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News Source: The Courier-Mail (6th January 2007)
by Glenis Green
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STEVE Irwin would have been proud. Mum Terri certainly was, whistling and cheering as their daughter Bindi took centre stage at the family’s Australia Zoo at Beerwah on the Sunshine Coast yesterday for the first time since her famous father’s death.

It was a milestone for the Irwins four months after the Crocodile Hunter died after his heart was pierced by a stingray barb while filming in the waters off Port Douglas.

They had endured the shock of his death, put on brave faces during an outpouring of grief and fended off criticism that Bindi, at age 8, should not try to follow in her father’s footsteps.

But a natural performer, Bindi silenced the critics yesterday with a high-energy performance of her Bindi and The Crocmen show before a crowd of more than 5000.

Singing and dancing in the Crocoseum where Irwin so often thrilled the crowds with his crocodile-feeding antics, Bindi had the crowd clapping and dancing, with hundreds of children leaving their seats to copy her moves. In the stands Terri, family friend and manager John Stainton and Zoo Director Wes Mannion applauded loudly – at one point with tears in their eyes.

Before the show Bindi told The Courier-Mail: “It’s so good because I get to get up and dance again – like, my passion is singing and dancing and saving wildlife and I think it’s so nice that I can sing and dance about wildlife,” she said.

She said she was sad but feeling “OK” in the wake of her father’s death.

“I miss my dad a lot, but I know he’s going to be there to guide me,” she said.

Bindi’s show will continue at the Zoo until Tuesday.

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