For a solid week in summer 2019, you couldn't turn on the Chicago news without hearing about the "Humboldt Park alligator."

On July 9th, 2019, an alligator roughly five feet in length was found swimming in the lagoon in Chicago's Humboldt Park neighborhood. The situation was as baffling as the story was gripping.

The website "Block Club Chicago" took a poll to determine a name for the creature. The winner was "Chance the Snapper," a nod to Chicago-area rapper and philanthropist Chance the Rapper. The name beat out some other gems like "Ruth Gator Ginsberg" and "Croc Obama."

No disrespect to Chance, but I voted for "Croc Obama" at the time.

The Chicago alligator was named after Chance the Rapper, a Chicago native. Photo Credit: Kevin Winter, Getty Images.
The Chicago alligator was named after Chance the Rapper, a Chicago native. Photo Credit: Kevin Winter, Getty Images.
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While it was never determined exactly how or why Chance found his way to Chicago, experts opined that he was likely an illegal pet before being released into the lagoon. There's no way he would've survived Chicago winters if he hadn't been captured swiftly. Chance was finally nabbed a week after he was first spotted, and tests revealed he was in good health. He was also reported to be between four and six years old.

Chance was sent to live on an alligator farm in Saint Augustine, FL that same summer. Just this week, we got an update on how he's doing.

Chance's keeper, Frank Robb of Crocodilian Specialist Services in Saint Augustine, stated that the dude has "been bulking up." He also billed him as "the most serious" gator on his farm. Chance continues to attract visitors from all over the country. Predictably, many Chicagoans trek down to pay him a visit.

Shoutout to Block Club Chicago for keeping us posted. If you find yourself in any Chicagoland gift shops, you will likely find a mug or a shirt with Chance on it too!

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