Archive for November, 2009

The Penguins Of Hanukkah

November 30, 2009

Unlike it’s season counterpart the Jewish festival of lights has never really incorporated penguins in the the fabric of the holiday.  In fact up until a few years ago Hanukkah was just a (non-electric) Menorah, some chocolate money (gelt), and a wooden top (draidle). In fact there were on;y a couple of songs pertaining to the holiday and other than the fact that it went on for eight days and if you came from a family on the right side of the tracks you might cash in for week plus one day long bonanza of presents and other loot. In my family it was seven days of pencil cases, school supplies and playing cards and on the 8th day came the biggie. That aside, penguins and Hanukkah simply were never a tradition as the first 3000 years or so of the holiday no one was even aware of penguins. Still, as we waddle on into the 21st century penguins have begun to make their way into many holidays that have not even been a blip on the radar screen and Hanukkah is one of them. As we’ve personally witnessed by our (now defunct) Penguin Menorah that we carried for a half dozen years and the public is clamoring for a return of, Pinkus our Hanukkah Plush Penguin and our very popular Penguin Keppah (or Yarmulka) that has been a hit not only during the holiday season but has been the Kippa of choice for many a penguin loving Bar Mitzvah boy and girl. I realize that having just two penguin Hanukkah themed items does not make for much of a category, but what do you want, a penguin shaped Matza Ball mold?

A penguin who likes to nosh on Gifilte Fish? What's not to like.

It’s Beginning To Look Like Penguin Christmas

November 29, 2009

A half dozen happy penguin ornaments.

With Thanksgiving weekend just about come and gone  and as we now dive  head first into the  Penguin Shopping Season Feeding Frenzy it appears from here that all our Penguin Place Igloo ducks, uh…I mean penguins are in a row.  Our Penguin Place Christmas Section is presently comprised of 54 different penguin items with more on the way. This week after getting a little lost after waddling their way to our old Brooklyn igloo rather than Northampton our quilted Penguin Christmas stockings and holiday kitchen towels have arrived.  They will soon be followed by our penguin holiday tree skirt and holiday penguin throw. Also, after taking a bit of a leisurely waddle to get here we now have 18 brand spanking new penguin Christmas Ornaments! That’s right I said 18 unique penguin ornaments have just arrived and none of the new ones are over $5.95. Also, just in is a mini 7″ x 7″ 2010 penguin nature calendar, chocolate penguin pops, holiday penguin socks for adults and kids, Magic Capri Penguin Pants and from what we hear through the penguin grape vine the Wind-Up Penguin Pooper may be making a comeback before weeks end!!

Mr. & Mrs. Penguin Santa Claus are part of our new ornament selection.

Penguins Still Waddling To Brooklyn

November 28, 2009

Although it’s been five months since Penguin Place has moved from Brooklyn to Northampton some penguin migration habits are hard to break.  Such is the case with our missing shipment  of penguin Christmas stockings, holiday throws, penguin tree skirts, penguin trio holiday dish towels and about a dozen different penguin Christmas ornaments all of which ended up at our old Brooklyn igloo, and then in Fed Ex limbo for the past three weeks.  Apparently, our distributers the customer (dis)service person taking our order back in October failed to hit “enter” after we informed her of our new Northampton address and the penguins went that a way rather than this a way.  Oh well, a couple of phone calls later and they’ve finally been tracked down and re-shipped to our new address just in time for December.  Better late than never is what we like to say in the Penguin biz.

Penguin Christmas Stocking Finally Escapes From New York

Penguins Paying The Bills In Dixie

November 28, 2009

Officials at the South Carolina Aquarium have told the Penguin Post that they posted a $1.1 million profit for the first nine months of this year and will soon pay off the remaining debt from its opening nearly 10 years ago.
To no surprise aquarium officials credit a new exhibit called Penguin Planet for a 12 percent increase in aquarium visitors this year.
Aquarium President and Chief Executive Kevin Mills told The Post that the attraction needs just a few more key donors to pay the last bit of the $12 million debt the aquarium picked up when it opened in 2000.  Or perhaps Mr. Mills should bring in a few more penguins to attract more paying customers?

World’s Strongest Beer is a Penguin!

November 27, 2009

The Penguin Post has learned that a controversial Scottish brewery has launched what it described as the world’s strongest beer – with a 32% alcohol content that’ll have you waddling out of your seat before you finish the first pint! The beer in question is called Tactical Nuclear Penguin and has been recently unveiled by BrewDog of Fraserburgh, Scotland. Managing director James Watt said a limited supply of Tactical Nuclear Penguin would be sold for £30 each and added, “this beer is about pushing the boundaries, it is about taking innovation in beer to a whole new level.” Watt also stated that a beer such as Tactical Nuclear Penguin should be drunk in “spirit sized measures”. A warning on the label states: “This is an extremely strong beer; it should be enjoyed in small servings and with an air of aristocratic nonchalance. In exactly the same manner that you would enjoy a fine whisky, a Frank Zappa album or a visit from a friendly yet anxious ghost.”

After a couple of these you might end up wearing a penguin costume.

