Lions

Media Contact

Candice Rennels | (405) 425-0298 | crennels@okczoo.org
 


OKC Zoo News Releases

MAY HAPPENINGS AT THE OKC ZOO

FRIDAY, APRIL 30: OKLAHOMA CITY CULTURE BOXES BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND

Oklahoma City Culture Boxes are back by popular demand. These one-of-a-kind gift boxes will be available for purchase beginning Friday, April 30, at partnering cultural attractions. Just in time for the spring and summer gift-giving season – Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, graduation, weddings and more – the OKC Culture Box is the ultimate gift that recipients will be raving about! This collaborative project created by the Science Museum Oklahoma, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Oklahoma History Center, Oklahoma Contemporary, National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum and Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden, celebrates Oklahoma City’s diverse cultural community and enriching experiences available that highlight an array of interests from art to science and western culture to wildlife! Each OKC Culture Box is a treasure trove of valuable tickets and unique souvenirs. Available for $50 each the OKC Culture Box includes contents that have a retail value of more than $200. Boxes are limited with each of the seven attractions selling just 100 boxes. All proceeds for the sale of OKC Culture Boxes will remain at the attraction where it was sold. Purchase OKC Culture Boxes from the OKC Zoo, available in the Guest Services office during regular park hours. The OKC Zoo strongly encourages all guests age 11 and older to wear a face mask when in indoor habitats and Zoo buildings.

 

SATURDAY, MAY 1: OKC ZOO’S NEW DINO SAFARI OPENS

Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden presents DINO SAFARI, a new immersive experience featuring life-sized animatronic dinosaurs that demonstrate movement and sounds like the prehistoric creatures! Step back to the time of dinosaurs as you explore the Zoo’s pollinator garden to see many of your favorite dinosaurs come to life through 15 one-of-a-kind animatronic displays and 8 skeleton replicas in a COVID safer setting. Learn how dinosaurs evolved over time and where they roamed as well as what the OKC Zoo is doing to fight extinction of Oklahoma’s beloved lizard, the horny toad, also known as the Texas horned lizard. Discover a full menu of tasty eats at the newly, renovated Dino Café located next to the pollinator garden and shop for the ultimate dinosaur souvenirs at the dino-store.

For Zoo guests wanting the ultimate adventure, purchase a DINO SAFARI Single-Day Adventure Ticket with unlimited walks through DINO SAFARI, unlimited lorikeet feedings, unlimited carousel and Elephant Express tram rides plus, general admission to the Zoo for $31/adult and $28/child and senior. ZOOfriends members can take advantage of a dino-mite deal and purchase the Zoo’s DINO SAFARI Adventure Season Pass to enjoy unlimited admission to DINO SAFARI, May 1 through October 31, along with lorikeet feedings, carousel rides and a souvenir Zoo Key. DINO SAFARI Adventure Season Passes range from $35 to $200. Must be a current member to purchase season passes. Reserve your tickets or DINO SAFARI Adventure Season Pass now at okczoo.org. DINO SAFARI will be open to the public on Saturday, May 1 through Sunday, October 31, 2021. General admission to DINO SAFARI is $5/person for ZOOfriends members and $6/person for nonmembers plus, Zoo admission. Children 2 and under are free and do not require tickets for entry into DINO SAFARI.

  • CALL FOR DINO SQUAD VOLUNTEERS: Looking for a volunteer opportunity for you or the whole family? Check out the Oklahoma City Zoo’s Dino Squad! The Zoo is looking for Dino-enthusiasts to share their passion with guests as they experience DINO SAFARI open May 1 through October 31. Help guests learn about these prehistoric creatures, the Zoo’s modern day dinos and get hands-on with fossil casts. This new volunteer opportunity is perfect for families and individuals. Not a Dino expert? That’s ok! We will help give you the tools and training you need. Children 8 and up are eligible to participate. Learn more or apply at https://www.okczoo.org/Dino-Squad-Volunteers.

 

SATURDAY, MAY 1: OKLAHOMA ZOOLOGICAL SOCIETY ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR ZOOTROOP, YOUNG PROFESSIONALS SERVICE GROUP

Are you a young professional passionate about wildlife and wild places? Applications for ZOOtroop, the Oklahoma Zoological Society’s young professional group, are being accepted beginning Saturday, May 1, 2021. ZOOtroop strives to find young professionals who are enthusiastic about volunteering, wildlife, conservation, our planet and most importantly, the Oklahoma City Zoo. Join an astonishing group and participate in volunteer workdays, behind-the-scene experiences, event volunteering and expand your circle of friends and contacts. Applications will be available at zoofriends.org beginning May 1 and must include two letters of recommendation. Members are selected by a committee designated by the OZS Executive Director in conjunction with the ZOOtroop elected officers. For questions regarding ZOOtroop please email friends@zoofriends.org or call (405) 425-0613.

 

THURSDAY EVENINGS IN MAY AND JUNE: OKC ZOO’S SIP AND STROLL 21+ EVENT SERIES

Join the Oklahoma City Zoo for its summer event series, Sip and Stroll, happening Thursday evenings, May 6 through June 24, 2021, from 6 to 10 p.m. Presented by COOP Ale Works, 1800 Tequila and Kraken Run, this exclusive evening experience invites guests 21-and-older, limited to 1,200 guests per night, on an outdoor path to adventure through the Zoo to discover the world’s wildlife and feature cocktails as you stroll. Plan your own travel itinerary through the Zoo and six watering holes, with two brand-new locations. With the majority of the 100-acre park open for exploration, you can expect to see African painted dogs, Sumatran tigers, Asian elephants, Indian rhinos, flamingos, Galapagos tortoises and more. The Zoo will host a special PRIDE Sip and Stroll on Thursday, June 24. Treat yourself to VIP admission, $40/person, to enjoy early entry to the event with check-in times from 5:45-6:15 p.m., a special sea lion presentation at 7 p.m. plus, access to DINO SAFARI, Stingray Bay and lorikeets. DINO SAFARI, is the Zoo’s new immersive experience taking guests back in time to when dinosaurs roamed the Earth. Encounter 15 life-sized animatronic dinosaurs while learning what the OKC Zoo is doing to fight extinction of Texas horned lizards. VIP admission is limited to 300 guests per night. General Admission is $25/person with event entry between 6:15-7:45 p.m. and access to DINO SAFARI. Sip and Stroll Drink Passports will be available for purchase and pass holder will receive one 5-oz featured drink sample at all six specialty drink locations. Additional beverages and food will be available for purchase during Sip and Stroll. Purchase event tickets at okczoo.org/sipandstroll. Sip and Stroll entry times are spaced every 15 minutes to allow for maximum social distancing. After scheduled check-in, guests are welcome to stay through the duration of the event, 10 p.m. Tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable. This event will occur rain or shine.

 

