Penguin Helps Pop The Question

In a romantic penguin story that trumps the famous Penguin Place proposal from 2 years ago a West Edmonton Mall penguin – featured in a movie starring Jessica Alba and commercial with David Suzuki – took a break from Hollywood to pop a penguin proposal.  Tweeblik, an 11-year-old African black-footed penguin, bared a shiny ring around her bow-tied neck for Corey Tinkess to propose to his animal-loving girlfriend Thursday.  “I’m shaking,” said Amanda Timmers, 22, as she tearfully accepted the diamond ring at the mall.  “Didn’t expect that did ya?” Tinkess said.  She didn’t suspect a thing.  Tinkess, 23, a high-school teacher in Ingleside, Ont., began planning the unique proposal to his girlfriend of five years in October. He coincided a week-long trip from their home province of Ontario to Edmonton with a penguin class at the mall to learn more about the critters.  The couple sat down, ready to watch a penguin create them a painting, when Tweeblik waddled in the room with an engagement ring.  “I do love penguins,” said Timmers, who is working toward a career in psychology. “I love them because they are so awkward, the way they walk.” Tweeblick was selected by her caregivers for the special task thanks to her friendly and outgoing demeanour, said trainer Jill Young. “(She) is very comfortable working with the cameras,” Young said. Gnome-sized Tweeblick ¬ the smallest of the West Edmonton mall penguins ¬ starred in the 2007 romantic comedy Good Luck Chuck with Alba and Dane Cook. Born and raised at the mall, Tweeblick has also been in Telus commercials and a power-conservation commercial with Suzuki. This wasn’t the only time Tweeblick has helped in the romance department.  Last year the tiny penguin was the ring bearer at an Edmonton wedding.  “I had to walk down the aisle (with the penguin),” Young said with a smile. But this was the two-legged creature’s first marriage proposal. “It’s so creative. It’s such a great idea,” said Lori Reinholt, Marine Life education supervisor, who helped plan the secret proposal. After the question was popped, Tweeblick’s trainer dip the animal’s feet in blue and white paint to create a picture for the newly-engaged couple. “Penguins (have the same) mate for life and that’s really symbolic of how I feel about her,” Tinkess said. Strangely, this wasn’t the only penguin proposal recently. Last month, a U.S. couple were engaged in the penguin exhibit at an Ohio zoo.

Xorey Tinkess proposed to his girlfriend Amanda Timmers after Tweeblik , a 12 year African Penguin carries in the engagement ring into the room around her neck

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