Turns out, everybody loves going to the Oklahoma City Zoo.
The zoo celebrated a milestone recently when it tallied up attendance for the 2011-12 fiscal year. The zoo recorded 989,622 visitors, making the year the highest attendance ever in its 108-year history.
“But this particular year is one for the record books without one specific reason,” zoo officials said in a news release. “The Zoo has enjoyed sensational success over the last twelve months without opening a major new attraction.”
The previous record of 982,721 was set last year.
“This accomplishment is the result of a tremendous amount of hard work from devoted staff, ZooFriends, Trustees and community partners,” Executive Director Dwight Scott said in a statement. “We are incredibly thankful to Oklahoma City taxpayers for their ongoing support so we can continue to improve the Zoo, provide quality experiences for our guests and increase our conservation efforts.”
Well THAT’S adorable.
Who can hear the familiar notes of the Beatles’ classic, “Yellow Submarine,” without feeling like the ocean is nearby? Patrons of the upcoming Symphony by the Sea, 6:00 p.m., August 25, 2012 will have the closest substitute in the Oklahoma Aquarium. Symphony by the Sea is a cooperative fundraiser to benefit the educational programs of both the Aquarium and Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, and specifically Symphony by the Sea for Students. The collaborative program immerses school children in arts and science education by introducing them to both classical music and aquatic life. Since joining forces in 2010, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra and Oklahoma Aquarium have educated and entertained more than 3,000 students through stations such as Brass by the Boat and Sharks and Strings.
Adult patrons of the upcoming fundraiser are treated to similar ambience, with the opportunity to dine alongside the shark tank, coral reef or other exhibits. A premier silent auction will be offered throughout the Aquarium Galleries while Tulsa Symphony Orchestra musicians provide the soundtrack for the evening. The musical entertainment will continue with a concert in the Aquarium Great Hall. “Selections from an Octopus’s Garden” will highlight classical, theatrical, and popular music.
The Aquarium and Symphony are pleased to recognize Becky Frank, Chairman of the Tulsa Metro Chamber, as this year’s Honorary Chair of Symphony by the Sea. Frank’s tireless dedication to promoting the Greater Tulsa region by fostering a spirit of regional cooperation through cultural tourism and economic development make her the ideal honoree.
Sponsor tables and tickets are now offered at the following levels: Conductors and Captains, $15,000; Sharks and Strings, $10,000; Reeds and Reef, $5,000; Brass and Bass, $2,500; Paddlefish and Percussion, $1,500; Mermaids and Musicians, $250 per couple. Reservations can be made by contacting Janis Davis, 528-1555, firstname.lastname@example.org. The Oklahoma Aquarium and Tulsa Symphony Orchestra are both 501 (c) 3 non-profit organizations.
Admission is free to the Oklahoma City Zoo on July 17. Here’s some more information from the good folks at the zoo:
We thank you, Oklahoma City Zoo supporters, for all you do! Tuesday, July 17, 2012, marks the twenty-second anniversary of the 1/8 of a cent dedicated sales tax being passed by Oklahoma City citizens for the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden, and to celebrate, the Zoo is offering free admission to all on Tuesday, July 17.
Passed by Oklahoma City citizens in 1990, the sales tax has made numerous capitol improvements possible at the Zoo including Great EscApe, Cat Forest/Lion Overlook, the main entrance facility, the Canopy Food Court, Oklahoma Trails, the Children’s Zoo and the Elephant Habitat. Moving forward the sales tax will help fund a new animal hospital slated to open in 2014.
“We are extremely grateful to the citizens of Oklahoma City for their ongoing dedication to the Zoo. The significant support we receive from the community enables the Zoo to continue to grow and strive for excellence in our mission of conservation, education, research and recreation; while becoming a world class attraction that Oklahomans are proud to call their zoo.” said Dwight Scott, Executive Director/CEO.
Take advantage of the free admission and make plans to visit the Zoo on Sales Tax Appreciation Day, Tuesday, July 17. Group reservations are not required. Regular prices apply for all rides and attractions.
Visit Oklahoma’s #1 attraction and one of the top three zoos in the country as named in the 2012 10Besties Readers’ Choice Travel Awards. The Oklahoma City Zoo is a proud member of Oklahoma City’s Adventure District located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35. Admission is $8 for adults, $5 for children ages three-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free.
Now through August 26, the Zoo is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for Morning Zoo Rise. Guests can take advantage of our late Saturdays through September 1, and stay and play until 8 p.m. All guests must leave grounds at closing. Become a Zoo fan at http://www.facebook.com/okczoobg or follow us on Twitter @okczoo. To learn more about these and other happenings, call (405) 424-3344 or visit okczoo.com.
I say the hogs are the winners in the cuteness category.
