Hey, Animal Lovers!
Do you belong in the zoo? Well, let me rephrase that—I don’t mean living there. Do you love your zoo visits? Seeing the animals of the world in their imitated natural habitats all in the same setting is always such a thrill for us to absorb and appreciate. It’s certainly fun to take in the majestic, humorous, and adorable charm of the animals as you tour a zoo.
Today is Zoo Lovers Day! For those who can’t get enough of this place, perhaps you should consider a Zoo Camp if you have a local zoo that offers such an experience. Some Day Camps take place at the zoo in order to show kids a behind-the-scenes look at what goes on there.
Fortunately, it just so happens that our very own Operations Manager here at Everything Summer Camp attended a Day Camp at the zoo when he was a kid. So I talked with Brian about his experience.
Bri attended Zoo Camp back in the days when he was just eleven years old. The days would last from 8:00am till 2:00pm, but Bri remembered hanging out for longer afterwards. “We were already at the zoo,” he said so of course they would stick around once his family arrived to pick him up.
For one whole week, Brian was given a backstage pass to see the zoo from a zookeeper’s perspective. He was treated to walks inside some of the cages and seeing behind the exhibits. He saw animals that were either babies or newcomers to the zoo who weren’t ready for the public eye just yet.
He fed baby animals. He saw the gigantic cuts of meat that were fed to the carnivorous creatures. And, yes, he even saw people cleaning up poop…a lot of poop. “It was relatively hands-on for 10-year-olds,” he noted.
Extremely educational, Bri described the experience as sort of a cross between being at camp and being at school—like, your favorite school field trip. It was very structured and you were taught a lot. It made for a valuable experience to Brian who, at the time, aspired to be a marine biologist.
You can imagine his favorite part was the aquariums. He recalled walking the walkways from above and peering down into the huge tanks. “I’d seen the aquariums countless times through the windows,” he said, “but seeing them from such a different view—that was something that always stuck with me.”
Bri also had the traditional overnight camp experience when he was young, so I asked him how the experiences measured up. “I recommend both,” he answered. “Zoo Camp was very structured, with an educational, curriculum; there wasn’t any downtime to form lasting friendships,” he said, highlighting one of the best parts of overnight camp.
Happy Zoo Lovers Day, Everybody! Get out to your local zoo today and pay all your favorite animals a visit! See if you can find the opportunity for a Zoo Camp experience like Brian had and, as always, thanks for reading!