Friday, May 14, 2010

Fit in a Fun Friday - The Zoo

One of my high school friends, Maggie, invited my husband and me to come visit about a month ago and take a tour of her job.  I know a private tour of somebody's job doesn't sound like that much fun...unless they work at a zoo! 

Yep, we got a free private tour of a zoo!

It was great.  We were able to feed Jeffrey the giraffe and Babe the rhino (you can see their pictures below...well Babe's booty and her companion's pic).  My friend also told us the histories of each animal she knew and the funny stories that have happened along the way.

They have one elephant that seems to take offense at inanimate objects...she mangled a fence without even trying.  We also met a wild turkey that refused to settle down...I swear, he thought we were really after his woman and could stay completely puffed up for hours on end.  He's going to give himself a heart attack. 

The last picture is of Mukah, an orangutan that really thinks he is human...
By the time we had seen the whole place, I felt like I had known those animals for years.

I also remembered the ton other zoo visits I have enjoyed.  My parents enjoyed taking my sisters and me to whatever zoo or wildlife preserve that was in each city we lived in or visited.  I honestly can't remember the number of times I've been to the Houston Zoo.

My husband and I have continued that tradition as well.  We even visited the New Orleans Zoo a few months before Katrina hit.

There's just something special about seeing all of those animals that reminds you that you're just one small dot in a much bigger picture. 

It's also an outing that usually runs about the same price as a trip to the movie theater - tickets range from $5 to $15 for an adult and less for children.  Most zoos also allow you to bring water bottles and picnic lunches as well.

Have you been to the zoo lately?  Do you remember any fun visits in the past?


  1. For families with children, a zoo membership is a great bargain. Till my oldest was about 12, we had a membership that covered the Audubon Zoo and the Aquarium of the Americas (in New Orleans). Your Katrina mention made me sad because a lot of the animals at the Aquarium died.

  2. I love, love, love the zoo. Even though my kids are getting older, they still enjoy the zoo. Here at the Detroit Zoo, if you get an annual pass, it is an incredibly cheap way to spend the day. We always pack a nice picnic and enjoy the day. Plus, the pass also gets you in free to many zoos throughout the country (or at a reduced rate).

    My all time favorite zoo is the National Zoo in Washington DC. It has fantastic animals, and the fact it is free is always nice too.

  3. Taking my daughter to Brookfield Zoo, in suburban Chicago, was great. I hadn't been there in over 30 years, but it was so neat to take my child (2 at the time) to the same zoo.

    What was very cool to me was to get her the same exact souvenir that I got as a kid. I remember my dad putting $0.25 in a machine, and a plastic gorilla was molded right in front of you. It was hot when dispensed, so you had to be careful. Anyway, to my surprise, they had this same machine there 30 YEARS LATER! The price was now $1.50 :) Anyway, I would have paid $10 for it(frugality has its places, and this wasn't one), as it was great to buy my little girl the same toy I got as a child. Great Daddy/Daughter moment.

  4. Sadly, we never go to the zoo anymore (Houston). It's gotten too expensive.

  5. Frugal Scholar, I knew some of the animals had died...I was scared to ask if the Sea Otters are okay? We had visited the Zoo and the Aquarium while we were there...I was hoping the zoo animals had been evacuated...

  6. Frugal Scholar and Everyday Tips, thanks for bringing up memberships! Zoo memberships are the only way to go if you're going to go more than 2 times a year. :-)

    Everyday Tips, I haven't been to the National Zoo's going on my list, thanks!

  7. Squirrelers, yeah, frugality goes out the window for me when a cool trip down memory lane is available. I wish our zoo had an animal molder...that sounds way better than the crushed pennies I collect!

  8. Carrie, it does stink that they've raised their prices so much though. When I was tiny, it was free. In my pre-teens they started charging a couple of bucks. Now it's as much as a movie, right? $8-$9 a person? Yuck.

    A family pass would be one big hit up front, but then you could go as much as you want. Maybe that's an option? :-)

  9. When my sons were young we had annual passes to the San Diego Zoological Society which included admission to the zoo and the Wild Animal Park.

    Now my grandson is approaching 1 year old, maybe it's time for me to get one to take him. Thanks for bringing it to mind.

  10. Bucksome Boomer, I'm glad to have been a reminder. :-)

    I loved going to the zoo with my grandparents...have a great time!

  11. I once had a tour of an large indoor aquarium conducted by a marine biologist who happened to be my roommate's brother. Did the public tour another day and there was just no comparison.

  12. Jason, a personal tour of an indoor aquarium would be awesome! That had to be so much fun!