Here’s some information about how to help a great cause by going out and having fun:
Help save the worldwide population of rhinos with the simple roll of a bowling ball. Bowling for Rhinos is back! Join the Oklahoma City Zoo’s chapter of the American Association of Zoo Keepers (AAZK) as they host the 18th annual Bowling for Rhinos on Saturday, July 21, 2012. The cost is $25 per person which includes shoe rental, bowling from 6 to 10 p.m., a T-shirt and fabulous door prize opportunities. Get your bowling on and join us at AMF Boulevard Lanes, 3501 S. Boulevard in Edmond.
Bowling for Rhinos is an annual event which raises funds for rhino conservation in Asia and Africa. Out of 100 species that roamed the Earth, only five exist today, and all are considered endangered. Extinction is a very real possibility for these gentle giants, unless conservation actions are made to help preserve them. More than 60 organizations in the U.S. and Canada pair with AAZK to help participate in Bowling for Rhinos with the Oklahoma City Zoo being one of the largest contributors. The Zoo has raised over $237,000 through its Bowling For Rhinos events with all proceeds directly benefiting rhinos in the wild.
Bowling for Rhinos is a local tradition with a global impact. To pre-register call (405) 424-3344 or email email@example.com. Registrations the night of the event will be accepted. Teams and individuals may participate. If you do not wish to bowl but would like to help, make your donations to “AAZK Bowling for Rhinos” 2101 NE 50th, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73111. For more information about Bowling For Rhinos and rhino conservation visit www.aazkbfr.org. Let’s raise it for the rhinos–and help preserve all five remaining species while there’s still time.
I spy bowling fun for everyone. The Oklahoma City Zoo is Oklahoma’s #1 attraction and one of the top three zoos in the country as named in the 2012 10Besties Readers’ Choice Travel Awards! A proud member of Oklahoma City’s Adventure District, the Zoo is located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35. Hours of operation from July 1 through August 26 are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Buildings close at 4:45 p.m. daily. Stay late and play on Saturdays now through September 1 as the Zoo is open until 8 p.m. with exhibit buildings closing at 7:45 p.m. All guests must exit zoo grounds at closing. Zoo admission is $8 for adults, $5 for children ages three-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free. Become a Zoo fan at http://www.facebook.com/okczoobg or follow us on Twitter @okczoo. To learn more about these and other happenings, call (405) 424-3344 or visit okczoo.com.
One Oklahoma City council member is hinting that way. Ward 2 Councilman Ed Shadid brought the issue up about the zoo’s 1/8 cent sales tax at a recent city council meeting. The tigeres roared. Read the full story here. What do you think?
Want to think about something adorable?
A shower for kittens.
I know. I know. Adorable.
If you want to help homeless, helpless, adorable kittens, here’s how:
If babies get gifts during baby showers, why not give newborn kittens gifts too? The community is invited to a kitten shower for shelter newborns from noon to 3 p.m. on June 9 at Oklahoma City’s Animal Shelter, 2811 SE 29.
Every year thousands of un-weaned kittens and puppies arrive on the steps of Oklahoma City’s Animal Shelter in need of tender love and care. The newborns and shelter staff rely on volunteer foster parents to nurture them until they are old enough to be adopted, which is eight weeks.
Although it’s a “kitten” shower, the Shelter’s puppies have a few needs too. Shower gifts for these future companions include canned and dry kitten and puppy food, kitty litter, litter boxes and scoops, baby bottles, Esbilac kitten and puppy formula, toys, puppy pads, Pedialyte, pet shampoo, Dawn dish soap, pet carriers and towels.
Those interested in fostering kittens can contact Katie Nix at Katie.firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Oklahoma City Animal Shelter is open from noon to 5:45 p.m. every day except holidays at SE 29 & Bryant, 1.5 miles east of Interstate 35. Adoptable pets can be viewed online at http://www.okc.gov/animalwelfare/adoption.html
Toba, a Sumatran orangutan at the Oklahoma City Zoo, showed her support for the University of Oklahoma softball team Monday. In fact, it was slightly scary. She will eat you, Alabama. (OK, maybe she won’t eat you, but she will definitely not be cheering for you.)
The elephant exhibit at the Oklahoma City Zoo is no longer the biggest in the country.
The Denver Zoo unveiled its newest exhibit, the Toyota Elephant Passage, to the public June 1. The 10-acre Asian elephant exhibit is the largest in the country — taking the title from the Oklahoma City Zoo elephant exhibit.
The Asian elephant area in Oklahoma City is 9½ acres. It cost $13 million to build and opened last March.
While we may not be the biggest any more, our exhibit is still pretty darn fantastic. In fact, here’s some proof from The Oklahoman archives: