The Females of Christmas

By Karey Burek

I thought it would be fun to write about two fierce females for this holiday season. Well, actually not two females, more like nine! We have all heard the stories about the eight reindeers that pulled Santa around the world on Christmas to deliver all of the presents to the good boys and girls. And we know their names; Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen—and of course the most famous was Rudolph. However, I didn’t remember anyone telling me that all of the reindeer pulling this jolly man were female! Yes, it is true. While reindeers of both genders can grow antlers, it is only the female reindeers that do not shed their antlers until spring. The male reindeers shed their antlers in the fall and remain "bald" until spring. So therefore, the reindeers pulling Santa’s sleigh are female.

The second fierce female that deserves a wink on Christmas is Kelly, the winner of the reality show King of the Jungle on Animal Planet. She hung on through 10 days of grueling challenges dealing with physical capabilities, animal knowledge, public speaking and animal handling to come out on top to be crowned Queen of the Jungle. She represents Tampa in a big way, as she is part of the animal care staff at our very own Busch Gardens. She will be hosting her own Animal Planet special on Dec. 22 at 8 p.m., and I am sure more to come, so keep your eyes peeled. I think this is a great accomplishment for Kelly but also it is inspiring for girls around the world because they can see that even females are smart, tough and more than capable of hosting their own show! Move over Croc Hunter, there’s a new host in town!

So hats off to these wonderful women who help us celebrate the holidays this year.

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