Finding Bigfoot: “Big Rhodey” Tonight

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on January 8th, 2012

Tonight, the next episode of Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot series premieres at 10 pm Eastern.

Tonight’s episode, “Big Rhodey” deals with Bigfoot reports and evidence from Rhode Island.

Several pieces of evidence will be examined on tonight’s episode.

The bigfoot research team go to Rhode Island to examine video of a roadside sighting of a bigfoot. They learn that this unexplored area has a wealth of sasquatch activity and hope to prove that this small state is hiding bigfoots.

Amateur video shot in East Greenwhich, Rhode Island. Is there a bigfoot swinging from a tree as the car drives by?

Leominster couple’s eerie experience in state forest to be featured on Animal Planet show tonight


Bill and Julie Penning discuss finding what they believe to be a footprint of Bigfoot in the Leominster State Forrest in 2010.

LEOMINSTER — After a close encounter on a sultry summer day in June 2010, Bill and Julie Penning are believers in one of the most mythical creatures of North America.

“I believe I found footprints of Bigfoot,” Bill Penning said Friday.

Julie Penning is willing to debunk the Bigfoot legend, but she’s found no credible evidence to disprove what she and her husband found in the Leominster State Forest.

“If somebody can scientifically tell me what it is, I’ll listen,” Julie Penning said.

The rest of the country will get to hear their tale on Animal Planet’s “Finding Bigfoot” television show tonight at 10.

“I’m a little nervous about it,” Julie Penning said. “I haven’t told anyone at work.”

With the help of their friend Ronny Le Blanc, they took a plaster casting of what they believe is a Bigfoot’s footprint.

Julie Penning is a special education teacher at the Florence Sawyer School in Bolton, and Bill Penning is a facilities manager for Progress Software in Bedford.

In a city where the area around Jungle Road and Route 117 was once known as Monsterland and parents would scare their misbehaving children with stories of creatures walking on their hind legs in the woods, the thought of a Bigfoot roaming around at least fits, the couple said.

They each had the day off on June 27, 2010, and decided to a hike through the Leominster State Forest even though temperatures were soaring into the upper 90s because they figured it would be cooler than lying on the beach.

“We’re not out there looking for anything weird, we’re just hiking,” Bill Penning said.

He is an outdoorsman who hunts and rides four-wheelers but the couple took a wrong path in the woods as they walked toward Notown Reservoir.

Suddenly there was a loud crashing of something going through the nearby underbrush.

“I assumed we spooked a deer and it would jump out in front of us,” Bill Penning said.

But nothing came out on the trail and the couple kept going until reaching the power lines where they realized the underbrush blocked their way to the reservoir.

They sat down for lunch before doubling back.

When they reached the point at which they heard the noise earlier, there were large tracks of bare feet coming in and out of the brush line along with deer prints.

Photo Courtesy of Bill Penning A photo of the cast that was made from what Bill and Julie Penning believe to be a footprint of Bigfoot they found while hiking in the Leominster State Forest in 2010.

Neither set of prints had been there an hour earlier when they passed.

“They were so deep and so far apart it was shocking,” Bill Penning said of the footprints. “Who would be up there randomly on a Tuesday afternoon running barefoot?”

It appeared whatever made the prints weighed several hundred pounds with strides were about 6 1/2 feet long.

“Right where the footprints ended, the deer prints ended so we figured he scooped it up,” Bill Penning said.

The couple got so unnerved by the oddity of the sighting that Bill Penning picked up a rock for protection.

As they studied the tracks, the couple had the sense of being watched and left.

Bill Penning’s brother Kevin introduced them to Bigfoot believer Ronny Le Blanc about 10 days later.

Le Blanc has been interested in Bigfoot since he was a child reading about unexplained mysteries at Leominster Public Library.

“I’ve always been fascinated (but) never in my wildest dreams, with Monsterland in my backyard, did I imagine,” he said.

The three of them decided to go back to the area of the sighting to take pictures and get a plaster molding.

“Sure enough, the footprints are still there,” Bill Penning said.

