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Dino Girl brings Jurassic era fun to the community

'Even the cashier took selfies serving Dino Girl coffee! Stuff like that gets you smiling and laughing. It's harmless and funny and it sometimes makes peoples day'

Rooted is all about the people and the places that make us proud to call our community home.  

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You might have seen her dancing up a storm with Sarge and the kids at Ribfest a few weekends ago. Dino Girl is here in North Bay to bring joy, laughs and fun to everyone at local events.  

“I bought the costume because I've always wanted to do jokes and pranks on people,” she says. “I'm that kind of person with a crazy sense of humor.” 

Wanting to keep her identity hidden and only being referred to as Kendall, Dino Girl says the idea came to her during the pandemic.  

“I had the opportunity to do small telegrams and drop by people, visiting them outside of their homes,” she says. 

“I would stand near the doorway or windows and have random dancing parties with music going up and down the driveways! Dropping off birthday gifts at the doorstep in costume!” 

Kendall says she loved the reaction she was getting from making people laugh and it gained more attention.  

“I was just doing these little gigs for my friend's birthdays and random people and they loved it! They would give hugs whenever they needed it. The fact I was literally in my own bubble helped with the safety measures of COVID-19 and it helped make their day,” says Kendall.  

 Kendall says she started to think she could do this as a side job. “For the past two years, Dino Girl has become a bit of a North Bay icon for community events,” she says.  

“Eventually I did my own advertisements on Facebook to see if people would like to have different results for activities. Slowly it started to gain small clients and customers.” 

Kendall says it was a big boost to her income as her full-time job as a photographer and artist was taking a hit during the pandemic.  

“Selling my artwork wasn't enough to get by,” she says. 

“I would attend often at the vendors’ and farmers' markets within our community and I missed that connection. I even got severely depressed since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Being social was a way of public communication with advertising.” 

But she says being Dino Girl allowed her to work around those conditions.  

“I was safe and in my own bubble and it was a great opportunity in uncertain times.” 

She caught the attention of shoppers last year when she was asked to go around to different businesses and simply do some ordinary shopping, but there was nothing ordinary about seeing a big purple dinosaur in your local Sobeys.   

“I was in the costume and people started to notice there's a big purple dino walking in the aisles,” she says.  

“The manager was laughing so hard they requested selfies! Even the employees started coming up to ask and take pictures while working in masks.” 

Kendall says her sister joined in the fun that day, also donning a costume, and was even asked to help the staff.   

“We gained a lot of attention towards the cashout. 

I kindly assisted with bagging some items and they allowed it. Pretending to be a cashier assistant, it was epic!” 

Kendall says they also stopped in at Dollarama and went through the Tim Hortons drive-through.  

“People kept on coming up to take pictures. Even the cashier took selfies serving Dino Girl coffee! Stuff like that gets you smiling and laughing. It's harmless and funny and it sometimes makes people's day.” 

One question that most people wonder about is – is the costume hot? 

“Yes,” says Kendall.  

 “It's very hot in there! Even though it's run by a small machine to get the flow going, there's hardly any air to circulate.” 

She says recently she was asked to attend North Bay Rib Fest to make an appearance and the temperatures soared above 36 degrees.  

“I was in the costume for 3/1'2 hours at the waterfront roaming around drenched in sweat! Kinda gross!” says Kendall.  

“Even my assistant was getting overheated that day but we kept on going. Giving hi-fives to young children and freaking them out was hysterical. Their reactions are always priceless. We had random dance-offs and sat next to strangers while they were eating ribs and asking if Dino Girl could have a bite. It got people laughing and that’s what my job is to do.” 

Kendall says she feels like that has become her calling in life.  

“I've been through more than my fair share of loss and grief that I wish upon no one,” she says.  

“Dino Girl is a way of self-expression. Even though they have no idea who I am. they just see Dino Girl and that brings them laughter which is key to life and getting through hard times. It's okay to have fun. It's okay to be yourself and enjoy the little moments in life!” 

Kendall says she is open to doing all kinds of public events such as birthday parties, anniversaries, weddings, hospital visits, office pranks, and more.  

“We can strive hard enough to make things happen, so why not give Dino Girl a chance to shine.” 

If you have a story for the "Rooted" series, send Matt an email at m.sookram@outlook.com 


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Matt Sookram

About the Author: Matt Sookram

Matthew Sookram is a Canadore College graduate. He has lived and worked in North Bay since 2009 covering different beats; everything from City Council to North Bay Battalion.
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