Prince George Has a Playdate, and It’s Adorable

By ABC News

Apr 9, 2014 12:31pm

ABC News’ Carolyn Durand, Cecilia Vega and Scott Shulman report:

Prince George crawled and played his way to a series of firsts today, his first major royal engagement on his first overseas trip with his parents, Prince William and Kate Middleton, in New Zealand.

The young prince, just eight-months-old, held court, literally, at a playgroup held in his honor in Wellington, New Zealand, the first official stop on the Royal family’s three and a half week tour of Australia and New Zealand.

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The playgroup, held at Wellington’s Government House, was organized by the non-profit childcare group Plunket and included a diverse mix of first-time parents and babies around George’s age, all specially selected to show New Zealand’s diverse society.  The group of first-time parents included two gay dads, one of whom, Jared Mullen, is an American from Oregon.

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“We’re happy to be part of a diverse group of families sharing our parenting experiences with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge,” Mullen told ABC News.

A sweet and curious George was in fine form during the playgroup, drumming a tambourine, grabbing his mother’s hair and owning the show.

“He’s a lovely little boy, very intrepid,” one of the dads said of George.

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George, wearing “sailboat smocked dungarees” by the British designer Rachel Riley over a white collared shirt, was accompanied to his playgroup by his mom, Kate, wearing a Tory Burch dress, and his dad, Prince William.

The playdate was the public’s first real glimpse of the bubbly and growing little Prince, who has four to five little teeth visible.

Prince George’s playdate was a modern version of his father’s “royal crawl about” 31 years ago, when Prince William himself traveled Down Under as a 9-month-old with his own parents, Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana.

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While the Duke and Duchess were slightly overshadowed by their royal offspring, Kate and William made sure George played nice.

“He owned the place basically,” one parent attendee said of George.  “He went into the middle of the circle of toys.  He hunted for the biggest toy [and] propped himself up.”

Prince William admitted he’s a regular on daddy duty for George, preparing his son’s nightly bottle and putting him to bed every night.

George will reportedly remain in Wellington under the care of his nanny, Maria Teresa Turrion Borrallo, as his parents make day trips around the country in the coming days.

On Thursday, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will attend a wreath laying ceremony at a war memorial in Blenheim and later tour one of the world’s largest collections of World War One aircraft and rare memorabilia.

Kate and William will get a chance for a date night out later that evening at a State Reception in their honor at Wellington’s a Government House, where William will also unveil a portrait his grandmother, the Queen.

 

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