Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Buffalo Zoo to Receive Funds Raised for Giraffe Structure

The Buffalo Zoo will receive funds raised from a raffle campaign on New Years Eve during a check presentation ceremony and name drawing to determine the winner of a new car.

The “Share a Little Shade” raffle campaign was organized and managed by Community Papers of Western New York (CPOWNY). The Zoo was approached by CPOWNY early in 2015 to launch a campaign to raise $25,000 needed for a shade structure for the giraffe yard.

Throughout 2015, CPOWNY readers and members of the Western New York community purchased raffle tickets for the chance to win a one-year lease from Towne MINI, or $5,000 cash. A giraffe-wrapped MINI Cooper made multiple appearances at the Zoo, as well as taking center stage at regional events throughout the year to draw participants for the raffle. The raffle entries were in the thousands and exceeded the $25,000 goal.  The structure will be installed in the Zoo’s giraffe yard in 2016.

The winning name will be drawn at Towne MINI (8240 Main St.) in Williamsville on Thursday, December 31 at 10:30 a.m. Representatives from the Zoo will be present for the event and presented with a check for the funds raised. The winner will also be announced via the Zoo’s social media platforms.

“The fundraising efforts for this project would not have been successful without the help of CPOWNY and their readers,” said Buffalo Zoo President & CEO Donna M. Fernandes, PhD. “We are so very grateful to them as well as Towne MINI, Lamar Advertising, and Paula’s Donuts. Their tireless efforts helped to raise the funds we needed for this important project.”

The structure is an improvement recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation; education; science; and recreation, by means of an accreditation process every five years.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Tree Lighting (and Reduced Admission) This Saturday!

The Buffalo Zoo will offer reduced admission rates for its first ever holiday tree lighting event.

The Zoo’s holiday tree lighting event will take place on Saturday, December 5. Guests who enter the Zoo after 3 p.m. that day will receive a reduced admission rate of $5 per person. (Free for members!)

The Zoo’s first ever tree lighting event will feature carol singers, hot cocoa, a visit from Santa, and more seasonal fun, all leading up to the tree lighting at 5 p.m.

For more information about the Zoo’s holiday tree lighting event, call (716) 995-6133.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Celebrate World Anteater Day on Saturday!

Looking for something fun to do with the family this weekend? Join us as we celebrate World Anteater Day!

Stop by the M&T Bank Rainforest Falls exhibit for special anteater-themed activities from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. on Sunday, November 29.

Schedule of Activities

(in M&T Bank Rainforest Falls exhibit)

  • 11 a.m. - Anteater enrichment demonstration and keeper talk
  • 12 p.m. - Anteater feeding and keeper talk 
  • 12:30 p.m. - Story time in the lobby!
  • 1 p.m. - Anteater enrichment demonstration and keeper talk

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Cyber Monday Sale on Zoo Memberships

The Buffalo Zoo will offer a discount on membership purchases during a Cyber Monday sale event, just in time for the holidays.

The sale will take place on Monday, November 30 from 12:00 a.m. until 11:59 p.m. A discount of $20 will be given on purchases of all membership levels during the sale, for new members only. The discount will be applied to any memberships purchased on the Zoo’s website, using discount code CM15.

All membership levels include:

  • FREE admission to the Zoo
  • FREE subscription to ZooLog
  • Two guest passes 
  • One parking voucher
  • Membership window decal
  • Discount at the Zootique gift shop
  • Reduced or free admission at over 100 zoos and aquariums
  • Discounts on birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Special MEMBERS ONLY events
  • Bonus benefits at area businesses

The Buffalo Zoo Membership Levels Are: 

$40  $20 -  Individual
Covers only the person whose name appears on the card.

$55  $35 - Individual PLUS
Covers only the person whose name appears on the card.
Includes five parking vouchers and ten ride tickets.
Includes one guest per Zoo visit.

$60 $40 - Grandparents
Covers up to two grandparents and up to five grandchildren on each visit.

$70 $50 - Grandparents PLUS
Covers up to two grandparents and up to five grandchildren on each visit.
Includes five parking vouchers and ten ride tickets.
Includes one guest per Zoo visit.

$75 $55 - Family
Covers up to two adults and their children (to 21 years of age) residing in the household.

$90 $70 - Family PLUS
Covers up to two adults and their children (to 21 years of age) residing in the household. Includes five parking vouchers and ten ride tickets.
Includes one guest per Zoo visit.

$135 $115 - Supporting
Cover up to two adults and their children (to 21 years of age) residing in the household. Includes five parking vouchers and ten ride tickets.
Includes two guests per Zoo visit, PLUS a Zoo tote bag and recognition in the Annual Report.

