Friday, July 18, 2014

Western-Themed Restaurant Opens for Business

Want a western-themed dining experience? Well, you can read all about the one shared my Daniel, Lizzy and I in today's article!
I don't do it as often as I'd like, but I LOVE eating out! I love all kinds of restaurants, especially the ones that get their supplies from local, organic farmers. Last Saturday, a new restaurant opened up at Mary's Mall (that's the mall on the property of Animal Adventures Inc. where a lot of the residents like to go shopping). The restaurant is called the Mary's Western Dining Experience. I wanted to check it out, so my trusty, junior photographer, Daniel P. Smithwater, Lizzy the Lizard and I went to go check the place out.

Upon arriving, I was immediately immersed into the western theme of the place. Literally everything in the restaurant is geared toward the wild west of the 1800's (these were the day of cowboys, native Americans, herds of bison stampeding over the prairie and cattle wrangling); everything from the tables, to the cash register, to the menus, to the entrance door, to the kitchen itself. When we entered the establishment, we were greeted by a friendly waiter (who's also the owner of the restaurant chain). He was dressed in an elegant sheriff's outfit, and even had a cowboy hat!

Later, after our meal, I had the opportunity to interview the owner of the restaurant chain, named Sheriff Bob Walker. He has the title of sheriff not only because that's what he's dressed up as in the restaurant, but he's actually a retired police officer! “I wanted to create a unique dinin' experience for the whole family,” says Sheriff Bob. He also explained that he'd always been a lover of the old west. “My great, great granddaddy was a rancher in Arizona with hundreds of cattle on the prairie. He used to go out everyday and keep 'em in line . . . [it was] an exciting time for him. So I decided to take my love of the wild west and restaurants and put 'em together to make something great.”

Sheriff Bob says he had a hard time trying to find recipes that reflected the wild west theme he wanted for his restaurant. “But we finally rounded up enough recipes to hopefully make this restaurant a success.” Take it from me, the food is fantastic! I had a delicious dish of barbequed chicken ribs with a side of cheesy baked beans. Yum! Daniel ended up eating some sort of cheese, corn and tomato taco and Lizzy had large turkey bacon strips with a side of french fries. All the food they get to make the dishes at the restaurant come from Mac Dee Dee's Organic Farms, not too far from Animal Adventures Inc.

The restaurant has other things to offer besides a great theme and a great décor; it's customary in the restaurant to throw your peanut shells on the floor (though a girl sitting next to us did the same with her chicken bones . . . don't ask) and every few hours there's a special performance from Mr. Tumbleweed, a plant with a hilarious personality. “Mr. Tumbleweed is a very unique character,” Sheriff Bob explains. “He's really an animatronic, but the computer software he's built with enables him to randomly select certain phrases or jokes and tell stories. Sometimes the computer is able to mix up certain stories to give them different and funny endings. We spared no expense in this restaurant.” Sheriff Bob also told me about a chicken eating contest. The goal is to eat an entire chicken in and hour and the winner receives a free tee-shirt. But there's a catch: “You have to eat it without your hands!” Sheriff Bob exclaimed. That sounds like a . . . very . . . “interesting” (and somewhat unattractive) event. I'll pass!

The funniest thing that happened while we were at the restaurant was when Lizzy got “arrested” by Sheriff Bob, apparently for using too much ketchup on her fries (it appears there's an unwritten list of rules in the restaurant and if you break one of them the sheriff “locks” you up). Lizzy was placed in the prison (yes, there's actually a prison cell) and Daniel and I got a good laugh. Lizzy wasn't too appreciative, but oh well. The cell wasn't locked so she got out of there pretty quick, fortunately.

All in all, Mary's Western Dining Experience is a great restaurant to go to and enjoy some quality time with your family, that's full of great food, décor, and a talking tumbleweed . . . just don't get arrested when you're there!

Written by: Mr. Smiley
Photographer: Daniel P. Smithwater
Edited by: Christian Ryan, Joy Hammond


We here at Smiley’s News, I have been working night and day to get articles ready. I could really use some help! So we are looking for people interested in writing (especially kids and teens). If you are interested, PLEASE(!) send an email to and save me from working night and day! I’m exhausted!

Weekly Cartoons

Next Issue: New Dinosaur Discoveries with Dr. Samuel Adamson

Friday, July 11, 2014

Has the Chupacabra Been Captured?

