Erie Zoo Prepares for Zoo Boo and Winter Hibernation

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By Elspeth Mizner

ERIE, Pa. (Erie News Now) – Zoo Boo at the Erie Zoo kicks off in one week on October 12.

Before families head out to enjoy all the fun, there’s a few things they need to know.

In recent years, officials at the Erie Zoo have changed the hours of the annual zoo activity and fundraiser. “Right now we are running Zoo Boos from Wednesday to Sundays. Wednesday through Fridays it will be evenings only, from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. and then the zoo will be open for normal operating hours from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on those weekdays and then on Saturdays and Sundays, we will be open for Zoo Boo only will be 12:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m.”, said Emily Smicker, the Marketing and Events Coordinator at the Erie Zoo.

Smicker said a lot of the fan favorite activities will return, but there will be some new additions this year like a full family scavenger hunt around the zoo and allergy-friendly items at all the booths.

After Zoo Boo wraps up on October 30th, the Erie Zoo will still be open until November 30th.

Once the zoo closes for winter, it’s all about prepping for a new zoo season, this follows a year with ups and downs including losing some of the Erie Zoo’s beloved animals, like Viktor the Amur Tiger and Nala, the Lioness.

“We spend a lot of that time prepping for the upcoming season. We do a lot of event planning, we work on our budgeting, as well as grants as well as work with our animals we will work on extensive training and medical evaluations and all the things we can’t do when here are people on the grounds”, said Smicker.

In addition to yearly upkeep during the winter, guests can expect a few new addition to the Erie Zoo family when they visit next spring.

“This fall we are going to bring in two new red pandas, as our former red pandas went off to do some breeding recommendations at other zoos, so we are going to have two new red pandas on site. We are looking forward to two new species of monkeys who are going to be joining our Colobus monkeys and our new Colobus exhibit and come spring we are going to be starting an exciting renovation on our Otter exhibit”, said Smicker.

The Erie Zoo is still looking for volunteers for Zoo Boo, for more information on how to volunteer and on ticket sales, click here.


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