$250 $230 - Sponsor
Same as Supporting, PLUS Zoo note paper, and an invitation to the Thank You Reception.

For more information about the Zoo’s Cyber Monday membership sale, email, call the membership office at (716) 995-6131, or CLICK HERE.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Buffalo Zoo Unveils Plastic Bag Polar Bear Sculpture

The Buffalo Zoo has installed a new feature in the Arctic Edge exhibit.

A sculpture of a polar bear named Terra was added to the Zoo’s new Arctic Edge exhibit. The installation was constructed out of over 1,500 plastic shopping bags, the amount used by the average American family of four in one year.

One of the main goals of the new Arctic Edge exhibit is to educate people about environmental conservation, and why protecting the environment is important for the survival of not just polar bears, but all species,” said the Zoo’s curator of education, Tiffany Vanderwerf. “A lot of carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere when plastic bags are produced, and that carbon dioxide is causing the earth’s sea ice to melt. Polar bears and other Arctic species depend on sea ice for survival. We hope that this sculpture will serve as a visual reminder for families that the actions they take at home can have a big impact on the natural environment, and the survival of these animals.”

Buffalo Zoo staff and volunteers spent months collecting the bags and constructing the sculpture. It will be on display near the Arctic Edge Interpretive Center.

Megan Monaco, a keeper who works closely with the polar bears and who spearheaded the effort to create the sculpture said, “Our amazing docents and volunteers did a fantastic job and worked incredibly hard on this project, and I'm so thankful for all they did to help me with it.

“We wanted to show visitors just what a large impact their actions can have on the natural world. This is the amount of bags that just one family uses in a year, and when you see it all together, you realize just how much plastic that is. These bags don’t go away once they are thrown out; they just sit in land fills and can end up in our waterways and can harm wild animals. We hope this will encourage our visitors to reuse plastic bags whenever they can, and to make the switch over to reusable shopping bags, to help protect not just polar bears, but all animals and our entire planet.”

The Arctic Edge, presented by Tops Friend Markets, is open during regular Zoo hours, and free to visit with regular Zoo admission. For more information, visit or call (716) 837-3900.


A Fundraiser with Alex & Ani Buffalo

Join us on Monday, November 9 for a fun shopping experience to benefit the Buffalo Zoo. 15% of any purchase made in the store during the event will help the Zoo purchase auction items for the Zoo's brand new fundraising event, Arctic Whiteout. You can even purchase items and give them directly to the Zoo for the auction. We hope to see you there!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Come Play in Our New Nature Playground!

We've opened a brand new nature playground area for visitors!

The playground, which is located within the Zoo’s Delta Sonic Heritage Farm exhibit, is intended to encourage “nature play” among child visitors. Nature play is unstructured childhood play in wild areas. Studies show that there are many positive impacts of such play time on a child's social, emotional, intellectual, and physical well-being.

It is meant as a space for kids to figure out how they want to use the natural elements for unstructured play time,” said the Zoo’s Education Curator, Tiffany Vanderwerf. “As a conservation organization, the Buffalo Zoo wants to encourage nature play because studies also indicate that play in nature is the most common influence on the development of conservation values and behaviors. We LOVE that! It is right in line with our mission. We're sure it will be super popular. Kids and parents asked us about the area every day while it was being built and couldn't wait to come back to try it out.

The new nature playground features a hollow log for crawling, a sand dig pit, log balance beams, a log stepping garden, and log tables and chairs for resting and quiet play. Most of the materials were sourced locally from fallen trees at the Zoo, or locations nearby. The giant hollow log was donated by Tree Care of New York.

The play space was made possible through a grant from Nature Play Begins at Your Zoo & Aquarium, a collaboration between the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and The Walt Disney Company to provide financial, logistical, and creative support to zoos and aquariums seeking to increase or enhance family-centered nature experiences in their communities.

The nature playground is free with regular Zoo admission.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The 2016 Calendar Features ZOO BABIES!

The Buffalo Zoo’s 2016 wall calendar is now available for purchase.

The wall calendar, presented by the Women’s  Board of the Buffalo Zoo, showcases photos taken by participants in the Zoo’s annual photo contest. It features stunning full-color photos of the animals and highlights a recent baby boom, Zoo events, and fun facts about all of the animals pictured.

This year’s calendar is priced at only $10 and includes $50 in coupons for discounts on Zoo admission, membership, concessions, gift shop purchases, birthday parties, and more!

