Going Camping?? Don’t Forget the Zebra.

I’m not a camper and aside from the s’mores, card games and the occasional highball – it’s not my gig. That said, I have caved on two separate occasions and agreed to camp with the family.

That’s when we first met “Zigby,” the zebra, in Zigby Camps Out. “Zigby,” our stripped hero, embarks on his first-ever camping trip with McMeer (the meerkat) and Bertie Bird (an African guineau fowl). Of course, dear friend, Ella the elephant, advises that no trip is complete without a watermelon. Watermelon, tent and swishy stick in hand, the trio heads out to find the “deepest, darkest jungle.”

Not only is it one of the cutest stories ever, there is ample opportunity to insert your own sound effects … swishy stick, scary jungle, animal characters. It’s also ripe for scaring the pants off your little one and then, giggling hysterically when you discover the scary jungle is really only one watermelon-eating, mischievous meerkat and a very thoughtful elephant.

Every time I read that book, I get all whimsy and think that we need to camp more often. Alas, I found the perils in reading.


Zigby Camps Out, by Brian Paterson (Ages 2-5)

In short: Good for campouts or a sweet spooky story for Halloween. If you are planning a camp out – bring the book and a watermelon. Back in the day, kid #1 was thrilled to find the watermelon “waiting” at the campsite. We told him that Ella must have left it for us.


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