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Office of Governor Pete Ricketts

First Family Names “Penelope the Wallaby”

Announcement follows statewide naming contest. Photo attached.

LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts and the First Family of Nebraska announced the name of a young wallaby following a statewide contest held in partnership with the Lincoln Children’s Zoo.

As a part of this contest, Nebraskans were encouraged to suggest a name for the young female tammar wallaby (photo attached) with the winning name selected by the First Family. The contest ran from June 23rd until July 31st.

Out of over 140 submissions, the First Family selected “Penelope” as the winning name for the young wallaby. The name was suggested by Beau Labedz of Omaha and Emma Brandt of Kearney.

“We received a lot of great names to consider. Roscoe, Margot, and I debated amongst ourselves, but eventually agreed on Penelope because the wallaby is a girl and the name rhymed a little,” said Eleanor Ricketts, daughter of Governor Pete Ricketts and First Lady Susanne Shore.

“This naming contest was a great way to highlight how zoos bring together Nebraska families,” said First Lady Susanne Shore. “There’s still time to get out and enjoy one of our state’s great zoos, and our family encourages Nebraskans to consider visiting one of them this summer or fall.”

“The Lincoln Children’s Zoo has been large source of entertainment and education to numerous Nebraska families,” said Governor Ricketts. “We must continue to support and cultivate organizations like the Lincoln Children’s Zoo which add much to the quality of life in our communities.

“Our mission is to connect children with animals. Giving the First Family an opportunity to name one of our wallabies is a wonderful way to foster that relationship,” said Lincoln Children’s Zoo CEO John Chapo.

Tammar wallabies are native to South Australia. Penelope the Wallaby is one of 11 living at the Lincoln Children’s Zoo.

Baby Wallaby