The Woodland Park Zoo is planning to close the Nocturnal House exhibit for budget reasons and a group of citizens is banding together to try to keep it open.
Even though the zoo had near-record attendance in 2009, it’s still struggling with the economy. “For 2010, we needed long-term solutions that match our income with increasing expenses, and that meant reducing annual expenses between $800,000 and $1 million,” this letter explains. “Closing the Night Exhibit emerged as the best of a set of unpleasant choices. Closing it will save about $300,000 in operating costs annually.”
Now, a Facebook group has been set up to try to save the exhibit. “While times are tough, we need to not lose the things that make the Zoo so great. For many this is their only chance to actually see the wonderful creatures that inhabit the nighttime world. What better way to turn fear into fascination and apathy to respect then to show creatures, many of whom live right under our noses, in a great approximation of their natural habitat doing what they do.” The site explains.
The “Save the Woodland Park Nocturnal House” group is planning to gather at the exhibit this coming Sunday at 1 p.m. “I don’t think we need to make this a protest or demonstration, and that would probably get us kicked out of the zoo,” writes the Facebook group founder Scott Gifford, “but we …can explain to people what is happening, let the Zoo staff know why we are there, and have a good time as well!” (Thanks Jen & Tammy for the tip!)