(From left to right, front row) Willy and Tiger Adamson, Angel and Jack Stevenson, Ryan Gregor, Mrs. and Mr. Gregor allegedly captured the elusive Chupacabra . . . but it escaped. I (back, left) and Dr. Arizona Stevenson (back right) went to their house to investigate!

Just a couple of weeks ago, mysterious livestock deaths occurred at Mac Dee Dee's Organic Farm, supposedly by the mysterious and elusive Chupacabra, a normally southern-ranging cryptid (secret animal) nocturnal creature that sneaks into farmers' lands and kills many of the livestock in order to suck the blood of the victim. Reports of this creature date back many decades, but no one has been able to really capture or get other conclusive proof of the animal's existence. Many believe the Chupacabra to be nothing more than a canine with mange disease – a terrible disease that affects canines and causes them to loose their hair and look like a totally different animal – but that wouldn't explain the (sometimes hundreds) of dead livestock and fowl drained of blood.

Perhaps things have changed for the better! Last Monday, residents of Animal Adventures Inc. (AAI. for short), the Gregor family – consisting of Mr. Gregor, Mrs. Lohan Gregor and Ryan Gregor – might have actually captured the elusive beast. Upon hearing the news, my trusty, junior photographer, Daniel P. Smithwater, and I rushed over to get an exclusive interview with the Gregor's and finally see what might be the legendary Chupacabra! We were so excited to see it that I almost forgot my pencil and notepad and Daniel nearly forgot his camera!

We found the Gregor's, Angel and Jack Stevenson and Tiger and Willy Adamson (all friends of Ryan's) in the backyard next to their squirrel-feeder and a small cat carrier: inside, was the amazing animal. After introductions, while Daniel snapped away at the strange creature, I asked Mr. Gregor how they were able to trap the critter in the first place. He is quoted for saying, “Well, my wife was coming outside one day and she saw this little animal feeding from the squirrel feeder and–” Before letting him continue, I had the urge to ask if he actually meant to say “bird-feeder”. “No, we have a squirrel-feeder,” Mr. Gregor told me. “It was my son's idea actually. He felt that squirrels really deserve feeders of their own since it's normally birds that get all the attention.” Then he explained further about how Mrs. Gregor “bumped into” the cryptid. “Anyways, she was going outside and saw this little animal feeding from our squirrel-feeder. She instantly screamed and called for me, and since Ryan's more knowledgeable about animals, I got him over here. He said that it might be a Chupacabra and knew he wanted to catch it to prove it existed.”

Ryan told me that he gathered his friends, Angel, Jack, Tiger and Willy and they got a cat carrier and filled it with cat food. “It was the only thing we could get quickly,” Angel explains. “We weren't sure whether or not this animal actually was the Chupacabra, but considering we didn't know what it was, we figured that we should best better catch it so scientists can take a look at it.” So, being careful not to scare the “Chupacabra” away, they set up the cat carrier trap and all went back inside. After about an hour or so, the “Chupacabra” took great interest in the cat food before trapping itself inside!

“It felt so good actually catching the animal,” Ryan says, “I'm hoping it will allow some insight into Chupacabra behavior. I've always been a firm believer in the Chupacabra, but I never knew they lived this far north.” Now is probably a good time to talk about the creature itself, and not just how they caught it! I was able to get quite close to the “Chupacabra” in the cage – to my surprise, I found it to look quite cute! Like many other Chupacabra sightings suggested, this animal almost completely lacked hair; it also had pointed ears, a slightly pointed muzzle, a thin body frame and a long skinny tail. The sound it made was similar to that of a high-pitched growling and unlike any animal I've ever heard before. The “Chupacabra” sat calmly in the cage eating cat food as Daniel continued to take photographs – it would scoop up the food in its front paws and bring them up to his mouth to eat. How cute!

“According to my research on Chupacabras,” Jack states, “I believe this individual – if it is a Chupacabra – is just a baby. Most Chupacabra sightings speak of a hideous-looking beast, much larger and nastier than the one in this cage. This little guy's almost tame and doesn't seem to have a taste for blood . . . yet.”

After we all had a good look at the “Chupacabra”, we went inside the Gregor's house and Mr. Gregor telephoned AAI.'s head zoologist, Dr. Arizona Stevenson, to come take a look to see if she can identify the strange creature. Over the phone, she said, “I highly doubt it's the Chupacabra. But I'll come take a look.”

