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Twiggy The Famous Waterskiing Squirrel Makes Adorable Appearance At Mall Of America

Image shows Twiggy the Waterskiing Squirrel skiing behind a remote-controlled boat.

Twiggy, the Waterskiing Squirrel, is working hard to advocate for water safety. Twiggy began waterskiing in 1978. I know you think squirrels don’t live that long, and you’re correct. The current Twiggy is number 11 or 12 in a long line of waterskiing wonders. Twiggy recently appeared at the Mall of America in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The original Twiggy was an animal rescue. In 1978, Chuck and Lou Ann Best found and rescued the tiny squirrel after a rainstorm. The waterskiing came later. One year, Chuck gifted his daughter a remote-controlled boat. He played with it so much that his friends teased him about buying it for himself. He jokingly replied, “I have to learn to drive the boat so I can teach my squirrel to water ski!”

Thus, the idea of Twiggy the Waterskiing Squirrel was born from that joke. Twiggy’s first performance was in September 1979. Since then, the amazing little squirrel has appeared at events worldwide. In addition to waterskiing, Twiggy learned the art of hang gliding and could ride in a helicopter.

Image shows a squirrel water skiing behind a remote-controlled boat.
Image from Instagram.

The Best family did not limit their animal training to Twiggy. The pair also trained other animals to waterski, including two French poodles, two miniature horses, a black cat, a toad, and a smart little squirrel named Ollie, who learned to ride a Jet Ski. At one point, the family trained a trio of squirrels to ski in a pyramid with an act named “Lights, Camera, Action.”

Twiggy The Waterskiing Squirrel May “Live” Forever

Chuck passed away in 1997. Lou Ann resumed training with Twiggy IV in 1998 to continue the family business. Because Chuck died by drowning after suffering a heart attack, Lou Ann began focusing Twiggy the Waterskiing Squirrel’s act on water safety. Lou Ann made Twiggy a Personal Floatation Device (PFD) to promote water safety. Twiggy is an ambassador for the National Safe Boating Council’s Safe Boating Campaign. Twiggy has encouraged millions of boaters to wear PFD safety vests.

Image shows Twiggy the Waterskiing Squirrel skis behind a remote-controlled boat.
Image from Instagram.

Lou Ann and Twiggy VIII have retired. Lou Ann is working on a memoir, and there is the hope that Twiggy’s story will one day make it to the big screen. Chuck Best Jr. has taken over the family business. Twiggy has been declared an official spokes animal for The National Safe Boating Council’s “Wear It” Campaign. Twiggy XI appeared at the New England Boat Show several months ago. The family continues to train squirrels and promote water safety. You can follow the continuing adventures of Twiggy on their Instagram channel.

You can find the source of this story’s featured image here.

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