19 Wins in 2019
As the fundraising partner of the Zoo, the Zoo Society has much to celebrate in 2019, from record money raised to exciting Zoo babies and new habitats on the horizon. Here’s a look back at our top picks for 2019.
1) Fundraising success. Zoo Society donors raised more than $200,000 for operating support, a record high. Those who donated more than $100 during the November end of year giving campaign could also get a piece of Monkey Island, which was torn down in 2019 to make room for an expanded rhino habitat. Thank you!
2) Rhino Yard Expansion. The Zoo’s success in breeding Eastern black rhinoceros means our herd needs more space to roam. In the spring, the Zoo announced the rhino habitat would be expanded, including the addition of a new bull barn and a second yard. Thanks to generous gifts from donors, the Zoo Society raised more than $2.5 million to fully fund project. Construction continues through the winter, and the new habitat should be completed in time for the busy 2020 summer season.
3) Tails and Cocktails. The first year for this quarterly Zoo speaker series was a smashing success, with four sold-out lectures. Look for the 2020 line-up to be announced soon; tickets go on sale in February.
4) Welcome Shala! In February, the Zoo welcomed the birth of its first sloth bear in 30 years. You can find Shala and her mother Shiva in Wilderness Trek this winter.
5) Welcome Kidogo! Zoo visitors and fans voted to help name another Zoo baby – Kidogo, the giraffe calf. Donations to name the baby, as well as a matching gift from a generous donor, raised more than $30,000 for Giraffe Conservation Foundation as part of World Giraffe Day in June.
6) Twilight at the Zoo presented by KeyBank was back for another successful year! More than 7,000 guests danced the night away to 18 bands all around the Zoo.
7) Zoo Clues and Brews. Hosted by The Herd and presented by Great Lakes Brewing Co., tickets to this awesome event sold out within three days of going on sale. More than 700 guests participated in the Zoo-wide scavenger hunt!
8) Date Night at the Zoovies presented by Vitamix continues to be the highly anticipated event of the summer. With tickets selling out within the first 24 hours, it’s safe to say that Zoovies is a favorite among Zoo guests.
9) Conservation Beer Series. Through an outstanding partnership with Terrestrial Brewing Company, we raised $4,000 for the Zoo’s international conservation partners. The Zoo Society received a portion of all proceeds from these beers, brewed with inspiration from the Zoo’s animals and conservation work, celebrated World Giraffe Day, World Gorilla Day and Earth Day. Stay tuned for updates on our continued partnership in 2020!
10) Best of CLE Award from Cleveland Magazine. Through the Conservation Beer Series partnership, Terrestrial Brewing Company won a Best of CLE Award from Cleveland Magazine. We are so proud of the work we’ve done together!
11) The Herd. 2019 brought the complete rebranding of our young professionals group and the creation of their social media pages, which you should definitely follow to learn more about getting a membership, participating in special events and networking with conservation-loving young leaders. @theherdcle.
12) $1.03 million was raised for the Zoo’s conservation partners around the world. A combination of individual philanthropy and round-ups on memberships and food and gift purchases helped raise this record amount of funding. Each time you visit the Zoo or buy a membership, you are helping support species conservation around the globe. Thank you for helping secure a future for wildlife!
13) The corpse flower. In the beginning of August, crowds of people flocked to the Zoo to witness the blooming of this special flower. Two-hour long waits and local news coverage put Cleveland Metroparks Zoo in the spotlight.
14) Brew at the Zoo. This new event helped kick off the 30th anniversary at Boo at the Zoo with an adult-only craft beer festival.
15) The return of Zoo lights! After far too long, holiday lights returned to the Zoo this year. Wild Winter Lights presented by NOPEC offered festive fun for guests this holiday season. The event runs through January 5; get your tickets today!
16) The Asian Lantern Festival returned for its second year this summer and was a huge hit. More than 183,000 guests helped the Zoo set the North American record for attendance.
17) Strong membership year. Dedicated Zoo members make up roughly 30% of all Zoo visitors throughout the year, and $5 from each membership goes to support the Zoo’s international conservation partners. 2019 was our highest membership revenue on record, and we are grateful for your support of the Zoo.
18) A new tiger in town. This fall, the Zoo welcomed a new Amur tiger named Zoya to Rosebrough Tiger Passage. Her arrival was long awaited and the Zoo is happy to have her!
19) Accreditation renewed. The Zoo received reaccreditation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums this year, and Zoo Executive Director Dr. Christopher Kuhar was elected to Chair of the Board of AZA. Your Zoo is a leader in conservation, education and animal care efforts among AZA zoos.
Stay tuned for all of the exciting things coming up in 2020!
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