(This month’s article comes to us from Miss Mary at Main, who wanted to let you know about a fun activity you can do with the entire family!)
A Visit to the Zoo!
The month of March marks the beginning of spring and the start of the outdoor season. While the temperatures in March tend to be cool, there are usually some warm, sunny days scattered throughout the month. A visit to the zoo this time of year might be just the thing to do after a long cold winter. Almost all children enjoy zoos and Ohio is fortunate in having several amazing zoos within a short driving distance. Zoos have many attractions that appeal to all ages. Pack a picnic lunch, bring extra coats (March’s weather is always fickle), and take off to see some exotic animals close to home.
Here are a few suggestions to help make your visit to the zoo memorable:
- Research the zoo you plan on visiting. This can be done online and will help you decide the best day or time for a visit. Check for any specials or family discounts the zoo may have to offer before your visit.
- What animals does the zoo have in residence? Visit your local library and check out some books about specific animals living in the zoo. Share these books with your children before your visit, allowing them to become familiar with the animals and their habitats.
- Look for exhibits and facilities that will appeal to young children. Many zoos have special “petting zoos” within their boundaries to give children the opportunity to get “up close and personal” with the animals.
- Try to visit the zoo early in the day when it is not as crowded. Animals tend to be more visible and easier for children to spot.
- Take your time and enjoy the day. Don’t try to do too much in one visit.
Zoos in Ohio:
- Akron Zoo
- Cincinnati Zoo
- Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
- Columbus Zoo and Aquarium
- Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo (located just over the border in Northeastern Indiana)
- Toledo Zoo
Great Books about Animals and Zoos!
- Beco’s Big Year: A Baby Elephant Turns One by Linda Stanek
- Zooborns!: Zoo Babies From Around the World by Andrew Bleiman
- Zookeepers by Sarah Teick
- Animal Strike At the Zoo, It’s True! by Karma Wilson
- Charlie at the Zoo by Marcu Pfister
- Curious George Visits the Zoo by Margaret Rey
- One Night in the Zoo by Judith Kerr
- View at the Zoo by Kathleen Long Bostrom
- ZooZical by Judy Sierra
Here is a great video from Cincinnati Zoo about sand cats. Never heard of these desert-roaming felines? Let the zookeeper tell you about them!
Adorable video from Cincinnati Zoo showing off their ambassador animals, a cheetah and an Anatolian Shepard puppy.