Finally, she arrived at the house and we all went out back to show her the “Chupacabra” . . . but the cage was empty! A large gaping hole was left in the right side of the cage! Needless to say, we were all shocked as to how on earth such a small and almost-cute creature could have escaped the stong confines of its captivity. The only proof we have that the creature was even there in the first place is Daniel's photographs that he took (normally he takes them after I'm finished with my interview, so it's a good thing he did things differently this time!).

“I don't understand!” Tiger exclaimed. “It was just in this cage!” Daniel got out his camera and showed the pictures to Dr. Arizona. She smiled and shook her head. “It does look a lot like a Chupacabra would be expected to look like,” she said, “but to me it looks like a small dog with mange.” Then I protested that the creature ate with its hands, something a canine can't do. Then she said, “Well, I guess the next candidate would be that this bizarre-looking creature is nothing more than a raccoon with mange.”

I'm pretty convinced that what we saw was a Chupacabra, but I guess the experts just won't ever be convinced, especially since our creature somehow was able to break free. Oh well.

I then asked Mrs. Gregor what she thought about the whole thing. She is quoted for saying, “Personally, that . . . 'thing', Chupacabra or whatever it was, kind of creeped me out. I'm just hoping it doesn't come back.”

To this day, one thing still remains in my mind: something must have let the “Chupacabra” out . . . since the animal was a baby, could it have been . . . its mother? We may never know, but one thing's for sure: whatever we saw – whether it be the Chupacabra or a raccoon with mange – was something species and something we're not likely to see again. “Sure we didn't prove the Chupacabra exists,” Ryan says, “but I'm just glad that I was one of the first individuals to see it in the first place!”

Written by: Mr. Smiley
Photographer: Daniel P. Smithwater
Edited by: Christian Ryan, Joy Hammond

We here at Smiley’s News, I have been working night and day to get articles ready. I could really use some help! So we are looking for people interested in writing (especially kids and teens). If you are interested, PLEASE(!) send an email to and save me from working night and day! I’m exhausted!

Weekly Cartoons

Next Issue: New Western-Themed Restaurant Opens For Business

Friday, July 4, 2014

Lizzy's Jello Fruit Salad

Yummy! Put jello and a fruit salad together and you get a jello fruit salad! Keep reading to learn how to make your own.
Here at Animal Adventures Inc. we really get into the spirit of July 4th. Even though the party was yesterday, it was so much fun that I just had to tell you all about. Mr. Smiley went all out this year. He let everyone go home early the day before and wouldn't you know it, Mr. Smiley decorated the whole office building! Everywhere you went you would see red, white, and blue. Chef Rack-coon even took the liberty of making fruit pizza and a patriotic jello fruit salad. The salad was so good, I begged Chef Rack-coon for the recipe.
You will need:
  1. 1 (3 ounce) package of grape or blueberry gelatin jello
  2. 1 1/3 cups of boiling water
  3. ½ cup canned blueberries, drained
  4. 1 (3 ounce) package of lemon jello gelatin
  5. 1 1/3 cups of boiling water
  6. 1 (8 ounce) carton of whipping cream
  7. 8 ounce of cream cheese
  8. 1 (3 ounce) packaged of cherry gelatin
  9. 1 cup of boiling water
  10. 1 cup of cold water.
  1. Next off, we need to do the first layer of the jello fruit salad. First dissolve the grape or blueberry jello in boiling water. Then add the drained blueberries and pout it all into a mold, which is sprayed lightly with Pam. Then chill the mold until set.
  2. Second layer, dissolve the lemon jello in boiling water and refrigerate until just cool. Then Beat it together with whipping cream and cream cheese until well blended. Mix in cooled jello and pour over first layer and chill until set.
  3. Last layer, prepare the cherry jello and pour over second layer and chill until set. Then unmold by running a knife around the edges of the mold or rinsing the bottom of the mold with hot water if it does not come out easily. Now you can decorate it with a few paper mini flags on toothpicks in jello to make the salad even more patriotic. Last but not least, time to eat!
Have a good Independence day!