SATURDAY, MAY 8: ZOOFRIENDS’ OSTRICH EGG BREAKFAST

Ostrich Egg Breakfast, the fun (and tasty) family favorite event, we all know and love returns this year. After a year hiatus due to COVID-19, the Oklahoma Zoological Society (ZOOfriends/OZS) will host the 34th annual Ostrich Egg Breakfast on Saturday, May 8, 2021 at the Oklahoma City Zoo. Guests will enjoy a wild morning full of delicious breakfast foods and togetherness in the unique setting of the Oklahoma City Zoo. Ostrich Egg Breakfast guests are expected to arrive between two event sessions, limited to 1,500 people per session, being held from 8 to 9:30 a.m. and 10 to 11:30 a.m. in the the Zoo’s Devon Picnic Grounds and feast on all-you-can-eat pancakes, sausage, scrambled hens’ eggs, egg strata and waffles. Additionally, traditional omelets will not be served – they will return in 2022. Breakfast will be served by OZS board members, community volunteers and chefs, and is a fund-raising event in support of the Oklahoma City Zoo. Due to limited capacity, reservations will be made to ensure social distancing measures are supported by guidelines set forth by the CDC and local government. The cost for ZOOfriends members is $20 for adults and $15 for children; the cost for non-members is $25 for adults and $20 for children. Children under 3 are admitted free. The ticket price includes Zoo admission and breakfast. Guests will be admitted every 15 minutes to ensure social distancing in the park. Attendees will not be permitted into the Zoo prior to their scheduled reservation. Event tickets can be purchased at www.zoofriends.org. Tickets are also available by calling (405) 425-0618 or in-person at the ZOOfriends Membership office located in the Zoo’s entry plaza during regular park hours.

 

SATURDAY, MAY 8: OKC ZOO PLANT SALE

The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden’s horticulture team will be hosting a Spring Plant Sale on Saturday, May 8, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Zoo. Discover a variety of fresh and beautiful botanicals straight from the Zoo’s own botanical collection including annuals and perennials. This plant sale also coincides with the American Public Gardens Association – Go Public Gardens Days and the Zoo is ready for you to visit and explore our beautiful botanical collections throughout the park. Plants will be available in 4” pots for $4 each. The plant sale will be setup in the Zoo’s entry plaza. This sale is free to attend without Zoo admission.

 

SATURDAY, MAY 8: OKC ZOO AND BOB MOORE SUBARU CELEBRATE WORLD MIGRATORY BIRD DAY

The Oklahoma City Zoo and Bob Moore Subaru invites you to be a part of World Migratory Bird Day on Saturday, May 8. "Sing, Fly, Soar — Like a Bird!" is the theme of this year’s World Migratory Bird Day, the only international education program that celebrates the migration of hundreds of bird species between their nesting habitats in North America and wintering grounds in Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean. Zoo guests can participate in a variety of activities presented locally by Bob Moore Subaru and taking place in the Children’s Zoo from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Activities include an information station, interactive activities for kids with prizes, photo opportunities and a Facebook live chat with a bird expert at 10:15 a.m. Guests will also have the opportunity to participate in a bird tour through the Zoo led by a wildlife biologist. The tour will start at 10:30 a.m. and is limited to the first 20 guests that sign up at the World Migratory Bird Day activity table located in the Children’s Zoo. All event activities are free with Zoo admission.

 

SUNDAY, MAY 23: OKC ZOO HOSTS WORLD TURTLE DAY PRESENTED BY BOB MOORE SUBARU

Mark your calendars for World Turtle Day on Sunday, May 23 and make your way to the Oklahoma City Zoo for this “turtley” awesome event. Join the Zoo and Bob Moore Subaru as we come together for turtles, and learn how you can help protect these species and their disappearing habitats both locally and globally. Event activities are planned from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., near the Zoo’s Herpetarium and Wetlands Walkway habitat. Kids 11 and under will enjoy an on-grounds turtle scavenger safari with a prize and the Zoo’s turtle experts will be hosting two Facebook live chats at 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Guests will also enjoy information stations and more. All activities are free with Zoo admission.

 

SATURDAY, MAY 29: OKC ZOO OPENS AT 8 A.M. DAILY FOR GUESTS

Beginning Saturday, May 29, and continuing through Labor Day, Monday, September 6, the Oklahoma City Zoo will open at 8 a.m. daily for guests. Zoo guests can take advantage of the cooler morning temperatures as they explore the park this summer. The Zoo will close daily at 5 p.m. Online reservations are required for all guests and members and can be made at okczoo.org/tickets.

