The 13-year-old lion was not only a tourist favorite, but also, a research animal. The beloved lion was being studied by the Oxford University Conservation Unit.
The Mud City Crab House in Manahawkin, N.J. isn’t serving crab cakes these days. It isn’t serving up much of anything after Superstorm Sandy flooded the restaurant, and put it out of commission.
But the seafood shack on the bay will be serving up Thanksgiving dinner for 1,000 people.
Eric and Melanie Magaziner own the restaurant, and worked with the local school district to provide Thanksgiving meals at the high school.
Normally, local churches serve Thanksgiving dinner to the needy. But the churches were either flooded by Sandy, or are now busy providing other services to survivors of the storm.
Melanie said when she realized that the regular Thanksgiving dinners weren’t happening, she put out a call for help.
“People who lost everything want to volunteer, so it’s something I can’t even describe really,” Melanie said.
Almost every home in town was flooded with water up to five feet deep. In some cases, the storm actually knocked houses off their foundations, and people lost everything.
But Melanie said the tragedy has brought out the best in people.
“Everyone in our community has really come together,” she said.
Melanie says she came home to find friends and neighbors pulling down rotted walls and cleaning up water, so she wanted to give back something as well.
“I’m not really good at gutting sheetrock,” she said. “I’m good at cooking, so I said this is something I can do to help my community.”