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North Carolina Zoo kicks off 'Creature Comforts' Saturday

Posted on 04/21/09

ASHEBORO, N.C.-Bringing an end to their month-long ZooFLING, the North Carolina Zoo will kick off the yearly "Creature Comforts" celebration Saturday, April 25, when visitors can meet the keepers and learn about animal enrichment.

Times and locations include: cougars, 10 a.m.; red river hogs, 11 a.m.; lions, 11:30 a.m.; puffins, 11:30 a.m.; Aviary, 2 p.m.; elephants, 2:30 p.m.; and Sonora Desert mammals, 3 p.m.

Additionally, a special celebration for Terry the chimpanzee's 40th birthday will be held at Kitera Forest Chimpanzee Reserve at 2 p.m. Terry and the other chimps will receive wrapped gift boxes with food treats inside.

The wrapped gifts and other animal enrichment is part of the zoo's ongoing program to provide both mental and physical stimulation for the animals, allowing them to find and play with the treats as well as experience their taste and smell.

Visitors can also experience the zoo's new 4-D, special-effects theater that has now opened for the season, featuring "Wild Earth Africa." Then visitors can ride the animals--carousel animals, that is. The carousel, a 36-foot model with animals three-across, combines both the sounds and sights of the classic carousel with modern-day technology and materials. After all that, children can enjoy "kidZone," an interactive exhibit designed to put small children in touch with wildlife and the natural world.

All the weekend fun takes place during regular zoo hours of 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. and, except for a $3 charge for "Wild Earth Africa," is included in the regular zoo admission of $10 for adults, $8 for seniors (62+) and $6 for children (ages 2-12).

"Creature Comforts" is made possible through signature sponsor Pepsi and by ClearChannel Radio.

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

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