NOW THROUGH FRIDAY, OCTOBER 6: OKC ZOO’S ANNUAL PUMPKIN DRIVE
It’s officially Halloween season so it’s time to go big or GOURD home! Now through Friday, October 6, guests bringing a pumpkin larger than their head to the Oklahoma City Zoo will receive free same-day general admission. Pumpkins brought and donated will be used to decorate the OKC Zoo for the 40th annual Haunt the Zoo occurring Saturdays and Sundays, October 7 through 29. Limit one free admission per person. Pumpkins will be available for purchase at the Zoo’s front entrance through October 6 for $12 each or four pumpkins for $40.
TICKETS ON SALE FOR 40TH ANNUAL HAUNT THE ZOO FOR HALLOWEEN PRESENTED BY OKLAHOMA’S OWN NEWS 9
Ready to boo it all this fall at the Oklahoma City Zoo’s 40th annual Haunt the Zoo for Halloween, Oklahoma’s largest and longest-running Halloween tradition! Presented by Oklahoma’s Own News 9, Haunt the Zoo, provides a festive setting for fans to enjoy a unique, safe trick-or-treating experience surrounded by the Zoo’s wondrous wildlife! Trick-or-treaters will discover originally themed photo booths with elaborate decorations and props along the Haunt the Zoo trail as they collect treats from friendly volunteers. Show off your festive best and wear your Halloween costume to Haunt the Zoo. Adults are encouraged to dress up, too, but nothing scary. Haunt the Zoo occurs Saturdays and Sundays, October 7 through 29. Trick-or-treating is available each day from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with a morning reservation block from 9 a.m. to noon and an afternoon block from noon to 4 p.m. General Zoo admission or ZOOfriends memberships plus, official Haunt the Zoo treat bags are required to trick-or-treat and must be purchased in advance. Official trick-or-treat bags are $8/bag or $7/bag (ZOOfriends members). To purchase and view all ticket options, visit www.okczoo.org/htz. While experiencing Haunt the Zoo, attendees can enjoy a Hay Maze and special 40th anniversary activities at no additional cost. Haunt the Zoo goers can also experience other Zoo attractions including giraffe, rhino and lorikeet feedings, a ride on the tram or carousel and more while at the Zoo. Tickets for these attractions may be limited and can be purchased in advance or on-site. To learn more about Haunt the Zoo, visit www.okczoo.org/htz. 2023 Haunt the Zoo sponsors to date include Oklahoma’s Own News 9, Aurora Pediatric Dentistry, Chicken N’ Pickle, Express Employment International, Frito-Lay, Heartland, INTEGRIS Health, Kroger, Love’s, Metro Mark Realty, Primrose School, Sam’s Club and Tinker Federal Credit Union.
BE PART OF THE HAUNT THE ZOO TRADITION AND VOLUNTEER! The Oklahoma City Zoo is needing volunteers to help with this year’s spooktacular celebration, Haunt the Zoo occurring Saturdays and Sundays, October 7 through 29. Volunteers must be 14 or older and any volunteer under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. This volunteer opportunity is ideal for individuals and families plus, civic, school and corporate groups. To learn more about volunteering or to register, click here.
ONLINE RESERVATIONS OPEN FOR OKC ZOO SAFARI LIGHTS PRESENTED BY OG&E
Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden’s SAFARI LIGHTS returns this holiday season, bigger and brighter with all new lanterns! Presented by OG&E, OKC ZOO SAFARI LIGHTS is a dazzling light display offering guests of all ages the opportunity to discover all brand-new, larger-than-life light sculptures on a driving tour through the OKC Zoo. The fun continues as guests park and re-enter the Zoo for a separate walking experience complete with immersive and interactive light displays, s’mores stations, themed photo ops and more. Wild souvenirs will also be available for purchase. OKC ZOO SAFARI LIGHTS begins Saturday, November 11, and runs nightly through New Year’s Day, Monday, January 1, 2024 with drive-through and walk-through experiences from 5:30 to 11 p.m. with the last check-in at 10 p.m. OKC ZOO SAFARI LIGHTS will be open on holiday nights including Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Supporting sponsor for OKC ZOO SAFARI LIGHTS includes Devon and MidFirst Bank. Advance online reservations are required for OKC ZOO SAFARI LIGHTS driving tours and can be made at www.okczoo.org/safari-lights and are limited so purchase early. OKC ZOO SAFARI LIGHTS is produced by the Oklahoma City Zoo and Tianyu Culture.
SAFARI LIGHTS SENSORY NIGHT: The OKC Zoo will be hosting a Sensory-Friendly Night for SAFARI LIGHTS on Wednesday, November 15, from 6 to 9 p.m. Attendees will discover a less sensory stimulating environment with lower crowd attendance, limited flashing lights and reduced sounds while experiencing SAFARI LIGHTS.
