Oklahoma’s largest Halloween celebration returns with safe, contact-free trick-or-treating fun and new festive activities for all ages
Get ready for trick-or-treating fun so safe, it’s scary! The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is thrilled to announce that it will be hosting its 37th annual Haunt the Zoo for Halloween with new trick-or-treating methods in place to ensure a safe experience for all involved. Haunt the Zoo takes place on Saturdays and Sundays from October 10 through November 1, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
“We’re excited to bring Haunt the Zoo to life and provide Oklahoma families with a memorable way to celebrate the fall season and an opportunity to enjoy quality time together exploring the Zoo,” said Rochelle Wilhelm, OKC Zoo’s director of guest experience and events. “Our top priority is providing a safe event for our guests, volunteers and staff while showcasing all the wonder and magic this popular tradition continues to bring to the community.”
This year, Haunt the Zoo is expanding from two to four weekends to allow ample room for social distancing among guests. Event dates are Saturday, October 10 and Sunday, October 11; Saturday, October 17 and Sunday, October 18; Saturday, October 24 and Sunday, October 25; and Halloween Saturday, October 31 and Sunday, November 1. Trick-or-treating is available each day from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. through timed ticketing.
Costume-clad trick-or-treaters will go wild as they collect treats from friendly volunteers at 13 candy stations located along the Haunt the Zoo trail. Volunteers will distribute candy and tasty snacks through 8-foot “treat tubes” into trick-or-treat bags from a safe distance. Guests will also discover 27 themed booths displaying an array of family-friendly decorations and elaborate props, perfect for capturing fa“boo”lous photo moments. Haunt the Zoo goers are invited to wear their Halloween costumes. Adults may wear costumes, too, but nothing scary. Guests are strongly encouraged to wear masks while at the Zoo. Masks are required for all indoor locations and while participating in animal feedings and encounters. All Zoo staff and event volunteers are required to wear masks while working.
HAUNT THE ZOO ADMISSION FAQ
- Haunt the Zoo tickets are on sale now at www.okczoo.org/tickets. All guests and ZOOfriends members must purchase event tickets in advance online at www.okczoo.org/tickets.
- Participants wishing to trick-or-treat must purchase an official treat bag: $7 per child (non-members) and $6 per child (ZOOfriends members). General admission must be purchased separately for entry into the Zoo.
- A maximum of 300 trick-or-treat bags will be sold per hour. Trick-or-treat bags will be available for pickup at the Zoo’s Plan Your Day cart located past the admission check-in point.
- Haunt the Zoo capacity will be limited to 400 admission tickets sold every 15 minutes.
- Please arrive at the time of your Haunt the Zoo reservation. This allows you to enter the Zoo quickly and easily.
KEEPING YOU SAFE AT HAUNT THE ZOO
- Event admission and trick-or-treat bags will be limited to ensure social distancing.
- Haunt the Zoo activities are outdoors, spanning across the Zoo’s 100-acre park.
- Candy and snacks will be distributed to trick-or-treaters through 8-foot “treat tubes”!
- All event volunteers and Zoo employees handling event candy are required to wear masks and gloves.
- Event signage and audio messages, made periodically throughout the day, will remind guests to socially distance while in the park.
- Hand sanitizing stations will be located at the Zoo’s entry, exit, restrooms, eateries and most animal habitats for guests to use.
- Zoo team members will continuously clean high-touch surfaces like vending machines, tables, chairs, rides and more.
MORE HAUNT THE ZOO/HALLOWEEN HAPPENINGS
- NEW Pumpkin Painting Craft – The Haunt the Zoo fun rolls on with pumpkin painting! This craft activity is great for kids 11 and under and provides them with a personal keepsake from the event. Pumpkin painting will be located at the Jungle Gym Picnic Area. The cost is $5 per child (ZOOfriends members) and $6 per child (non-members) and capacity is limited per event date.
- Hay Maze and Cheetah Dash Race Course – Take a break from the trick-or-treat trail to let your kiddos partake in these interactive games at no additional cost. The Cheetah Dash Race is located at the Zoo’s picnic area and the Hay Maze can be found at the Jungle Gym Plaza.
- Halloween-Themed Sea Lion Presentation – The Zoo’s marine mammal team created a special sea lion presentation that focuses on popular Halloween characters and movies that are “delightful not frightful,” making this appropriate for young ages. These presentations are exclusive to Haunt the Zoo dates at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. in the sea lion stadium. Admission is $5 per person and children two and under are free.
- Endangered Species Carousel and Elephant Express Tram – Boo it all with a spin on the carousel or a guided tour on the Elephant Express Tram, both decked out for Haunt the Zoo. Additional fees apply for each ride and can be purchased in advance with your admission tickets or on-site. Children two and under ride for free.
- OKC Zoo’s Annual Pumpkin Drive – Back by popular demand, the Zoo will host its annual Pumpkin Drive from Thursday, October 1 through Wednesday, October 7 during regular hours. Guests bringing a pumpkin larger than their heads to the Zoo will receive free same-day admission. The limit is one free admission per person. Pumpkins will be available for purchase in front of the Zoo. Donated pumpkins will be used to decorate Haunt the Zoo.
Interested in helping with Haunt the Zoo? The OKC Zoo needs hundreds of volunteers to help make Haunt the Zoo a sweet success. Volunteers will help with distributing goodies to trick-or-treaters through “treat tubes” and manning lines at the candy stations. Volunteers must be 14 or older. This opportunity is ideal for individuals, families and groups. Masks and gloves are required while volunteering. The Zoo will provide gloves. To learn more about volunteering or to sign up, click here.
Let your Halloween spirit go wild with Haunt the Zoo! The Oklahoma City Zoo is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Advance tickets are required for all guests and ZOOfriends members and can be purchased at www.okczoo.org/tickets. Zoo tickets are limited each day to ensure safe 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 up-to-date with the Zoo on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and by visiting Our Stories. Zoo fans can support the OKC Zoo by becoming a member. Memberships can be purchased at ZOOfriends.org or any place admission is sold in the Zoo’s Entry Plaza during regular business hours. To learn more about this event and other happenings, call (405) 424-3344 or visit okczoo.org.