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Contact(s):Susan Altrui
501-661-7208 direct
saltrui@littlerock.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE :
Monday, July 16, 2007

Zoo Spring Attendance Up More Than 20,000 for 2007

New Exhibits, Guest Amenities Draw Visitors

LITTLE ROCK (July 16, 2007) – The Little Rock Zoo is proud to announce an increase of nearly 20,500 visitors for the 2007 spring season.

From February 1, 2007 to June 30, 2007 the zoo received a grand total of 159,020 visitors compared to only 138,571 during the same time in 2006. The months of February through June are typically the busiest time of the year for the zoo because of an increase in school group attendance and regular weekend guest attendance.

Zoo director Mike Blakely says the increase is due in part to the grand opening of several new exhibits and guest amenities such as a new entry plaza, Safari Trader gift shop, Lorikeet Landing exhibit, Café Africa, renovated bear area, and other modifications made to existing animal exhibits.

“When a zoo opens new attractions it excites the public and drives attendance,” said Blakely. “The Little Rock Zoo has undergone a major transformation in the past few years and our guests are excited to see all the change,” Blakely added.

Most renovation and new construction was funded by the 2004 Bond Project. A grant from the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism Outdoor Recreation Grant paid for modifications to the stone public restrooms outside the elephant yard and the African Veldt exhibit.

The zoo will open the African Veldt exhibit in the spring of 2008 and will begin construction on a new African Penguin habitat and a new cheetah exhibit set to open in the spring of 2009. The much-anticipated arrival of the Over-the-Jumps Carousel is expected in the fall of 2007 or spring of 2008.

The Little Rock Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). Look for the AZA logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you and a better future for all living things. With its more than 200 accredited members, AZA is a leader in global wildlife conservation and your link to helping animals in their native habitats. For more information, visit www.aza.org.

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