REGISTRATION OPEN FOR OKC ZOO’S SCHOOLS OUT DAY CAMPS FOR FALL/WINTER SEASONS
Enrollment is now open for the Oklahoma City Zoo’s Schools Out Day Camps scheduled for October, November and December. Schools Out Day Camps align with school breaks and holidays, offering a fun, educational camp destination for young learners. Participants will enjoy fun-filled days including in-park exploration, animal ambassador visits, crafts and more. Camps are themed and ideal for students 4 to 12. Drop off is 8 to 8:30 a.m. and pick up is 4 to 4:30 p.m. Campers must bring their own lunch and snacks. Cost per camper is $50 for nonmembers and $45 for ZOOfriends. For camp details or to register visit www.okczoo.org/schools-out.
OKC ZOO’S ZOOZEUM HOSTS NEW EXHIBIT, FEATHERS, FINS AND FUR: ANIMAL CLANS AMONG TRIBAL NATIONS IN OKLAHOMA, NOW OPEN
The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden, in partnership with The Chickasaw Nation and First Americans Museum (FAM), recently debuted a new educational exhibit at the Zoo’s on-site history museum, the ZooZeum. The exhibit, Feathers, Fins and Fur: Animal Clans Among Tribal Nations in Oklahoma, celebrates the significant connections between wildlife and nature with our state’s tribal families and communities. Along with the exhibit, guests are encouraged to explore the Zoo’s Oklahoma Trails habitat for in-person discoveries to Oklahoma’s diverse wildlife. The ZooZeum is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and entry is included with Zoo admission.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 13: OKC ZOO’S CHOMP AND STOMP ANIMAL ENRICHMENT EVENT
Take time this fall break to attend the Oklahoma City Zoo’s seasonal animal enrichment event, Chomp and Stomp. During this uniquely festive, family-friendly activity guests watch as the OKC Zoo’s animal family chomp and stomp pumpkins galore. This year’s event theme, “Decades of Halloween: 40 Years of Fun,” will be inspiration for our caretakers, as they put their creative talents to the test – carving, slicing and dicing pumpkins into edible creations for the animals to enjoy. These unique food items are provided to the animals as part of the Zoo’s ongoing animal enrichment program, which is designed to stimulate and encourage the animals’ natural behaviors, such as foraging. This activity is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and is free to attend with Zoo admission. The Chomp and Stomp schedule will be shared on the Zoo’s social platforms and website.
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 14: AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE (ASL) INTERPRETERS AT THE OKC ZOO
The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden strives to find new and memorable ways to bring guests closer to its wildlife and nature including providing American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters in the park. The OKC Zoo has ASL interpreters available on the second Saturday of every month to help create an enhanced experience for guests who are deaf and hard of hearing. ASL interpreters are present at elephant presentations and scheduled Wild Encounter experiences. Zoo guests are not charged a fee for the use of an ASL interpreter. Elephant presentations are free to attend and occur weekends at 2 p.m. in the elephant pavilion at Sanctuary Asia. For a complete listing of available Wild Encounters visit okczoo.org.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 27: OKC ZOO HOSTS ANNUAL HAUNT THE ZOO: ALL GROWN UP
The strange and spooky continues to grow with OKC’s biggest adult-only Halloween party, Haunt the Zoo: All Grown Up! Returning to the Oklahoma City Zoo on Friday, October 27, from 7 to 11 p.m., Haunt the Zoo: All Grown Up is a festive night for Halloween fans 21 and older to creep out at the Zoo after-hours. Revelers will enjoy unique experiences, custom photo ops, multiple bars featuring specialty cocktails, a themed haunt zone, the scareousel, and dancing to music provided by DJ Kora Waves and DJ Limitless! Guests will also go wild to know that $2 from every event ticket will benefit the Zoo’s Asian Elephant conservation programs. Costumes are encouraged. Real or fake weapons or full coverage masks are prohibited. General admission for Haunt the Zoo: All Grown Up is $42/person and $37/person for ZOOfriends. Drink ticket packages will be available for purchase in advance and during the event. Event attendance is limited so attendees are encouraged to purchase tickets early at www.okczoo.org/our-events. Haunt the Zoo: All Grown Up is rain or shine and tickets are non-refundable.
Protecting the planet starts with you and the Oklahoma City Zoo’s Conservation Club! This program engages young conservationists, 8 to 13 years old, to take action to help make the planet a place where wildlife and wild places thrive. Programs include hands-on activities, opportunities to meet with our everyday conservationists, and expeditions through the Zoo. This month’s Club session occurs Saturday, October 28, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The theme is Precarious Populations, Animals in decline? Not on our time! Help us pull species back from the edge of extinction. Program fee is $15/child (ZOOfriends) or $20/ child (nonmember). Preregistration required. Visit Conservation Club (okczoo.org) for more information.
The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily with the last entry at 4 p.m. Purchase advance Zoo admission tickets at okczoo.org/tickets and avoid the entry lines. 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 $16 for adults and $13 for children ages 3-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free. Stay connected with the Zoo on Facebook, X, Instagram, Threads, Linktree and TikTok, and by visiting our blog stories. Looking for a year of Zoo adventures? Consider a 12-month, ZOOfriends Membership Passport to the OKC Zoo providing general admission year-round and exclusive offers while supporting the Zoo’s ongoing animal care and conservation programs. Memberships can be purchased at okczoo.org/membership.