 

MONDAY, MAY 31: PRE-SALE TICKETS FOR OKC ZOO’S BREAKFAST WITH THE ANIMALS PRESENTED BY NUTELLA

Make plans to attend Oklahoma City’s ultimate breakfast experience. Join the Oklahoma City Zoo Saturday mornings in July and August for Breakfast with the Animals presented by Nutella! This weekly morning event invites you to enjoy a Nutella-themed breakfast buffet at the top of the Zoo’s sea lion stadium. Breakfast guests will also have the opportunity to learn more about the marine mammals that call the OKC Zoo home and attend the morning sea lion presentation. The breakfast buffet will feature assorted Nutella filled pastries, Nutella fruit and pancake kabobs, breakfast meats, biscuits and sausage gravy, a made-to-order pancake station plus, an egg and omelet station. Breakfast with the Animals presented by Nutella will have two breakfast sessions, 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. and 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. with both groups attending the 10 a.m. sea lion presentation. Breakfast with the Animals presented by Nutella is $50 for adults ages 12 and up and $45 for children ages 3-11, children ages 2 and younger are free. ZOOfriends member tickets are $40 for adults ages 12 and up and $35 for children ages 3-11. Tickets will be available to ZOOfriends members only from Monday, May 31 through Sunday, June 6. Tickets will be available to the public beginning Monday, June 7. To learn more, click here

 

MAY:  OKC ZOO’S EDUCATION PROGRAMS

For additional information about these and other programs, contact the Zoo’s Education department at (405) 425-0218 or visit www.okczoo.org.

  • OKC ZOO SUMMER CAMP ENROLLMENT OPEN: 10 FULL WEEKS, MAY 31-AUGUST 6, 2021

Summer fun abounds at the Oklahoma City Zoo during our summer day camps. Summer break is a great time to encourage youngsters to explore their passions and the Zoo is the best place in Oklahoma City to both inspire a connection to nature and use that connection to build a scientific understanding of the world. The OKC Zoo’s unique, week-long summer camps offer individually themed programs that include a variety of educational and hands-on S.T.E.A.M. activities that are sure to engage your child’s curiosity and love for wildlife and wild places. Campers will also enjoy in-park exploration, engaging activities, up-close encounters with animal ambassadors and unforgettable experiences. With a myriad of summer camp options to choose from, your kiddo is sure to find a program they are wild about. OKC Zoo summer camps are available for kids 4–15 and run for ten weeks, Monday, May 31, through Friday, August 6, 2021. The cost is $275 per camper (ZOOfriends members) and $300 per camper (nonmembers) per week. Camps run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Campers must bring their own lunch and snacks. All Zoo camps will operate with enhanced safety and sanitation measures in place per CDC, city and state guidelines. Advance registration is required. To learn more or to register, visit https://www.okczoo.org/summer-camps or call (405) 425-0218.

  • FRIDAY, MAY 7: PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT

The Oklahoma City Zoo has the GOAT program for both adults and kids! Hosted by the OKC Zoo’s education team, Parents Night Out, provides a fun and COVID-safer program for kids to enjoy activities including a Zoo-themed lesson, craft activity, pizza dinner, a nighttime tour on grounds and a movie. Program capacity is limited to 15 kids to ensure safe social distancing. Ages: 4–12 years old. Program starts at 6 p.m. with pick up as late as 10 p.m. Prices are $30/child, $25/additional child (members) and $40/child, $35/additional child (nonmembers). Enroll your kiddo(s) today at https://www.okczoo.org/after-hours.

  • FRIDAY, MAY 21: FAMILY CAMP OUT, BUGS AND BLOOMS

This wild camping adventure has it all! Discover how bugs help plants grow, even at night! Explore the exciting world of pollination at the Zoo as we look for insects with black lights and conduct a moth lighting experiment! Campers will pitch their own tent on Zoo grounds, go for an evening hike through the park, snack on s’mores, enjoy animal themed stories and snooze under the stars. This program includes an animal presentation, a light breakfast plus, Zoo admission for the next day. Participants must provide their own tent and gear. Program is ideal for ages 4 and older. Children must have an adult enrolled with them. Cost is $40 per person. Program capacity is limited to ensure safe social distancing so register early at https://www.okczoo.org/overnight-programs.

