Adorable koalas, new baby chimpanzees and orangutan babies are drawing huge crowds to the Kansas City Zoo.
All this adorableness is responsible, so say zoo officials, for drawing in a record 950,000 guests as of Nov. 1 this year, making 2016 the highest attendance year in zoo history.
The zoo is looking for it’s millionth visitor and is ready to shower that person with gifts including a 2017 Friends of the Zoo membership and a chance to get up close and personal with the penguins by venturing into the exhibit for the Penguin Ice Shelf experience for up to nine family members or friends.
And there are still lots of reasons to visit the zoo between now and Dec. 31.
If you want to see the marsupials hurry because they are heading back to San Diego at the end of the month. The Koalas leave on Nov. 20.
December is packed with holiday cheer. Catch the gentoo and king penguins marching in the chilly air outside Helzberg Penguin Plaza at scheduled times each weekend.
Santa Claus is also making the journey from the North Pole to take a dip inside the cold penguin exhibit. See Santa diving with penguins on November 25, 26 and 27, and December 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 and 18 at 2 p.m.
“Wow,” exclaimed Randy Wisthoff, Kansas City Zoo’s Executive Director/CEO. “It’s heart-warming to see how all of Kansas City has embraced the zoo’s growth since I began here in 2003. That following year we hosted 469,471 guests and embarked on improvement plans. To imagine we’ve more than doubled our attendance and are heading toward one million guests is a tribute to all the support this city and surrounding areas have provided.”
The Kansas City Zoo is open 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. Call (816) 595-1234, or visit their website for more information.