Wild Encounter Programs

COVID-19 Update: Please note, at this time, face coverings are required to participate in all Education Department experiences for participants aged 3 and above. For those who may be unable to wear a face covering, we offer a variety of Virtual Program Experiences

 

For more information or to register:

Our Wild Encounters are ideal for small groups of people, unless otherwise noted. Several different types of private encounters are available, each described below.  Children must be accompanied by an adult, except in Zookeeper Adventure programs.  All prices listed are in addition to Zoo admission fees.  Please contact us for details.

Wild Encounters make great gifts!! We can create a certificate for you to give to the recipient, and the recipient (or his/her parents/chaperones) can call us to schedule the program at a later date. Want to purchase a Gift Certificate? Contact us today!

 

UNLIKELY ARTIST ENCOUNTER

Bearded Dragon Painting

  • $50 for up to 6 people, then $8 per each additional person to meet one animal artist (minimum of $50 per program)
  • OR $70 for up to 7 people, then $10 per each additional person to meet two animal artists (minimum of $70 per program)
  • Approximately 30 minutes in length
  • Appropriate for all ages
  • Enjoy a private “painting session” with one of our Unlikely Artists who will paint a one-of-a-kind masterpiece just for you!
  • Your group may choose up to three paint colors for your Unlikely Artist to use
  • Choose to meet and paint with one of the following Unlikely Artists:
    • Snake
    • Lizard
    • Turtle
    • Tortoise
    • Armadillo
  • Includes your choice of the following painting size options per animal friend:
    • One (1) large Canvas Paintings
    • Two (2) medium Canvas Paintings
    • Three (3) small Canvas Paintings
    • Additional canvas paintings of any size can be added for just $5 each, up to five paintings total per animal
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

CREATURE ENCOUNTER ($50 minimum per program)

  • Designed especially for families or other small groups containing children aged 5 and under; all ages welcome!
  • Approximately 30 minutes in length
  • Fee is a flat $50 for up to 6 people aged 2 and above; then $5 per each additional person (kids aged 1 and under are free)
  • You’ll meet up to four different live animals in our private classroom, along with ‘biofacts,’ like fur, feathers, and skull replicas, to learn all about these zoo animals. Kids and adults alike will be able to touch the animals and get up-close and personal with them
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

ZOO ENCOUNTER: Giraffe Habitat Tour & Private Feeding $75 per up to 6 people

  • Fee is a flat $75 per up to 6 people
  • Get a tour of the indoor giraffe habitat, and learn about how we care for the giraffes behind-the-scenes
  • Enjoy a private feeding session with the giraffes
  • Program takes place in the afternoon hours only; availability is limited
  • Giraffe Habitat Tours are best for audiences age 7 and above

ZOO ENCOUNTER: Penguin $100 per up to 6 people; $12 per additional guest

  • Approximately thirty minutes in length
  • Fee is a flat $100 for up to 6 people; then $12 per each additional person
  • At this time, all participants aged 3 and above must wear face coverings
  • Programs can be scheduled weekdays or weekends, mornings or afternoons, based on Educator availability
  • Learn all about penguins, with a focus on African penguins! Take photos, interact with the bird. Learn about how we care for the penguins at the Zoo, and how we are working to save endangered penguins from extinction – and how you can help, too!
  • Penguin Encounter programs are best for audiences aged 6 and above
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

OPTIONAL: for a $25 upgrade, the penguin will paint on a canvas for you!

  • Will increase the length of program by approximately 10 minutes
  • Upgrade fee of $25 is for group size up to 6 people; then $15 per each additional guest
  • You choose up to three paint colors for your Animal Artist to use on your canvas board(s)
  • Includes your choice of following painting sizes:
    • One (1) large Canvas Paintings
    • Two (2) medium Canvas Paintings
    • Three (3) small Canvas Paintings
  • Additional canvas paintings of any size can be added for just $5 each, up to five paintings total

Zoo Encounter: Giraffe $100 per up to 6 people; $12 per additional guest

Giraffe Encounter

  • Approximately thirty minutes in length
  • Fee is a flat $100 for up to 6 people; then $12 per each additional person
  • At this time, all participants aged 3 and above must wear face coverings
  • Programs can be scheduled weekdays or weekends, typically in the afternoons, based on Educator availability
    • In cooler weather (winter), programs can only be scheduled in the morning hours, starting around 9:30am, due to zookeeper schedules. Programs are typically only available on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and some Saturdays during that time of year.
  • Learn all about giraffes and how we care for them at the NEW Zoo! Go behind-the-scenes into the giraffe building for a tour and learn how our zookeepers work with and train the giraffes using positive reinforcement and trust. Enjoy a private feeding of Zuri in the giraffe’s outdoor side yard.
  • Giraffe Encounters are best for audiences aged 10 and up
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

OPTIONAL: for a $25 upgrade, the giraffe will paint on a canvas for you!

