Education Department

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Education Department

The Education Department Staff and Docents conducted:

35 Animal Encounters

37 Outreaches

4 Second Grade Programs – Two To The Zoo

10 Third Grade Programs – Curric-Zoo-lum

1 First Grade Programs – 1st Class Zoo

3 Overnight Programs – Mix of Snoozes and Wild Nights

1 Scout Programs – Mix of Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts

2 Homeschool Programs

1 Create Your Own ZooVenture – Rainforest program

3 Learning Safari Tours

1 Make a Wish with Primate Department

Storytime at the Zoo- every Wednesday in May

Coming Up Next Month:

Night Hike – June 11, 2011 – Zoo Guests will experience the Zoo after dark, without having to spend the night.

Summer Camp for ages 6-12 begins Monday June 13, 2011 – Already have some weeks sold out.

Cub Club for ages 3-5 begins Tuesday June 14, 2011

Animal Department
Animal Acquisition:

0.0.2 Silvery-cheeked hornbills hatched. The Animal Staff is busy raising one of the chicks as it was felt the older chick was outcompeting the younger one at feeding time.

0.1 Baron’s green racer was donated
Animal Dispositions:

      1. New Caledonian giant gecko was sent to Potawatomi Zoo

0.0.1 Everglade’s rat snake died


The two-toed sloth #1602, Tipper Too, went to the VMC for a colonoscopy. No significant findings but biopsies did confirm gastritis and colitis. This has been a challenging case for veterinarians and staff, but we continue to explore our treatment options. She is currently on a regimen of Probiotics to assist in re-establishing the appropriate gut flora in her system.

At that time we also sent a female prehensile-tailed porcupine #1461 to diagnose an ongoing foot lesion (suspect an imbedded quill) and female cotton-top tamarin #1571 for an ongoing arm issue (suspect a bite wound). Both are healing slowly.

Other Notes:

  • Bonnie Breitbeil attended the AZA Felid TAG meeting hosted by the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha, NE and conducted a Clouded Leopard SSP Master Planning meeting.

  • Danielle Lints attended a Rhino Keepers workshop hosted by Fossil Rim in Glen Rose, TX.

  • Bernie Bartosch and Danielle Lints visited the camel, Gus and goat, Billie at their pasture to familiarize themselves with handling procedures and general training.

  • Through the Florida State Wildlife Grant we received, Jen Stabile has continued conducting amphibian disease surveys throughout the Central Florida region. This month areas surveyed were Avon Park Air Force Base and Jonathan Dickinson State Park, Jupiter, FL. Many of our staff and volunteers have been able to participate in this important work.

  • Bonnie and Courtney Donner met with a Boy Scout to discuss a potential Eagle Scout project to construct an off-exhibit bird/small mammal enclosure.

  • Maintenance, Horticulture and Animal Department Staffs worked hard and very quickly to complete the renovation of the elephant enclosure to provide a home for the camel, Gus. Gus is expected to arrive June 8th.

Maintenance Department

  • Our work for May has included finishing out the elephant compound to receive Gus the Camel in June. 
  • We have also been active in the design of our upcoming Otter Exhibit.  A trip to Disney produced some great ideas that we could incorporate in our exhibit.  Based on our latest information from our design engineer, Jorge Borrelli, we should have the permit drawing near the end of June or first part of July.  If permitting approval takes two months and with eight months of construction time the otters exhibit should open sometime in April or May of next year.  We are really excited to get this project started. 

  • The remaining portion of the Month went to work tickets and building nesting boxes for some pregnant mothers.

Guest Services Department
In an effort to take advantage of the hungry ZOOM Air traffic that does not enter the Zoo, Guest Services opened its new Concessions satellite

at the area of the old “Comfort Station”. On weekends, holidays and during peak times, this satellite will be open and serving grilled hot dogs & hamburgers, chips, drinks, ice cream and seasonal fruit.

In the Densch Center in May, we hosted meetings or parties for Mastec Corporation, Preferred Guest Services, Wilson Elementary School 5th Grade, David Weekley Homes and the American Cancer Society. We also partnered again with the Foundation for Seminole County Schools on their annual dinner for participants in their Take Stock in Children program.

Hard work, time and effort were certainly not exclusive to the Guest Services Department for our largest endeavor in May. On Friday, May 6 about 300 participants from 40 teams were here for the 18 hour event that is Relay for Life. This is the American Cancer Society’s number one fund raiser and the Zoo has now hosted the Sanford Relay for 5 years. We estimate that on Friday night there were 650 people (including participants) here to celebrate and fight back. We had a net goal of $92,000 and to date we are at $101,000. There was an incredible collaborative effort by Maintenance, Horticulture and the Relay Logistics team to transform (in 4 hours) the area between the Admissions and the Densch Center into a small town for the night. There was lots of good food available, games to play, music to hear, but, undoubtedly two of the Relay favorites and best fund raisers of the night are the Zoo’s night tours, and Breakfast by Joe & team. Big kudos to the Zoo team and its captains, Dawn Danzi & Shannon Rinninger, we were the only Platinum level team (over $7500 raised) and stood second only to CPH Engineers at Jade level. Thanks to our sponsors: Central Florida Regional Hospital, Wharton-Smith, Inc., CPH Engineering and Vitas.

