GREENFIELD — Paula the penguin has a lot of new friends.

The African bird made a visit to Greenfield recently to meet hundreds of local children and their parents during an educational program at the Hancock County Public Library.

Representatives from the the WAVE Foundation, a nonprofit partner of the Newport Aquarium in Kentucky, taught kids about where penguins live, what they like to eat and the environmental dangers the animals face in wild.

More than 500 people in two sessions of the program were able to see Paula run around the library’s community room and pet her before saying goodbye.

Caitlin Stanley, who hosted the WAVE Foundation’s presentation, said the organization often travels throughout the Midwest to give kids an up-close look at the world’s creatures.

“We can inspire kids to work with animals,” she said.

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Caitlin VanOverberghe is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3237 or cvanoverberghe@greenfieldreporter.com.