 

OKC ZOO SPRING/SUMMER ATTRACTION SCHEDULE

Up-close animal connections and feedings, memorable rides and more are in store for you with these uniquely fun Zoo attractions. The following schedule is subject to change without notice. Capacity is limited for all rides and attractions to maintain adequate social distancing among guests. Guests can pre-purchase tickets for these experiences when they make their online reservation at okczoo.org/tickets or purchase them in the park. All rides and attractions are operational weather permitting.

  • Camel Rides: Take your Zoo day to new heights with a ride on a dromedary camel. Cost is $6 per person and rides will take place from 9 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. daily. Children under 6 must be accompanied by a paying adult. Other rules are posted at the habitat. Camel rides are not included in Ride-It-All packages.

  • Centennial Choo Choo:  Rides offered daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Cost is $3 per person. Children two and under free.

  • Elephant Express Tram: Sit back and relax as you tour the Zoo! Rides travel from the Entry Plaza to Sanctuary Asia and are offered daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. All day bracelets are $6 per person. Children two and under free.

  • Endangered Species Carousel: Carousel rides are available daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Cost is $3 per person.

  • Explorikeet Feedings (Children’s Zoo): Fly by the Children’s Zoo to feed the lorikeets. Feeding opportunities available daily from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4:30 p.m. Cost is $4 per person. Participants age 3+ must wear a mask during this up-close animal encounter for the protection of guests and staff.

  • Flamingo Mingle: Flamingo Mingle feedings occur daily in the Children’s Zoo habitat from 9:30 to 10 a.m. and 3:30 to 4 p.m. Cost is $7 per person. Children age 2 and under are not permitted. Participants age 3+ must wear a mask during this up-close animal encounter for the protection of guests and staff.

  • Giraffe Feeding Platform: Meet and feed the Zoo’s gentle giants! The platform is open Monday through Friday from 2 to 3 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to noon and 2 to 3 p.m. Cost is $5 per person. Children age 2 and under are not permitted. Participants age 3+ must wear a mask during this up-close animal encounter for the protection of guests and staff.

  • Rhino Feedings: Our Indian rhinos are ready to meet you! Weekend (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) feeding opportunities from 11:30 a.m. to noon. Cost is $10 per person. Children age 2 and under are not permitted. Participants age 3+ must wear a mask during this up-close animal encounter for the protection of guests and staff. Additional rules are posted at the habitat.

  • Sea Lion Presentations: Don’t miss these educational and engaging presentation featuring the Zoo’s California sea lions and harbor seals! Daily presentation at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. in the Zoo’s Sea Lion Presentation Stadium. Cost is $5 per person. Children two and under are free.

  • Stingray Bay: Stingray Bay provides up-close encounters and feeding opportunities with these majestic creatures of the sea, stingrays! Cost is $4 per person to enter. Open daily from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with feeding opportunities available from 10:30 to 11 a.m. and 1:30 to 2 p.m. while supplies last, for an additional $3 per person. Participants age 3+ must wear a mask during this up-close animal encounter for the protection of guests and staff. 

 

ONGOING: GORILLAS ON THE LINE CELLPHONE CHALLENGE

The Oklahoma City Zoo is calling on you to help protect wild gorillas and their habitat, and all you have to do is donate a used cellphone. When you donate a cellphone or small electronic to the Gorillas on the Line Cell Phone Challenge now through Friday, September 24, 2021, you will receive a free general admission Zoo ticket. Small electronics frequently contain a substance called coltan, and 80 percent of the world's coltan supply is in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, also home to many gorillas. Mining for coltan threatens the habitats of gorillas, chimpanzees, okapi and other endangered species. The coltan from these donated devices is re-used and reduces the need to mine for the compound in gorilla habitats. Schools, organizations, businesses and individuals are encouraged to collect as many cell phones and electronics as they can to help gorillas and wild habitat. Donated items can be dropped off for recycling in the Zoo’s Guest Services office in the entry plaza. The OKC Zoo strongly encourages all guests age 11 and older to wear a face mask when in indoor habitats and Zoo buildings. For additional information, click here.