It’s not too early to pick up these very popular calendars, which sold out last year. They are available in the Zootique gift shop or by calling (716) 995-6131. All proceeds from the wall calendars will benefit the Zoo’s Adopt-an-Animal program, a dedicated funding source which provides food for the animals.

The 2016 Buffalo Zoo wall calendar is sponsored by:

Bob & John's La Hacienda/The Wellington Pub
Christopher Scinta Photography
Daily Planet Coffee Company
Fairy Cakes Cupcakery
Fleet Feet
Johnny's Meats
Market on Elmwood
Michael Donnelly Interiors & Gallery
Mighty Moe's
Savory Sips / Daisy’s Dog House
Talking Leaves
The Tree House Toy Store

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Shop for the Zoo Animals at Tops Friendly Markets

Help fill the pantry for the Buffalo Zoo’s animals this fall and winter! On Saturday, August 15, 2015 from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m., shoppers at participating Tops Friendly Markets locations will have the opportunity to purchase an extra gift for the Zoo to help keep the animals happy and healthy.

After selecting items from the Zoo’s grocery wish list, which will be provided at each location, shoppers can leave their gift with a Zoo volunteer in the store lobby. All of these generous donations will then be used as special enrichment treats to promote the animals’ natural behaviors and to stimulate them physically and mentally.

Requested grocery items include: whole grain, low sugar cereals; dog biscuits (all sizes); canned dog food, canned cat food, extracts and spices; peanut butter; plastic toys (Frisbees and balls); rawhide chews; soft cat treats; as well as a variety of other items. Participating Tops locations include:

  • TOPS Friendly Markets 2101 Elmwood Ave. Buffalo  NY  14207
  • TOPS Friendly Markets S 6150 South Park Ave. Hamburg NY 14075
  • TOPS Friendly Markets 1740 Sheridan Dr. Buffalo  NY  14223
  • TOPS Friendly Markets 2351 Maple Rd. Williamsville  NY  14221

With an annual grocery bill of $250,000, providing food and treats for more than 1,200 animals at the Zoo is a tremendous task. The Buffalo Zoo wishes to thank shoppers in advance for helping the animals and supporting Tops Friendly Markets, one of the Zoo’s most generous sponsors!

For more information about the Zoo’s annual adoption program, please call (716) 995-6131 or visit us online!

Friday, July 10, 2015

Zoo Adds Downtown Stops for Zoofari Shuttle Service

The Buffalo Zoo has added two downtown stops to the Zoofari shuttle service schedule to tap into the Buffalo tourism market.

Last month, the Zoo announced partnerships with Medaille College and Nichols School to make ancillary parking lots available for patrons. The Zoo also unveiled a new Zoofari shuttle bus which will run between the Medaille lot and the Zoo’s main entrance.

In addition to the Medaille parking lot to manage overflow parking, the shuttle will now make morning and afternoon pick-ups at the Hilton Garden Inn Buffalo in Lafayette Square, and the Hyatt Regency at Fountain Plaza. Zoo officials hope that these two stops will be accessible to tourists staying at many of downtown’s most popular hotels.

“Tourism in Buffalo is expanding rapidly,” noted the Zoo’s marketing manager, Todd Geise. “We want to be a part of that expansion and excitement. We’re adding shuttle stops downtown for tourists who are looking for a nice way to spend an afternoon in Buffalo with their families, in addition to whatever else has brought them to visit our city.”

The Zoo has also made Zoo admission tickets available for purchase at hotels including the Hilton Garden Inn, Comfort Suites, Embassy Suites, Courtyard Mariott, Hyatt Regency, and the Hampton Inn.

The Zoofari Shuttle runs Friday through Sunday. A complete schedule for the Zoofari Shuttle follows.

For additional information about parking options at the Zoo, or the Zoofari schedule, visit or the Zoo’s Facebook page.


Hilton Garden Inn

Hyatt Regency















Medaille Drop-off FINAL

Hilton Garden Inn

Hilton Garden Inn
Hyatt Regency

Hyatt Regency

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Help Buy the Animals Lunch!

The Buffalo Zoo invites patrons to support the animals by buying them lunch.

The Buffalo Zoo has an annual grocery bill over $250,000 to feed over 1,400 animal
residents. During the month of July, Zoo visitors will have the opportunity to help cover that cost and “buy the animals lunch!”

Throughout the month of July, Zoo visitors can choose to add $1 to their Zoo admission, food, gift shop, or membership purchases. All proceeds will benefit the Adopt-an-Animal program and will be used to purchase food for the Zoo’s animal residents.

