Some say it’s already a 24×7 zoo wherever you look in Las Vegas, but that’s apparently not enough to satisfy Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman, who is now trying to get Las Vegas a brand new zoo- and – are you sitting down? – some croc’ wrestling!
The project reportedly would be run by the family of the late Steve Irwin. Irwin, you may recall, is the famed crocodile hunter who tragically died three years ago after being hit in the chest by a stingray’s barb while he was snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
The Irwin family runs the Australia Zoo in Queensland and recently met with Mayor Goodman about opening a similar operation in Downtown Las Vegas, blighted by one failed business after another.
“It looks like a great project with a crocodile-type enclosure where they would wrestle with the crocodiles and feed the crocodiles and have a real educational component to it and we’re going to continue those discussions,” said a jubilant Mayor Goodman.
The discussions may include another facility that you might not typically speak of in the same breath as crocodile wrestling.
Goodman also met recently with a group interested in building a children’s hospital in Downtown Las Vegas.
“I’m trying to marry the two of them together because I think it would be great to have the crocodile zoo, so to speak, next to a children’s hospital where children have to be cheered up and have a bright outlook and I thought the two of them could be together on a piece of property that the city owns,” said Mayor Goodman.
Whether Las Vegas would sell or lease the land to the Irwin group is still unknown. The city is waiting for a proposal. But one thing they do know is that it would be very different from the controversial Las Vegas Zoo that’s recently come under fire from the Humane Society of the United States after a Contact 13 hidden camera investigation on animal cruelty.
“The zoo would be a limited zoo. It’s an Australian zoo. We’re not gonna have lions and tigers and giraffes and all the things that Darcy Spears [Las Vegas news reporter] would want to have an investigative report about. We’re just going to have wombats and platypuses and koalas and crocodiles. I’m a big crocodile fan. I love crocodiles. So it’s my kind of zoo,” said Mayor Goodman.