start my crazy penguin enterprise. It was no surprise that there were a more than a few skeptics, including my college night school professor whose class How To Start and Maintain Your Own Small Business I enrolled in a few months before I opened my penguin cart. Most thought I was crazy, foolhardy or worse. My girlfriend threatened to break up with me if I quit my “real job” to open a “silly” all Penguin Store. “This cannot be your f*&king career choice, can it?!” She shouted at me one night. My grandparents would tell their friends that I was going to sell real penguins from a moving pushcart like the pots and pans / dry goods cart that once roamed the streets of their Bronx neighborhood. But, after the initial shock wore off it took little convincing. As my dad, who with no strings attached, lent me the money he could so ill afford to part with. At the time he could barely handle the rigors of his job and had virtually no income ( self-employment meant no unemployment benefits), my mom worked part-time, and I also had two younger sisters at home. We drove a beat up gas guzzler, and lived in a cramped 2 bedroom, 800 square foot walk-up in Queens. But, he believed in his son, and the rest as they say is penguin history.
This past Monday, my father, Bernie Bennett, passed away at the age of 79. Yes, I paid him back, and no, he never grew tired of explaining to people (with a huge smile on his face) what his son did for a living. Thanks dad. For everything.