Minnesota Zoo {A Guest Post}

One thing I have learned over the years I have spent blogging is that there is a decidedly awesome group of bloggers in this state of ours.  One of the first things I did when I started my very first blog way back  when (2006!) was fill up my blog roll with local bloggers I was reading.  When I first started reading blogs I would search for Minnesota bloggers- it’s just so interesting to see how others view living in this same area.

Of course now that I’ve carved out this little space, I want to put some local bloggers I read out in the spotlight so I asked a few blogging friends to tell me about something or someplace they love right here in Minnesota.  First up: Jessica of Working Mama!  I’m excited she’s writing about the zoo because I am *not* a zoo person and from what everyone says, the Minnesota Zoo is a great place to visit, with or without kids!

Without further ado….

Hi! I am Jessica from Working Mama. Erin from Minnesota Mom kindly asked me to write about anything I wanted! What to do?? There are so many great things about MN, how could I choose? I decided to enlist the help of my Hubby. We went through our favorite restaurants and things we like to do and it hit us…The Minnesota Zoo.The Minnesota Zoo holds a really special connection to my husband and I.

When we were both 15 years old our parents got us involved in the Teen Volunteer program. I am pretty sure they still have it there, but we both had a great time. Mike did it for 2 years and was more involved in the MN Zoo camp stuff with the kids that were there. I only did it for 1 year and I was in the petting zoo (which has been replaced by the Farm). I was lucky enough to care for the goats, chickens, chinchillas, llamas. We also got to put on a bug puppet show a few times a day. It was a ton of fun and I learned so much.

 When Mike and I met we always knew we wanted to get a membership to the zoo. We didn’t however do this until we had our little girl. Gabby, who will be 2 in August, has been to the MN Zoo about 10 times (maybe more) in her life. I think she has been there 6 times in the past year! Gabby really loves the zoo.

If you have kids and love the zoo, I highly suggest a membership. It really pays for itself. We go for an hour or two, sometimes more each time, we don’t feel like we need to see everything so that we make the most of our money. If Gabby wants to sit and watch the pumas for a 1/2 hour (which did happen on our last visit) it’s okay, because we know in a week or two we can come back.  After 3 visits the first membership levels pays for itself*.

We have so many favorites at the zoo. Mike when he was younger (and until 2 years ago) would LOVE to sit and watch the sun bears on the Tropics Trail. Then they moved the sun bears to the Cleveland Zoo. Mike and I joke all the time that we are going to take a trip to Cleveland just to see them. He loves them that much.

Gabby and I have our favorites, mostly mine are the dolphins and the sloth on the Tropic Trail. But Gabby could really watch any of the animals. Her favorites are the Sea Otters/lions, the bears, penguins, pumas, wolves/coyotes and the wolverines. Oh and I can’t forget all the fish. She could sit and watch them for hours. In fact we sat and watched the Puma the last time we were there for a 1/2 hour. She is just like her father.

We are now members of the MN Zoo. Mostly because it saves us money, but also because we know that money helps take care of the animals and provides the opportunity for research and us to view them.  When Gabby is 3 and no longer free on my membership we will be upgrading our membership and get a tour of the behind the scenes. Mike and I love to see some of those things at the zoo. That’s what truly fascinates us.

If you have a chance to come to MN, you should check out the Zoo…and if you don’t, make sure to look up your local zoo to go and see the animals. It’s a wonderful experience especially for children.

Here are some pictures from our zoo visits the last time we were there.

Gabby checking out the Sea Lions


The Grizzly Bears


Posing for the camera with the prairie dogs. There is one in the lower right hand corner


Our 30 minute observation of the puma

Thanks Erin for letting me be a guest blogger!

*This is something that everyone has told me- get a membership, it practically pays for itself!

  • Jessica at Working Mama

    Thanks for letting me be a guest blogger! Love the blog!

    • Erin Clotfelter

      Thank you for being my first guest! You made *me* excited about the zoo! I had no idea they had volunteer programs for teens, that is really kind of awesome.

      • Jessica at Working Mama

        No problem! Anytime just let me know. The volunteer thing was a fun time in my life and now that I know that the hubby did it to, it holds such special meaning. I really hope that we can get our girls involved when they get old enough.

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