 

ONGOING: ART GONE WILD, ART MADE BY THE OKC ZOO’S ANIMALS FOR ANIMALS

Art Gone Wild, the Oklahoma City Zoo’s collection of original animal paintings, are available for purchase at the Zoo. As part of the Zoo’s enrichment program, many animals including elephants, sea lions, tigers and more paint during enrichment sessions with assistance from their caregivers. Be awestruck by the Zoo’s current selection of animal paintings on display in the Zoo’s Guest Services office located in the entry plaza during regular hours. Painting prices range from $35 to $300, depending on size. All net proceeds are used to provide grants to local schools to plant gardens for monarchs and other pollinators. The OKC Zoo strongly encourages all guests age 11 and older to wear a face mask when in indoor habitats and Zoo buildings.

 

ONGOING: OKC ZOO’S STATEWIDE LIBRARY PROGRAM, READ FOR ADVENTURE, BRINGS OKLAHOMANS TOGETHER THROUGH READING, FREE ZOO TICKETS

Read for Adventure, the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden’s statewide library program, inspires Oklahoma families to connect through reading and caring about wildlife and wild places. Sponsored by OG&E, this year’s program features an original children’s book, Juniper’s Butterfly Garden, encourages kids to read about the story of a child’s journey as she learns about monarch butterflies. Monarchs migrate through Oklahoma in spring and fall on their journey between central Mexico and southern Canada, and both the OKC Zoo and OG&E are committed to conserving vital habitats that benefit all pollinators. The Read for Adventure program is aimed at promoting literacy statewide and invites library card holders to check out Juniper’s Butterfly Garden, from any participating public and tribal library location within the state, to receive a voucher redeemable for FREE general admission to the OKC Zoo for up to four people (child, adult or senior). Vouchers are redeemable through June 30, 2021. For a list of participating libraries, visit www.okczoo.org/readforadventure.

 

ONGOING: OKC ZOO’S WILD ENCOUNTERS

The Oklahoma City Zoo’s Wild Encounters provide you with a memorable experience as you enjoy an exclusive look behind the Zoo scene. See some of your favorite animals up-close like never before. Meet our expert caretakers and learn about the animals they care for and the Zoo’s efforts to conserve their wild counterparts. Wild Encounters are available Thursday through Monday and include a souvenir lanyard. There is a maximum of ten people per encounter and participants must wear masks. Prices range from $40–$50 per person depending on the encounter. Children age 2 and under are not permitted. Participants age 3+ must wear a mask during this up-close animal encounter for the protection of guests and staff. ZOOfriends’ members receive discount per encounter. For additional information about Wild Encounters or to make a reservation, contact Guest Services at (405) 425-0262.

The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden! is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Advance tickets are required for all guests and ZOOfriends members and can be purchased at okczoo.org/tickets. Zoo tickets are limited daily to maintain social distancing among guests. Located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35, the OKC Zoo is a proud member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the American Alliance of Museums, Oklahoma City’s Adventure District and an Adventure Road partner. Regular admission is $12 for adults and $9 for children ages 3-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free. Stay connected with the Zoo on FacebookTwitterInstagram and TikTok, and by visiting our blog stories. Zoo fans can support the OKC Zoo by becoming a ZOOfriends member. Starting at $45, memberships can be purchased at ZOOfriends.org and provide access to the OKC Zoo for an entire year plus, additional benefits and discounts. To learn more about Zoo happenings, call (405) 424-3344 or visit okczoo.org.

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