Three Little Pigs Star in ‘Barnyard’ Play

Evelyn Rudie and Chris DeCarlo have taken a few liberties with the classic story of three little pigs in their “Barnyard Madness With Three Little Pigs,” which opens Sunday at the Santa Monica Playhouse, 1211 4th St.

“We bring our shows to the schools and one of the themes that the teachers ask us to write about is people learning to accept differences in each other,” Rudie says. Using an inter-species theme (pigs and wolves) rather than an inter-racial one, Rudie and DeCarlo take a lighthearted, musical approach.

In this version, the three little McPigs are Minerva, Maybelle and Magnolia, who take the money from their truck-stop diner to build three houses, a plan foiled by two visiting wolf cousins. “These are zany, but not scary wolves,” Rudie points out.

The horseshoe-shaped theater has only 88 seats, so everyone has a good view. The hourlong performance includes an intermission when free cookies and punch are served.


Sunday’s performance is at 3 p.m., and the play will continue on Saturdays and Sundays (1 and 3 p.m. performances most days) through March. Reservations are suggested: (213) 394-9779. Tickets are $5.


Winter at the Zoo--The Los Angeles Zoo begins its weeklong Winter Wildland today with five reindeer (four adults and a yearling, Zoodolph) on special exhibit. Another Zoodolph, this one in costume and standing on two legs, will pose for photographs with youngsters. The photos are $2 if they take them with an instant camera or free if you use your own.

Children can get the feel of what it’s like to have antlers by making a pair of their own out of heavy paper.


Also scheduled are the Zoopeteers (the zoo’s resident puppet troupe) at 11:30 a.m., 12:30 and 3:30 p.m.), a special holiday version of the World of Birds show (11:30 a.m., 1:30 and 3:30 p.m.), strolling mimes and other entertainers.

Winter Wildland will continue through Jan. 3. The zoo is at 5333 Zoo Drive at the Golden State Freeway. Winter hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $4.50 for adults. $1.50 for children. Information: (213) 666-4650.


Nature Walk--Cheseboro Canyon is at its best this time of year--perfect for a family walk through the green, oak-studded chaparral. A slow-paced, three-mile, two-hour walk begins at 10:15 a.m. Sunday when a Sierra Club leader will talk about how the soils and geology of the area contribute to the vegetation. Bring lunch and water. To reach Cheseboro Canyon, take the Cheseboro Road exit from the Ventura Freeway. At the end of the ramp, turn right on Palo Comado Road, then right again on Cheseboro Road to park. Information: (818) 888-3770.


Send items at least two weeks before event (Saturday and Sunday events only) to Family Spots, View Section, Los Angeles Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles 90053. Phone calls will not be accepted. All items must include dates, exact address, phone number, times and ticket prices.