  • This option has *Limited Availability* if you want to see the painting created during the program; otherwise, we can have the painting(s) created in advance for you!
  • Will increase the length of program by approximately 10 minutes
  • Upgrade fee of $25 is for group size up to 6 people; then $15 per each additional guest when the painting session is done during your program
  • You choose up to three paint colors for your Animal Artist to use on your canvas board(s)
  • Includes your choice of following painting sizes:
    • One (1) large Canvas Paintings
    • Two (2) medium Canvas Paintings
    • Three (3) small Canvas Paintings
  • Additional canvas paintings of any size can be added for just $5 each, up to five paintings total

ZOO ENCOUNTER: Aldabra Tortoise $100 per up to 6 people; $12 per additional guest

  • Approximately thirty minutes in length
  • Fee is a flat $100 for up to 6 people; then $12 per each additional person
  • At this time, all participants aged 3 and above must wear face coverings
  • Programs can be scheduled weekdays or weekends, mornings or afternoons, based on Educator availability
  • Learn all about Aldabra tortoises! Take photos, interact with the tortoises and take selfies with Tootie! Learn about the interesting history of this once-endangered species and  how we care for them at the NEW Zoo.
  • Tortoise Encounter programs are best for audiences aged 6 and above
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

ZOOKEEPER ADVENTURE $100 OR $200*

  • Availability is currently limited due to COVID-19
  • Our most-popular “Wild Encounter!”
  • *Approximately 2 hours in length. A 4-hour program can be scheduled for a total price of $200
  • At this time, all participants must wear face coverings
  • This program is designed for one person, especially for those interested in the life of a zookeeper! Even Children (ages 8 and up) can participate in this adventure that will involve a variety of “zookeeper activities,” from cleaning to feeding to educating. Participants are sure to experience an unforgettable day!
  • Zookeeper Adventures make great gifts!! We can create a certificate for you to give to the recipient, and the recipient (or his/her parents/chaperones) can call us to schedule the program at a later date.
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

PERFECT PROPOSAL PACKAGE

  • If you are interested in proposing to that special animal-lover in your life and want to do it in a unique way, look no further!  There’s no need to stress over creating a special experience – we are here to help.  Our Educators will work with you to design an experience that is perfect for you and your partner. A variety of critters can be incorporated into these program; just contact us to discuss the options. Our experienced team members will even ensure your plans are kept secret until just the right moment.
  • Length of program, pricing, and details vary, based on you and your partner’s interests.  Contact us for details and options

INSIDER’S ENCOUNTER

  • Join Zoo experts behind-the-scenes at the NEW Zoo for an Insider’s Encounter. You’ll learn all about the wild ways zoo staff care for animals while hearing stories and enjoying experiences you can’t get anywhere else. Every Insider’s Encounter includes behind-the-scenes tours and meeting live animals!
  • These programs can accommodate large groups of up to 50 people
  • These programs are best for audiences aged 10 and above
  • Learn more about these behind-the-scenes tours here.
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

 

OTTER FEEDING ($50 minimum per program) *Currently unavailable due to COVID-19*

  • Designed for all ages, perfect for small groups
  • Receive up to 10 pieces of food to toss to the otters
  • Please note: program does not include physical interactions with the otters; you will toss food from the public viewing space
  • Lasts approximately 15 minutes
  • For an additional $25 ($75 total program fee) we’ll take you behind-the-scenes for a quick tour of our Nutrition Center to learn more about how we care for the otters and prepare their meals
    • Maximum of 6 people permitted for the behind-the-scenes tour; including the feeding, this program will last approximately 30 minutes and is best for audiences aged 10+
  • Want to purchase a Gift Certificate for this program? Contact us today!

DAILY OTTER FEEDING ($10 per person) *Currently unavailable due to COVID-19*

  • Occurs at 12pm daily at the Otter Exhibit
  • Any age can participate, but everyone wishing to feed the otters must have a ticket
  • Purchase tickets for the day of your choice in advance OR at the Zoo on arrival (only 5 tickets are available per day)

For more information, or to register for a Wild Encounter, please call 920-662-2405 or email education@newzoo.org.

 

 

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