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Oregon Zoo elephant
An elephant at the Oregon Zoo in Portland enjoys the abundance of snow on Wednesday. (Oregon Zoo via Twitter)

Something about big snowstorms in Portland brings out the best in viral video makers. It must be the rare nature of such a weather event for Oregon’s largest city.

A major storm that hit the city Tuesday night and into Wednesday left up to a foot of snow on the ground — the most in the region since 2008, according to The Associated Press. But while motorists and businesses struggled with the accumulation, animals at the Oregon Zoo were caught acting like school kids given the day off.

A video posted to the zoo’s Facebook page was viewed almost 9 million times and shared by another 235,000 users. On Twitter, the video attracted 16,000 likes. A polar bear, some seals, an otter and an elephant were all captured running and sliding and chomping at the fresh powder.

The zoo was closed on Thursday due to all the snow. That didn’t stop two otters named Tilly and B.C. from putting on a show in another video.

Frolicking zoo animals proved to be a little less chaotic than viral videos that have emerged from Portland after previous winter storms. A quick search of my YouTube favorites found a couple classics that I had a hard time not watching again when I heard the Rose City had turned white.

Joggers got “more than they bargained for” during a storm in 2014. Not sure if that video headline refers to the nasty fall this woman takes or the 1.4 million views the video has received over time.

And in 2007, a video shot from up above the street has proven to be a classic for anyone who has cursed the way Northwesterners drive when snow hits the streets.

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