The Go Penguins Are A Go

November 27, 2009

The Penguin Post has learned that at long last more than 200 decorated glass fiber penguins have officially  gone on display in Liverpool this week as part of the city’s Year of the Environment.  The Go Penguins artworks were decorated by celebrities, schools and community groups. Colonies of the colorful, flightless birds can be seen across Liverpool, Wirral and St Helens until 10 January.  They are being used to highlight the dangers of global warming and polar ice melting. One of the more heralded penguin sculptures is from Birkenhead-born television and radio presenter Paul O’Grady who designed a penguin called “Owl Ma Penguin” which was inspired by his childhood memories of older women from his hometown.

Some of the more than 200 colorful penguins of Liverpool

Stange But True Penguins

November 27, 2009

While most penguins have chosen to live in pretty much the most inhospitable climate the world has to offer, a select few seem to have mutated and given up their native Antarctic real estate in favor of various locations and incarnations around the world, and we’re not talking Penguin Place either. Here’s a few of our favorites.

Is Pomi the penguin version of Conky from Pee Wee's Playhouse?

Is this little guy friendly or up to no good?

We hear this gets over 50 miles on only a dozen krill!

Welcome To Penguin Place (Northampton)

November 26, 2009

As many of you may know we recently moved this past June from our longtime igloo home at 220 Water St. in Brooklyn  to our new home and igloo hq in beautiful Northampton Mass. Although since 1999 has been primarily an on-line / mail order entity, over the years we’ve had many visitors and shoppers make what I like to refer to as making “a personal penguin pilgrimage” to our former Brooklyn igloo.  But, since we’ve moved to Northampton five months ago we’ve sadly had no penguin pilgrims.  All that changed last weekend when Steve from Hartford made an appointment and stopped by to look for a gift for his girlfriend. Unlike our Brooklyn igloo (which was also a live / work situation) where there was a separate entrance from our home next  for Penguin Place, our Northampton igloo is housed on the second floor of our duplex loft and to visit and / or shop here you pretty much  have to go through a good chunk of our home to reach to Penguin Place.  Also, unlike our former Brooklyn digs which had a freight elevator, we have no such amenity and our penguins are  a bit of a hike up on the 4th floor.  So, as a courtesy to our curious customers and potential pilgrims, and also to show my mom (who cannot handle the stairs) I made a little 90 second Welcome To Penguin Place video .   I figured as the place was all tidied up for impending Thanksgiving company,  the kids at school and the igloo being in relatively good shape better now than never.   The quick tour takes you from our service door downstairs, up 2 flights of stairs, into our first floor, through our living room, past the Penguin Race, up the stairs to the second floor, down the hallway and into our penguin hq igloo where we say hello to number one penguin elf Michelle, do a 360 pan around and that’s a wrap.  The video has virtually no narration as I knew this would be a one take shot with no editing and I didn’t want to say anything I’d regret. So, if you ever wondered what penguin place looked like, here’s a video of our new home and igloo.

This catalog hat & mittens picture of Sophie was taken in front of our downstairs bathroom door

Ride Of The Penguins!

November 25, 2009

This being the day before “turkey day” what could be more appropriate than watching a bunch of “turkeys” dressed as penguins snowboarding in Vail? Last February I received a rush order phone call for 42 adult penguin costumes from a Mr. Paul Rogers, a young man with a vision. Paul’s vision was for he and 41 of his friends to go snowboarding down a mountain in Vail dressed as penguins. Cool vision if you ask me. So, I rushed the costumes out to Colorado and from what I heard it was mission accomplished for the Ride Of The Penguins. Which takes me to yesterday, when after nine months I get a call Paul asking me if I’d seen the clip of he and his friends waddling down the slopes on YouTube? No, I said, but 5 minutes later the answer was a resounding yes, and then 5 minutes after that yes again, a few minutes later I showed it to my wife, kids, cat, neighbor, the guy at the video store . You get the idea. Well, just in time for Thanksgiving for your viewing pleasure and obviously something for everyone to discuss around the dinner table. It’s Ride Of The Penguins. Enjoy and have a waddling Thanksgiving.

Penguins To Take a New Years Day Dip

November 25, 2009

The Penguin Post has learned that on Jan. 1, 2010 the beachfront of the Princess Royale Hotel on 91st Street in Ocean City, Maryland will be crowded with hundreds of Penguin Swim participants and spectators ready to cheer them on as they plunge into the icy Atlantic to raise money for the hospital. Event day registration starts at noon on Jan. 1, 2010 in the atrium at the Princess Royale, with the swim starting at 1 p.m. Advertisement Participants who raise $25 will have their choice of a penguin hat, coozie or stuffed animal. Those who raise $75 can choose between a long sleeve T-shirt or penguin boxer shorts. Those who raise $150 will receive a sweatshirt or penguin pajama pants, and those who raise $250 will receive a beach towel or beach lounger. Those raising $500 or more will receive one prize from each prize level. First, second and third place trophies will be awarded to individual penguins who raise the most money, as well as to teams of penguins who raise the most money. Special recognition will be given to the youngest and oldest penguins. To register, or for more information about the Penguin Swim, please call Amy Unger, Director of Development, at 410-641-9644 or email her at Registrants can register online and track their fundraising at