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Lowry Park offers holiday zoohs and aaahs
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Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo is transforming into a whimsical world of holiday magic for Wild Wonderland
TAMPA – Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo is transforming into a whimsical world of holiday magic for Wild Wonderland, presented by Publix Super Markets Charities. Tickets are available online and at the Zoo’s front gate.

On Dec. 7, 13-15, 17-23 and 26-30, more than a million twinkling lights will illuminate the night, and the forecast calls for 100 percent chance of snowfall with “Florida flurries.”

New this year, stroll the Treats & Treasures Hometown Village, a holiday fantasy village featuring a festive array of delightful shops with animated storefront windows, tasty treats and gifts. Heralding in the holiday season, a new Merry Music Tree of Lights overlooks the Village, presenting a spectacular light show choreographed to joyful holiday tunes.

Another “cool” addition to the seasonal celebration is a magical new Frozen Forest, a white crystal light experience. Enter through an icicle light tunnel with twinkling trees and thousands of white lights, faux snow and ice, and LED light animals.

Don’t miss Santa’s merry mammals - real reindeer - who have traveled south just for this event. Their best-dressed friends, the penguins, will also stay up late, and African animals will be on exhibit under the starry night sky in Safari Spectacular.

Families can join in some Reindeer Games, chill out on the Arctic Blast Ice Slide - 100 feet of frozen fun – and watch little elves jump for joy on new inflatables.

As always, guests will find dazzling decorations and radiant lights throughout the Zoo’s pathways, including the Enchanted Castle Light Show, a musical light show set against the beautiful backdrop of a castle entryway, and charming animated displays like the newly expanded Visions of Sugarplums.

More merriment awaits with returning family favorites like visits with Santa, free Zoo rides, Frosty & friends walk-around characters, decadent treats from the Zoo’s own Sweet Shoppe, Christmas cookie decorating, festive music, and wild gifts at the holiday shop.

‘Tis the season of giving, and by attending Wild Wonderland, guests are helping to support the Zoo, an independent 501(c)(3) charitable organization providing an exciting nature-based entertainment destination, center for wildlife conservation, and educational resource for the community.

Admission for Wild Wonderland is $14 for adults (ages 12 and over), $11 for children (ages 3-11), and free for ages 2 and under. Annual Zoo Pass holders receive discounts. Parking is free. Tickets may be purchased on the Wild Wonderland web site, at the front gate during business hours, or on the night of the event. Also find Wild Wonderland on Facebook.

Zoo School Holiday Programs

The Zoo School is also getting into the holiday spirit with wonderful winter programs:

• “Drop & Shop” camps offer weekend help during the busy holiday season. On Dec. 8, 14, 15, 21 or 22 parents can enroll children ages 3-12 in this fun day program (9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.) that includes Zoo hikes, an animal encounter and enrichment, a visit to the reindeer and more. The camp is $30 for one child and $10 for each additional child, per date. Space is limited and advance registration is required.

• Have a winter birthday child? Celebrate with a Wild Wonderland birthday party. These specialty parties are available on select event nights and include a private birthday party room, admission to Wild Wonderland for party guests, and more. To organize a party, call 813-935-8552 ext. 268.

• No school, no problem! The Zoo School offers holiday camps for students in grades K-8 during winter break (Dec. 23, Dec. 26-27 and Dec. 30-Jan. 3). Space is limited and advance registration is required.

About Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo

Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo is operated by the Lowry Park Zoological Society, an independent 501(c)(3) charitable organization committed to excellence in education, conservation and research. The Zoo is located at 1101 W. Sligh Avenue in Tampa, one mile west of I-275 (exit 48) and is open seven days a week, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Parking is free. Visit LowryParkZoo.com or call 813-935-8552 for information. Also find the Zoo on Facebook and Twitter.
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