On September 17th don’t be surprised if your social media newsfeeds are taken over by adorable red pandas -- red panda status updates on Facebook, red panda tweets on Twitter, and red panda photos on Instagram. That’s because we’ll be celebrating International Red Panda Day next Saturday in with 100,000 of our closest friends around the world.
If you’re in Toronto on September 17, we encourage you to drop by the Toronto Zoo and spend the afternoon learning more about the red panda. The Toronto Zoo is one of 40 zoos around the world that will be coordinating events on that day.
Team Kigurumi will be dressing up in our red panda kigurumi onesies in order to help bring greater awareness of the plight of the red panda to the world. Despite conservation efforts by the Red Panda Network and more than 40 zoos around the world, fewer than 10,000 of these red pandas now exist in the wild. Without your help, we might reach a day where the red panda faces imminent extinction.
And a world without red pandas is a world we don’t ever want to contemplate.
So here’s what you can do - head on down to the Toronto Zoo between 11:00am and 4:00pm and visit us at the Red Panda Exhibit in the “Eurasia” zone of the zoo. It shouldn’t be hard to find - just follow the trail of people dressed in red panda onesies headed in that direction! We’re expecting a big turnout for the event, and we have a special giveaway planned for those attending. (Hint: it involves red pandas)
For the little ones, there will be a chance for them to become official “Red Panda Rangers” by participating in activities that teach them about the habitat and behaviours of the red pandas, who are native to the forests of the Himalayas. And there will be plenty of events and red panda goodness for people of all ages - games, educational activities and a fun red panda-themed silent auction featuring a painting created by one of the zoo’s red pandas. There will be Kigurumi merch available in the silent auction fundraiser, as well as a photo booth where you can dress up in red panda onesies!
Our red panda kigurumis are warm fleece onesies that are perfect for the upcoming fall and winter, and you might just end up wearing them all year round. We’ve even seen summer photos on Instagram of people wearing their red panda onesies at the beach!
The red panda may not be as well known as the giant panda, but we hope that changes after International Red Panda Day this year! Post your red panda #kigurumi photos to Instagram and show your friends that you’re doing your part to save the lovable red panda. Tweet out your favourite moments from the day and make this day count.
And remember - all contributions to the Red Panda Network made during the day will go directly to support the wonderful research, conservation, education and sustainable development work that they do all year. So join Team Kigurumi as we hang out with Canada’s favourite red pandas next Saturday!