Written by: Lizzy the Lizard
Photographer: Daniel P. Smithwater
Edited by: Christian Ryan, Joy Hammond and Mr. Smiley

We here at Smiley’s News, I have been working night and day to get articles ready. I could really use some help! So we are looking for people interested in writing (especially kids and teens). If you are interested, PLEASE(!) send an email to and save me from working night and day! I’m exhausted!

Weekly Cartoons

Next Issue: Chupacabra Captured?

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Riverville Museum of Natural History Gets New Dinosaur!

George the Allosaurus is the newest edition to the Riverville Museum of Natural History. Continue reading to learn more about him!
The Riverville Museum of Natural History right here in Riverville, New York near Animal Adventures Inc. (AAI.) is one of the largest and most elaborate museums in the area, and they have a very impressive dinosaur exhibit. The dinosaur exhibit already has several skeletons, dinosaur replicas, souvenir shops and fossils of dinosaur eggs and nests. But the exhibit just got even cooler, because they just unveiled the skeleton of a brand new dinosaur: an Allosaurus fragilis!

I going to have one of my co-writers, Lizzy the Lizard do this story for me, but she's on off in Mississippi visiting my intern's uncle, Tyrone, following some mysterious clues or something, so my trusty, junior photographer and I, Daniel P. Smithwater and I went over to the museum to learn more about the unveiling of the new dinosaur skeleton from the museum's co-curator, Otis Ostrich, who as you might recall is also the town's President of the Town Board.

Upon finally laying eyes on the Allosaurus – who has been named George by its finders – I was stunned! The amazing skeleton is ten feet tall, stretches 30 feet from nose to tail and weighed 2.1 tons in weight when alive. “This museum received George in Autumn of last year when a paleontological team of fossil hunters decided to donate him to this museum,” says Otis. “We gladly accepted him and have spend a great deal of time and money cleaning, preparing and getting it ready for the grand reveal!”

Otis explained that George is one of the most complete Allosaurus ever found and its skull is around 95% complete. That in and of itself is fascinating. Most times, when fossils of dinosaurs are found, scientists only discover remains of scattered and/or broken bones, teeth or claws.

I wanted to learn even more about George and the world he lived in, so I went to AAI.'s head paleontologist, Dr. Samuel Adamson, for answers. He is preparing for another dinosaur hunting season; he and his team go out to several dig sites around North America (sometimes around the world) every summer to hunt for new dinosaur fossils. However, he was glad to take time to answer some questions I had.

When asked to tell us a little bit about George the Allosaurus, Dr. Samuel is quoted for saying, “Allosaurus is a carnivorous theropod dinosaur known from Europe, east Africa and western North America, mainly in the Jurassic Morrison Formation. It wasn't the largest killer on the block, but this Jurassic predator was the most common and one you wouldn't want to run into! The average Allosaurus grows around eight to ten feet tall and 28 feet long. George is slightly bigger.” He went on to explain that Allosaurus hunted just about every other dinosaur in the region, including small to medium-sized ornithopods such as Dryosaurus and Camptosaurus to creatures like Stegosaurus and juvenile sauropods. The larger sauropods like Apatosaurus and Diplodocus would have been too large to bring down.

Then Dr. Samuel went on to tell me how George died. “George was discovered in Flood sediments (those are thick layers of once-soft rock laid down during the Genesis Flood of Noah's day around 4,350 years ago). This means that he died during the Flood. Evidence tells us that as the water's were rising, animals ran inland to escape the water. However, they couldn't escape for long, because the Bible tells us clearly that the Flood waters covered the entire earth in water (Gen. 7:17-21); therefore, any dinosaurs surviving late into the Flood would have drowned. George died and was buried long before that happened . . . [it is] likely that he was overcome with waves and was rapidly buried in sediment before turning into the fossil skeleton he is today.”

George is definitely a great testimony to Noah's Flood and a terrific new edition to the museum collection. So be sure to come and check George the Allosaurus out in his new exhibit and learn more about this amazing dinosaur!

Written by: Mr. Smiley
Photographer: Daniel P. Smithwater
Edited by: Christian Ryan, Joy Hammond

We here at Smiley’s News, I have been working night and day to get articles ready. I could really use some help! So we are looking for people interested in writing (especially kids and teens). If you are interested, PLEASE(!) send an email to and save me from working night and day! I’m exhausted!

Weekly Cartoons

Next Issue: Lizzy's Jello Fruit Salad Recipe