Within minutes young people on four-wheelers came by and would have torn up the prints if the small expedition were not there to protect them.

They mixed the plaster too thin so rather than waiting for it to set, they dug up the ground around the print and took the dirt and drying plaster home.

The print is not only about 11 inches long but is nearly six inches wide.

“And this thing is a good 2 1/2 inches deep,” Le Blanc said.

Rather than being a static footprint, the print indicates whoever or whatever made it was pushing off as if in motion, Bill Penning said.

The print would indicate the Bigfoot is a female or adolescent.

Bigfoot researchers believe female prints are 10-14 inches and grown males are 17-19 inches, Bill Penning said.

He and Le Blanc took the casting to a town hall meeting of Bigfoot enthusiasts in Covington, R.I. that was arranged by Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization which is featured on the Animal Planet television show.

“I was the only one there with a footprint,” Bill Penning said.

Producer Aaron Steele was excited by the cast of the footprint and decided to bring the cast and crew to Leominster to film a re-enactment Sept. 15.

About 20 people spent a rainy day filming the segment with the Pennings and Le Blanc.

“This has been quite an adventure for us,” Bill Penning said.

Neither Steele nor the show’s lead investigator Matt Moneymaker could be reached for comment.

Source: Sentinel & Enterprise
By Jack Minch

About Craig Woolheater
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad, Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.

14 Responses to “Finding Bigfoot: “Big Rhodey” Tonight”

  1. EnormousFoot responds:

    They look like my footprints when I run with my Merrel trail glove shoes.

  2. Peter Von Berg responds:

    The word “fake” is totally inadequate to describe the awfulness of these videos. I won’t even get into the laughingly bad acting of the “witnesses”. I think I’ll just read a good book while these shows are on.

  3. EnormousFoot responds:

    In they first 10 minutes they did those ignorant calls and knocks again.

    Quote: “coyotes and bigfoots are always in the same areas.”

  4. Vpanoptes responds:

    Oh yes, no doubt somewhere in the vast wilderness of Rhode Island lurks an unknown-to-science 7′ hominin. Next episode – ‘squatch in the Big Apple!

  5. fuzzy responds:

    Oh Goody – my home state – lotsa woods and water!

  6. CDC responds:

    BoBo claims to have seen a Bigfoot, and the other team members outside of Ranae all are firm believers in Bigfoot. It would seem if this were true, they would actually try and find evidence for this creature…the way they are doing it now, it’s not going to happen.

    They have done what, 10 – 15 shows by now? Traveling to several different states looking for the animal. Following leads. Investigating pictures and videos. Listening to eyewitness accounts.

    I have written to Animal Planet and expressed my thoughts that it would seem only scientific and logical for this team of “researchers” to stay in one place and remain there until solid evidence can be found. To travel from state to state hoping to find any actual evidence is frankly stupid.

    If they were to remain in the Pacific Northwest, for example, and would have filmed those same 10 or 15 episodes from the a coordinated general 100 mile area where the animal has been reportedly seen, “IF” the animal exists, that would give them the best chance to prove it.

    The idea that they run from state to state, remote forest to remote forest tells me that Animal Planet just wants to sell their little show all across the country…like a traveling circus.

    I used to enjoy watching Cliff and BoBo for entertainment as they seemed like pretty good guys. Now, with their constant ridiculous comments, I don’t watch anymore. I know the show has tons of viewers, but that tells us more about the people who watch…than the quality of the show.

    I didn’t watch tonight but I bet it was 55 minutes of hype and dramatic music, and 5 minutes of thermal images of nothing. That’s been the story of all the other episodes, and I doubt anything will ever change.

    Yes “researchers”, if you REALLY want to “FIND BIGFOOT”, move to Bluff Creek, travel up and down the Trinity River, do 10 – 15 shows from that area over 2 years, if Bigfoot exists, you will find the “evidence” to prove it…I can promise you, you are crazy if you thought you would find a Bigfoot in Rhode Island.

    Just my opinion.

