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Hangin’ around with Austin’s monkeys

Several readers suggested that I look into the history of the monkey house at Horace Austin State Park. This story from 1934 was published in “Mill on the Willow: A History of Mower County, Minnesota.”

“A popular notion that peanuts are a monkey’s favorite food was discounted today by Fred Mann, custodian of the Horace Austin State Park, who explained what is being fed to the five monkeys here. “They like corn and wheat more than anything else.”

Before they were sent to Austin, the five monkeys apparently did not receive the best of care, and they arrived here thin and hungry, they have been eating almost constantly since their arrival.

They are African monkeys. Two of them are less than a year old, while the other three are between one and three years of age.

Unless people stop annoying the monkeys, it may become necessary to cover the cage for certain periods of the day and give the animals a rest. Spectators seem to expect the monkeys to perform all day long. Some have resorted to the use of sticks and other methods to keep the animals in action.

Children seem to have a better understanding as to how to treat the monkeys.”

 This week at the HHH

Sunday: Austin Wedding Showcase featuring the Austin Bruins from noon to 3 p.m. Bridal Fashion Show presented by Belles & Beaus and ViDeyo Arts at 2 p.m. Admission $3 at the door.

 Coming soon to the HHH

•Cooking Tips & Trends on Saturday, Feb. 18 at 10 a.m. presented by Josh Diaz from Piggy Blues, as part two of three-part “Passport to Flavor” classes in January, February and March. Register through Community Ed at 460-1704.

•Social Concerns: New Jobs in Austin by John Garry of the DCA at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 21. Register at 433-4243 by Monday, Feb. 20.