Snowflake Almost Ready for Adoring Public

Germany's new polar cub sensation is growing up fast
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 14, 2008 12:16 PM CDT
A polar bear cuddly toy named Flocke is presented at the booth of German manufacturer Steiff at the Toy Fair in Nuremberg, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 7, 2008.   (AP Photo/Eckehard Schulz)
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(Newser) – Nuremberg’s favorite polar bear club is growing up fast and should be ready for her public debut by April, Der Spiegel reports. Little Snowflake has already passed through such coming-of-age rituals as her first bone, her first trip outdoors, and a much-needed first bath. Before the bath, Snowflake was apparently a decidedly smelly bear, keepers say.

For now, Snowflake is being kept away from a public anxiously following every detail of the cub's childhood. Her trips outside are limited to an open-air enclosure off limits to spectators. But when she debuts in April, bear fanatics will be waiting, with many flying in on special "Visit Snowflake" travel packages designed for the occasion.