Communications Department

  • 137 Media pick-ups

  • Northland Church filmed segments for Summer Camps

  • Working with professional printer and issued the first upgraded ZOOViews to quality paper and better design

  • Added Zoo members to monthly e-blast and view rate increased by 3%

  • Segway opened and now appears on Website, Facebook, Tweeter and various print and websites in Central Florida

  • Developed first draft for corporate memberships

  • Helped with solicitation of raffle and bag items and worked Tiger Tee-Off Golf Tournament

  • Sold mulligan’s and raffle tickets at Ameriprise gold tournament to raise money for Zoo - $580 raised.

  • Completed Donor Perfect evaluation and submitted

  • Held meeting with guest services staff to discuss new changes to membership policies

  • Developed new logo for Night Hikes Series

  • Developed intern program for two summer interns

  • Developed details for photo contest to begin mid-June

  • Researched financial planners list for future charitable giving promotion

  • Attended 12 meetings, six executive events and three leadership seminars, as well as two Kennedy Center conference calls

  • Attended via conference call State of Florida Communications Committee

  • Canceled AAA trip to Costa Rica – did not have enough interest

  • Worked with Education Department to secure an ongoing certified sign language contact
  • Worked with former board member on a potential partnership with Formosa Gardens, Kissimmee

  • Worked with Seminole County Public Schools on the summer reading program partnership

  • Submitted a State of FL Division of Cultural Affairs grant and updated the rollover of two existing proposals

  • Researched 39 potential grants. Submitted grants to: Bank of America (hopefully 3rd time is a charm) for GOS; Wayne M. Densch Charities for education admissions/programs; Ameriprise to continue the invertebrate outreach program to counties we are normally unable to reach; Wells Fargo Community Fund; mid-year reports for Magruder; rollover report for Chisholm for Traveling Zoo Tales; and working on a grant for ZOOart education from the Knight Foundation.

  • Nominated for Non-Profit of the Year for Small Business Week with the Seminole County Regional Chamber of Commerce.

  • Setting up promotions for July 3rd with Sony Picture’s “Zookeeper” movie, Stauffer’s promotion, and 2012 Ford Focus Southeast Tour

  • NY Life did second Child ID program for Party for the Planet

  • Facebook fans has grown to 3260 (as of 6/6/11)- 165 individual conversations to maintain

  • Tripadvisor rating has grown to 2 of 10 attractions for our area, surpassing the Rivership Romance and several airboat tours. More positive ratings are encouraged to grow to number ONE! We continue to monitor reviews and respond to all.

  • Participated in a “Mother’s Day Giveaway Blitz” through the website, Received 43 comments on their page, plus many posted to their own social media pages
  • Connected with Orange County Commissioner Jennifer Thompson who provided Bon Jovi tickets for the golf tournament. She is a fan of the Zoo and will help us out whenever possible.

  • Connected with Samantha Rollins, wife of radio talk show host Russ Rollins. Attended musical production at Midway Elementary with her. Will be meeting with her again in the near future to discuss how she can connect us to companies involved with the radio station.

  • Met with Sharon Sears of the CVB is discuss the current process for Fam trips and how we could tweak it moving forward

  • Participated in Segway’s “dry run” to experience the attraction first hand, which assists us in selling it to the public. Posted on all Zoo internet sites.

  • May 1             Playground Magazine Music & Arts Fest, estimated attendance 10,000

  • May 5             Montana Wish Kid – Primate Keeper wish, Dylan and Family

  • May 6             Golf Tournament Pictures                                                          

  • May 7             Chairs for Charity Mustard Seed Event, estimated attendance 250

  • May 7             PNC Downtown Branch Grand Opening, estimated attendance 75

  • May 10           Write up for Orange TV – Summer Camps, unlimited viewing

  • May 11           TD Bank tour

  • May 12            SCCVB Luncheon Fashion Show, estimated attendance 100

  • May 14            Family Festival Altamonte Springs Crane Roost, est. attendance 15,000

  • May 14            DeLand Chamber Expo, estimated attendance 100
  • May 15            Jewish Festival Cranes Roost, estimated attendance 500

  • May 17            Oviedo Chicks – summer happenings at the Zoo, unlimited viewing

  • May 21            Environmental Studies Center Wildlife Appreciation Day, 200

  • May 21            Fringe Fest, estimated attendance 150

  • May 21            Sanford Seminole Art Assoc. Train Project Proposal, est. attendance 20

  • May 22 Fringe Fest, Orange County, estimated attendance 100

  • May 25            FAIRWINDS Credit Union

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