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Thursday, December 21, 2006

Streamlining Samson

There's been a lot of Samson the Gorilla news & buzz around here and my blog has seen some activity because of it all. It seemed like the right time to do a little updating and some "streamlining" in order to make it easier for anyone searching for Samson.

Not too long ago I had a chance to meet up with Joe Libertore, the man who was planning on doing a film about the most famous former resident of the Milwaukee Zoo, Samson. This film was intended to accompany the new exhibit at the Milwaukee Museum, which is set to open on December 26th. Unfortunately the museum didn't seem to think there'd be enough money in the budget for the film amenity, but Joe is confident that one day this project will be made.

We are both eager to try and arrange a meeting with myself and Sam LaMalfa, the long-time caretaker for Samson, and the man responsible for providing my family one of the most memorable days in our lives. LaMalfa has done rather a lot of work with this museum project and will be on hand at the exhibit often. Joe & I both think that it would be great to capture our meeting on film and I would love to simply be able to shake his hand & thank him for such a tremendous day. Here's hoping!

Here's a great story about the opening of the new museum exhibit. This was left for me as a comment from an anonymous reader and I'm very grateful for the information. This piece featured some fantastic archival photos of the mighty ape (Courtesy of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Archives) as well as a video featuring Mr. LaMalfa describing his time with Samson as well as a bit about the exhibit. There's even a forum section where people can share their own memories of Samson. I may have to drop them a line.

My mom even sent me a stuffed Lowland Gorilla with adoption forms from the World Wildlife Fund as a Christmas present. A nice reminder of the coolest day I can recall, indeed. Seems like a whole lot of Samson going on these days.

Here are all the Samson links from my blog, in order to make researching this great creature a bit easier.

Samson Serendipity
(Oct. 21, 2005). This is about when I was contacted by a writer from Milwaukee Magazine. This writer was also the first person to be able to offer up the name of the man who made our family's visit with Samson so special, Sam LaMalfa.

Audrey Hepburn, Samson the Gorilla, Deni Bonet, & Other Andy News (Feb. 24. 2006) A follow-up to the Milwaukee Magazine post, including info about the article, and an image taken from the magazine, mentioning me. There's a lot of stuff in this post, so don't be distracted by the photo of the lady with the enormous cans.

Sixteen Years Ago Today (April 1, 2006) This is a reprinting of the story I wrote and originally published at The Cheers, "Samson". For the life of me I can't seem to get all the apostrophes and quotation marks to stop doing that weird rtf/html/snafu thing. So if you'd like to read a better, cleaner version of the piece click HERE.

Subject: An Article I Wrote About Samson for The Cheers (June 24, 2006) This is the post talking about Joe Libertore and his idea for a film. I'm certain this will happen one day.

Again, the link to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel story about the "Samson Remembered" exhibit.

The latest post, added November 24, 2007 regarding the PBS program, "Samson: Then & Now" featuring yours truly!

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Anonymous hellbunny said...

I hope they eventually get the funds to do everything.I know it must be difficult for museums to do some exhibits due to financial restraints.
Hope you have a great christmas holiday and thank you for visiting my blog.

7:29 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This was a very cool post Andy (as usual). I have a "Louie Louie" story to relay to you from Guitar Player magazine when we talk next. When I first started reading this, I thought you might have been joking about Britney Spears and K-Fed. Thank God I was wrong! YAY D-Man for joining Andy's Blogroll!!!!

10:34 AM

Blogger golfwidow said...

My favorite is the Samson story at the zoo, and your ossified orange. (I always associate that with my birthday, not the least reason being that the last time you reposted it was the week of my birthday.)

Me and Samson: Oranges are our favorite. Because they have appeal.

10:51 AM

Anonymous LisaBinDaCity said...

I loved Samson's face. Very old soul was in those eyes.

Happy Holidays Andy!

3:47 PM


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