Mirage Roar: Three New Lion Cubs Debut

Freedom, Timba-Masai, and Madiba join Siegfried & Roy's Secret Garden.

Siegfried & Roy

MAJESTIC BEAUTY: The terms "bright" and "blinking" and "neon" and "fast" tend to show up in a lot of copy dealing with Las Vegas, and not without reason. Sin City is very au courant, incredibly flashy, and if one sign isn't garnering your attention then another giant screen down the Strip is doing so, very well. Which means finding a place of respite, whether it is among the pink birds of The Flamingo or inside the Bellagio Conservatory and Botanical Gardens can be an essential part of any trip spent along Las Vegas Boulevard. One of the biggest natural draws on the Strip is behind the manmade volcano at The Mirage. Nope, we speak not of the landscaping, as lush and as impressive though it is, but rather Siegfried & Roy's Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat, which is home to some 30 endangered animals. Those beasties are getting three more residents, and residents truly don't come more roly, poly, or awww-worthy: A trio of lion cubs from Johannesburg, South Africa made their debut at the much-cooed-over habitat on Friday, July 18.

BRING ON THE FANS: We weren't employing too much poetic license on the "roly" nor the "poly" front: Freedom, Timba-Masai, and Madiba are just over 12 weeks old, which translates into paws that seem larger than they do and wee roars and all of those quintessential cub-like qualities. Roy spoke of the cubs, saying "These boys, our newest Lion Kings, are truly our Ambassadors of Conservation and Preservation... Millions of people each year visit the Secret Garden and are awed by these gentle creatures," continued Siegfried. "One by one, we are raising awareness for the plight of rare and endangered animals, our true mission." Want to have a peek at the cubs? You can see them daily from noon to 4 p.m. The habitat is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays.

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