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Elephant Appreciation Day

September 13, 2014

African elephants, Brittany & Ruth

The African elephant is the largest animal walking the planet; their herds wander through 37 countries in Africa. On September 13, the Zoo celebrates these magnificent animals through special activities during Elephant Appreciation Day. The day’s events are designed to spread awareness and highlight the conservation efforts for these majestic, endangered animals. Activities run from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Highlights include:

  • Elephant Barn: Enter the world of the Zoo’s two African elephants, Ruth and Brittany, for an up close view of their daily activities and care while touring the elephant barn between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
  • “Go Grey:” New this year – Wear a grey piece of clothing, in support of elephants, and you’ll be entered into a special drawing! “Go Grey” is in conjunction with the Wildlife Conservation Society’s program to draw attention to the perilous plight elephants face in the wild.
  • Elephant Appreciation DayEnrichment Activities: Elephants at our Zoo take part in enrichment activities, which encourage them to use some of the same behaviors as they would in the wild. Join us for a welcoming talk at 10:30 a.m. and watch the elephants interact with different items to keep their minds active. A second enrichment session takes place at 2 p.m.
  • Elephant Art and Artifacts: Touch elephant-related artifacts like a real tusk and tail hair. Some of the enrichment opportunities offered to Ruth and Brittany involve creating paintings with a brush held with their trunks. Today, visitors will have the chance to purchase these unique works of art. All proceeds benefit elephant conservation.
  • Wild Elephants: Try something new, and write your name and message for elephants in the wild on a specially designed paper elephant foot, and post to the barn for display.
  • Big Behaviors: Hear and see how the elephants are trained as they display different behaviors through a special training session with zookeepers at 1:30 p.m.
  • Show Your Support: Wear your elephant ears from the day’s activities and receive a free ride on the Penzeys Spices Carousel.
  • Save the Species: Learn more about elephants in the wild and their habitats and how our Zoo contributes to elephant conservation projects throughout the world.

Proceeds from Elephant Appreciation Day will benefit the International Elephant Foundation and Elephants for Africa.

All activities for this special event are included in regular Zoo admission. For further details; please contact the Zoo’s Public Affairs and Services Division at 414.256.5466.