PETA Offers to Help Repair Lucy the Elephant, But There's a Catch | NBC 10 Philadelphia

A little mind candy for the middle of your day

PETA Offers to Help Repair Lucy the Elephant, But There's a Catch

Lucy the Elephant, a six-story oddity that was built by a real estate developer in 1881 in the hopes that it somehow would attract property buyers to this Atlantic City suburb, stands near the beach in Margate, N.J.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has offered to help complete major repairs to Lucy the Elephant, one of New Jersey’s historic landmarks, that is in dire need of an overhaul.

But the organization wants something in return: The ability to send a message to the elepant's visitors.

PETA has offered to contribute toward the estimated $58,000 repair bill to fix holes and crumbling wood on the 134-year-old Margate beachside attraction. In return, though, PETA is asking that Lucy be "decorated" with a message about the unfair treatment of elephants in zoos — an allegation that PETA says it's substantiated through extensive investigation.

"PETA's offer is a win-win proposition: Not only would it help repair a unique piece of historical Americana, it'd also help call attention to the plight of elephants trapped in the circus," PETA’s President Ingrid Newkirk said in a news release.

Newkirk wrote a letter to Richard Helfant, Lucy the Elephant CEO and Executive Director, saying “as a beloved icon, Lucy would be an excellent ‘spokes-elephant’ for her ‘friends’ in the circus who face only pain and isolation.”

According to their website, PETA “operates under the simple principle that animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, or use for entertainment."