  7. viking0047 responds:

    Could have been the worst show EVER…absolutely nothing got accomplished except me being bored to death.

  8. Redrose999 responds:

    I was very disappointed in their video analysis. If you look at the video, it looks like a tall stump as the car drives by. That stump was behind Bobo and they didn’t even give it a boo. I wish they had video tapped the scene as they drove before they put Bobo in the shot as a control group, than compared the tree videos. I think they would have discovered it was a HUGE hoax. I wish they’d give Ranae more of a chance to run debunking experiments.

    With that said. It was annoying but entertaining. I really enjoyed Cliff’s stint in the woods, the Owl bit was very exciting and informative. Thank you Cliff!

  9. Redrose999 responds:

    Oops, three videos, not tree videos! LOL

  10. littlefeat responds:

    Why the deception? Bill and Julie Penning’s footprint discovery occurred in Leominster, Massachusetts which is north of Worcester and closer to the New Hampshire border than the Rhode Island border. I understand that this particular show is about Rhode Island but to present this incident as occurring in Rhode Island (it is shown plotted on their map occurring in north western RI) is deceptive to say the least.

  11. fuzzy responds:

    Oh My!

    If we remember that the name of the show is “Finding Bigfoot”, perhaps we can accept that anything that happens on the show, whether you like it or not, IS about finding Bigfoot, in all its complexity and redundancies and color and grainy green.

    If we extend that thought to all the stuff we DON’T see – the communications, negotiations, logistics, planning, arrangements, travel, local preliminary work etc – we find that it’s ALL about the main activity: finding Bigfoot. But a line has to be drawn somewhere between what is Show material and what is not, and what video to include in the 44 minutes that will appeal to the most viewers. They could easily do an entire 44 minutes of Cliff sitting alone in the dark – wouldn’t make good video, but it WOULD depict one aspect of the quest.

    So, we can assume that not everything that ends up in the Show will satisfy every viewer’s expectations and standards, and that there will be unacceptable material and techniques and activities included, and rampant dissatisfaction in the reviews.

    Sure, there are dozens of alternative ways to do the Show, but this is what they have presented to us, and it IS all about the name of the Show – sooner or later, there may be a Show called “Bigfoot Found!”, but first we have to Find them!

    Grab your gear and go sit in the woods in the dark for one hour.

    You’ll see.

  12. weaponx88 responds:

    Why is it that EVERYTHING they investigate is undoubtedly a bigfoot??? A human foot print…a bigfoot! A footprint from a shoe…..a bigfoot! Enhanced noises in the night….a bigfoot! Blurry video of a tree stump…..a bigfoot!

    Show should be called “Finding Your Imagination Gone Wild”

    Oh…..and that blurry video has got to be one of the worse hoaxes I have ever seen. The 2 gals were not even remotely believable.

  13. DWA responds:


    You’re saying what I have been saying for a long time.

    It’s worked too many times; and if it were tried in an area of many recent sightings we’d probably know, sooner rather than later. Go on stakeout in an area where there have been numerous reports recently, and stay there until you get either proof or enough evidence to tell you that if you come back later with x, y and/or z, you’ll get your proof soon enough.

    Why don’t they get one of these “Survivor”ists like Bear Grylls to perform a true service for a change, to do a show like this – a “Finding Bigfoot” that does what one needs to do to find it? You don’t need Ph.Ds whose heads are so big they can’t even walk. Jane Goodall wasn’t a scientist; and she’s gone on to generate about 90% of what we know about chimpanzees. Obviously the search needs to be science driven; but what’s truly important is someone who is intelligent; persistent; perceptive; able to live and travel backwoods with periodic resupply; and takes really good notes. (Photo skills wouldn’t hurt either.)

    All this hopping around is symptomatic of the critical affliction of both the skeptic and proponent fringes: they tug and pull at bits and pieces of the evidence, rather than looking at the breadth and depth of it, and formulating rational search strategies.

  14. muircertach responds:

    How about they investigate the large amount of bigfoot sightings that take place with UFO sightings? Could be a very good show.

Sorry. Comments have been closed.

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