While I was enjoying clear skies and all the wonderful pumpkins at the other Dave’s “Roger Williams Park Zoo” in Rhode Island (covered a few posts back), my poor Brookfield Zoo in Chicago was getting nailed with heavy rains and tornado alerts! Its the dilemma of any Midwest zoo….dealing with the unpredictable weather! Fortunately, the tempest had cleared by the time I returned to my Windy City and the following weekend proved perfect for enjoying BZ’s “Creatures of the Night!”
Last month we reported the Halloween activities at the two zoos in which The Daves are volunteer docents; Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo and Rhode Island’s Roger Williams Park (in a story you can revisit HERE)! Both zoo’s served up a fantastic seasonal event that is something ALL local readers should plan on attending next year. Brookfield Zoo gets a special nod from horror fans for delving into the darker side of Halloween and proving (by its huge turn out) that us adult horror fans are a financial force to be reckoned with. “Creatures of the Night” proved a devilishly good time with lots of great activities such as this “Pumpkin Execution” – courtesy of a device created by the zoo’s exhibits department and utilizing materials laying around the zoo. While orange and black are most commonly associated with the holiday’s colors, Brookfield Zoo made it even more spectacular by going “Green.”
This past week, I had the unique opportunity to experience two zoo Halloween attractions located over a thousand miles from each other. Both Daves are volunteer docents (from the Greek word “to teach”) at their respective zoos and enjoy sharing their important conservation messages with thier guests. I have been affiliated with Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo for over 13 years (both as employee and volunteer) and David Albaugh joined his zoo (Roger Williams Park in Rhode Island) earlier this year. Before I continue, let me state that this is NOT a compare/contrast piece. Each year, numerous guests at the zoo will say things to me like, “Your zoo is better than mine,” “My zoo is better than yours,” etc. The truth is, all Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) accredited zoos are not in competition with one another. In fact, it is quite the contrary. These non-profit organizations all work together for the singular purpose of doing important conservation research around the world (which most of the public is unaware of ) while also educating and connecting their visitors with nature during their recreational visits.