City of Saskatoon Press Release June 27, 2012


The Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo is pleased to announce that the two lion cubs born at the Zoo on September 24, 2011, have been officially named Nathan (male cub) and Shadow (female cub).  The winning entry selected for the “Name the Cubs” contest was submitted by ten year old Johnathan McLeod of Saskatoon. 

Johnathan’s entry form was accompanied by a heartfelt letter explaining the meaning behind the names he selected.  The name Nathan was chosen in honour of Johnathan’s cousin, Nathan, who passed away in 2010 of leukemia at the age of six.  Shadow was the name of Nathan’s stuffed animal that he brought along to his many doctor appointments, chemotherapy treatments, and surgeries.  Johnathan has fond memories of visiting the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo with his cousin Nathan and their family. 

In his letter Johnathan wrote, “The lion cubs should be named Nathan and Shadow because our Nathan was brave and strong like a lion.  When he had to go for surgeries and chemo Nathan had to be really brave and strong, but sometimes he would get upset and roar like a lion!!!”

Johnathan will receive a prize package that includes a one-year family membership to the Saskatoon Zoo Society, a framed photo of the lion cubs, and two plush lion toys.  An official presentation will take place on Thursday, June 28, 2012, at 4:00 p.m. in front of the Zoo’s PotashCorp Ark exhibit.  Media and Zoo patrons are welcome to attend. 

The “Name the Cubs” contest ran from April 24 to June 1, 2012, and received over 2,800 entries.  Submissions were carefully reviewed by judges from the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo, Saskatoon Zoo Society, Saskatoon Zoo Foundation, and PotashCorp.

"It was very difficult to select just one entry with all of the fantastic names that were submitted," said John Moran, Manager of the Forestry Farm Park & Zoo "we were very pleased to see the number of people who took part in this special contest.”

Nathan and Shadow are currently enjoying life as a pride with their parents, Dobi and Cooey, in the PotashCorp Ark exhibit at the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo.  The lion family will remain in Saskatoon until October 2012, when they will then be returned to their permanent home in Ontario.

For more information on the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo, please visit or call 975-3382.

Saskatoon Zoo Society members support our worthwhile environmental education programs. Admission to the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park Zoo is just one of the perks of your annual membership fee!

Everyone is welcome to Adopt-a-Critter. It is a wild and unusual gift that shows you care. Donations are used to enhance the living conditions of the animals at the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo and to fund the educational programs of the Saskatoon Zoo Society.