In addition to the “Buy the Animals Lunch” summer campaign, animal adoptions are
available year-round. Several adoption levels, starting at $25 with corresponding benefits are available. Participants can choose their own favorite animal to support or purchase a gift adoption to help make a difference.

For more information about the Zoo’s adoption program, please call (716) 995-6131 or visit the Zoo online.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Stay Late on Fridays in July & August

The Buffalo Zoo will offer extended hours every Friday in July and August for our Ferocious Fridays series.

During Ferocious Fridays, admission gates will remain open until 7:30 p.m. every Friday in July and August. Visitors and their families can remain on grounds until 8:30 p.m. to enjoy the Zoo and observe the animals during the evening hours.

First Niagara customers will receive a discount admission price of $5 per person after 3 p.m. when they present their First Niagara Bank debit or credit card at the admission gates. Discount coupons for all Zoo visitors are available in select WNY print publications.

Ferocious Fridays at the Buffalo Zoo are presented by First Niagara.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Check Out the New Zoofari Shuttle!

The Buffalo Zoo today unveiled a brand new custom-designed “Zoofari” shuttle during a media event.

The Zoofari shuttle will run between the Zoo and a parking lot at Medaille College on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. The Zoo announced last week that it has partnered with Nichols School and Medaille College to make additional nearby parking available. Parking in these overflow lots and the shuttle service will be free for Zoo visitors.

During the announcement, Zoo President & CEO, Dr. Donna Fernandes emphasized the Zoo’s focus on customer service. She said, “We have long-recognized that we face a parking challenge as a result of […] growth. Because parking is a first step to customer satisfaction, we are happy to have established partnerships with Nichols School, Medaille College, and MASH Urgent Care to help us better serve our customers.”

The custom-designed Zoofari shuttle is wrapped in a full color graphic that features some of the Zoo’s most popular animal residents, including lions, zebras, giraffes, and gorillas. The shuttle’s graphic wrap was sponsored by MASH Urgent Care. 

Shuttle Schedule:

Medaille Lot
11:00 a.m.
11:30 a.m.
12:10 p.m.
12:40 p.m.
1:10 p.m.
1:40 p.m.
2:20 p.m.*
*Last shuttle to Zoo

Zoo Entrance
1:00 p.m.
1:30 p.m.
2:10 p.m.
2:40 p.m.
3:10 p.m.
3:40 p.m.
4:10 p.m.
4:45 p.m.**
**Last shuttle to Medaille

Thursday, June 18, 2015

New Zoo Shuttle Service and Extra Parking!

In an effort to provide guests with expanded parking options, the Buffalo Zoo will offer ancillary parking lots as well as a shuttle service for visitors.

The Zoo has partnered with Nichols School and Medaille College to make additional nearby parking available. Parking in these overflow lots and the shuttle service will be free for Zoo visitors.

The Nichols lot, located at 1250 Amherst St., will be available to Zoo patrons on weekends starting on June 27. The lot is located just a short walk from the Zoo’s main entrance.

The parking lot at Medaille College is located at 18 Agassiz Circle, just down the street from the Zoo’s main entrance on Parkside Ave.

The Zoo will unveil the new, custom designed “Zoofari” shuttle, sponsored by MASH Urgent Care, at a public event next week. The shuttle, which can hold 20 people as well as strollers, and other personal items, will run on Parkside Ave. between the Medaille lot and the Zoo. It will operate from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from June 26 until the end of September.

The Zoo will reveal the exciting new shuttle design in a special preview event next week!

“The increased number of Zoo visitors often means our small parking lot is full shortly after we open,” said the Zoo’s president & CEO, Donna Fernandes. “We’re hopeful that by forming these partnerships and making new parking options available to our patrons, we’ll be making it easier for people who want to visit us.”

The Zoo has experienced steady growth in attendance numbers in recent years, increasing the strain on the small lot, which has fewer than 330 parking spaces. The Zoo’s popularity is expected to grow even more as the new Arctic Edge polar bear exhibit is slated to open this September.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Celebrate Monica the Rhino's 1st Birthday!

We can't believe it's been a whole year since little Monica was born! To celebrate her 1st birthday, the Zoo will host a special party for her this Sunday, June 14th. A team of keepers have put together a schedule of fun birthday activities for visitors. All activities will take place between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. near the rhino yard, and are free with regular Zoo admission.

  • 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
    • Raffle of paintings by Monica
    • Meet "Hank the Tank," the Zoo's rhino mascot
    • Perry's Ice Cream, while supplies last
  • 1:00 p.m. - Birthday cake for Monica the rhino
  • 1:30 p.m. - Question and Answer session with a rhino keeper
  • 2:30 p.m. - Birthday rhino enrichment, Q&A Session with a rhino keeper
Monica is much bigger than she was when this was taken a year ago!
Photo by Kelly Ann Brown.

