ASHEBORO, NC - The North Carolina Zoo will host a photography event, "Sky Art," Wednesday, May 18, with proceeds from the fund-raiser going to support plant conservation in Africa.

The event, Sky Art, will be held at the zoo's Oak Hill Picnic Area in the Africa Region at 1 p.m. As part of the event, an overhead photograph will be taken of the participants making the outline of a purple coneflower (Echinacea) with "Honey" the bee as a logo. Echinacea, a commonly consumed herbal remedy for the common cold, is a wonderful local nectar plant for honeybees. Birds use the seed as a food source also.

The Sky Art photo image taken at the event will be featured on multiple web sites, and the event T-shirt will be available at the zoo's gift shops in May. Buttons and Echinacea seed packets will be available for sale during the event.

Participation in the event will be $10 per person, with the first 100 participants receiving a free event T-shirt to wear for the photograph. It is not necessary to purchase admission to the zoo to take part in the event.
Tickets may be purchased from any N.C. Zoo Society gift shop (336-879-7267). Tickets may also be purchased from select zoo horticulture staff: Gin Wall (336-879-7400, Delores Foland (336-879-7418), Sue Baltes (336-879-7412), Ron Ferguson (336-879-7411) or Susan Riddick (336-879-7412 ). Tickets will also be sold at the event.
Sky Art will be held rain or shine but cancelled in the event of lightning or thunderstorms. For more event information, call 336-879-7400. The event photograph will appear online at:, and

The North Carolina Zoo supports the Tooro Botanical Garden in Fort Portal, Uganda, central Africa, which protects both rare and endemic plant species growing in the region. The botanical garden is located in Africa's Albertine Rift and is home to some of Africa's rarest species--both plant and animal--and most diverse ecosystems. Funds raised at the event will continue to be spent on designing and building a medicinal plant garden for the women of Uganda to give basic first aid to their families.

The zoo is an agency of the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Dee Freeman, Secretary; Beverly E. Perdue, Governor.