The Buffalo Zoo thanks Rhino Linings of Buffalo for presenting "All Things Rhino" at the Buffalo Zoo. Rhino Linings is the leader in sprayed-on truck bed liner protection, providing lasting solutions for a wide range of applications.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Buffalo Zoo to Open Preschool This Fall

The Buffalo Zoo will offer a brand new preschool program beginning in September, 2015.

Families who wish to learn more about the preschool classes can attend open houses at the Zoo on Wednesday, May 20 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. or Saturday May 30 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

“We feel that the Zoo offers a really unique learning opportunity for children,” said Tiffany Vanderwerf, the Zoo’s curator of education. “We have a giant outdoor classroom with endless possibilities for exploration and discovery.  This kind of learning environment is unlike any other. By immersing children in it, we hope to develop a love and appreciation of the natural world that will last a lifetime.”

Zoo classroom before it was set up for the new preschool classes.
The classroom is set up and ready for the Zoo's first preschool classes!
The full school year program will offer children daily access to Zoo grounds including a brand new nature playground in the Delta Sonic Heritage Farm exhibit. Classes will be taught using the Reggio-Emilia-inspired approach to childhood education. The program’s manager and head teacher will be the Zoo’s early childhood programs specialist, Scott Lawson. Mr. Lawson earned his bachelor’s degree in early childhood education, as well as a master’s degree in educational psychology. He has more than ten years of experience in early childhood education, teaching preschool and kindergarten, and working extensively with young children for the Buffalo Zoo’s education department.

The program offers two options:
Two days per week - Tuesdays and Thursdays - 9:00am to 11:30am
Three days per week - Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays - 9:00am to 11:30 am

Registration for preschool at the Zoo is open now. Click here for the registration form. The program is open to children three or four years in age as of September 1, 2015. Each class will be limited to 16 students. Enrollment will be on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, call (716) 995-6140 or email

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Lineup for Third Annual BuffaLoveFest Includes Tribute to Lance Diamond

The Buffalo Zoo has announced the lineup for their third annual BuffaLoveFest, an event featuring all things “Buffalo.”
BuffaLoveFest will take place on Friday, May 29, 2015 from 5:30 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. at the Buffalo Zoo. Click here for tickets. 

In the past, BuffaLoveFest events have featured the BuffaLoveBirds All Star Band fronted by the late Lance Diamond. This year, the group will perform a tribute to the singer including “Lancefication,” a song that was co-produced by Diamond and the Goo Goo Dolls’ Robby Takac. The BuffaLoveBird band lineup features popular local musicians Ali Critelli, Eric Crittenden, Vinne DeRosa, Rob Lynch, and Mike Wagner.

Other performers at the event will be local favorites Blackrock Zydeco and the Albrights, with DJ sets by Camaican Sensation.

“This year’s event will have eighteen food trucks,” said the Zoo’s senior events coordinator, Katie Jordan. “In past years, the lines for food trucks have been really long, and many of the trucks ran out of food before the end of the event. We hope that the additional food trucks this year will accommodate the large hungry crowd!”

The Zoo has partnered with local breweries to offer exclusive BuffaLoveFest brews from Flying Bison, Resurgence, and Big Ditch Brewing. The Zoo has also added wine from Chateau Buffalo to this year’s offerings.

In addition to Buffalonians’ favorite bands, food trucks, and beers and wine; the event will include Buffalo trivia, a DRINKO tournament, and a variety of Buffalo-centric vendors including local artisans, t-shirt printers, jewelers, and more!

Click Here for the full list of vendors!

The event is limited to ages 21 and up. Tickets cost $20 in advance and $30 at the door, and include two drinks. To order tickets online, please visit Tickets can also be purchased at any WNY Noco Express location.

BuffaLoveFest is presented by TryIt Distributing and sponsored by Buffalo Metropolitan Federal Credit Union. Media sponsors include ArtVoice,, Buffalo Spree, 97 Rock, 103.3 The Edge,, Community Papers of WNY, and Fox 29/MyTV Buffalo.

Friday, May 1, 2015

BuffaLoveFest 2015 LineUp

2015 Lineup


The Bar

Food Trucks



Buffalo Artisans








Thank You to our 2015 Sponsors! 

Presenting Sponsor

Event Sponsor

In Association with

Media Sponsors

Click Here to purchase tickets to BuffaLoveFest!