I think it has to do with the lighting, or something.
And then the summer one starts on June 1, 2015, and so on…
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Mike Billings has the deets:
“Toddlers climbed all over the smaller River Play Area, which is designed for kids 6 months to 2 years old, while gaggles of older children scaled the nearby Polar Zone’s white structures, built for kids ages 2 through 5, and climbed through the Banyan Tree structure, constructed for kids ages 5 through 12.”
I defy you to visit and photograph this place well – sure is hard to show what it looks like. But Mark Simmons gets the job done here, with drawings.
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So what you do is check the place out on Free Day (free for San Francisco residents, that is – the next one is January 8th, 2014) and then decide if it’s worth it for you and the fam to get an annual Family Membership for $115.
If you all live close enough, it very well could be worth getting a membership just for the new playground.
See you there!
“After several years of fundraising, planning, and design, and over one year of construction, the Elinor Friend Playground at the San Francisco Zoo is ready for its grand re-opening. As part of The Americas Campaign capital campaign chaired by Dianne Taube, this $3.2 million project has been made possible in large part by the Friend Family and other generous donors. Additional naming rights within the Playground are still available at this time, totaling approximately $1 million (see the form below to help with this important project). This 36,000-square-foot, state-of-the art project is sure to ignite the imaginations of the 300,000 children of all ages and abilities who visit the Zoo each year.
The new playground is modeled after three distinct bio-regions, which take their themes from specific ecosystems and appeal to distinct age groups: a River Play Area for toddlers (6 months-2 years), a Polar Zone exploration space for pre-schoolers (2-5 years), and a Banyan Tree climbing structure for pre-teens (5-12 years). Along with striking natural forms, the architecture integrates a wide range of materials and textures in glorious detail that mimic those found in nature and encourage curiosity among young explorers. As an example, a charming frog sculpture in the River Play Area acts as a symbol of the Zoo’s mission to connect people with wildlife, inspire caring for nature, and advance conservation action. In support of this mission, a portion of the funds raised for the playground will go toward the Zoo’s Sierra Nevada Yellow Legged Frog Conservation Program. Click here for more information about this program.
Crawling through a beaver dam, sliding down an iceberg, or swinging through a tree, all children share opportunities for unique wildlife adventures, take age-appropriate risks, and immerse themselves in naturalistic environments. Each of the play structures is built with fully compliant ADA accessibility features to accommodate children with physical and mental disabilities, with a strong emphasis on exploration and adventure encouraged for all.
In partnership with the Mayor’s Office on Disability, the unique design of the Playground is the work of Scientific Art Studio, a multi-faceted design and fabrication facility located in Richmond, California. Led by Founder and Creative Director Ron Holthuysen, the Zoo’s Playground team includes artists and skilled craftspeople with experience in every material and technique imaginable, in particular reclaimed redwood tree trunks, sculptural cement composite on steel frames, woven rope, and even living vegetation. The contracting work on the project was done by Rudolph Commercial Interiors, Inc. (RCI), located in Emeryville, California.
Near the entrance to the Fisher Family Children’s Zoo and adjacent to the expansive Playfield Lawn, the Playground is located at the historic heart of the San Francisco Zoo. A natural extension of the Zoo’s Wellness Initiative, which focuses on the quality of life for all Zoo animals and visitors, the Playground will encourage movement and creativity for its guests and provide an excellent value to Zoo Members, who receive free admission each day of the year. Join today!
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At first I was thinking…Easter?
And then I thought Boston Marathon.
And then I realized it was for the GSW.
Is it a little cheesy to do this so far ahead of time?
Oakland doesn’t have much, you know.
They were going to get a pair of pandas from China, but that didn’t work out.
That’s Venus, the Evening Star, to the right of the dome, BTW.
And that’s a #5 Fulton hover bus heading inbound on McAllister…
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All the deets:
“Enjoy the holidays at the San Francisco Zoo! The reindeer are back and there’s a brand new “green” skating rink, plus much, much more. Check out all of the activities happening through New Year’s Day.
12 Days of Christmas – Dec 14, 2011 – Dec 25, 2011
This year, the San Francisco Zoo is taking “The 12 Days of Christmas” literally by enriching its animals with special holiday treats designed to encourage naturalistic behaviors. Each day between December 14 and December 25, at 2 p.m., a different animal will receive a holiday surprise. Check out the list below and make plans to see your favorite animal rummage, forage, play with and enjoy their holiday gifts.
The 12 Days of Christmas Schedule: 2 p.m. each day
December 14: Chimpanzee climbing
December 15: Lemurs a leaping
December 16: Giraffes nuzzling
December 17: Anteaters Investigating
December 18: Meerkats patrolling
December 19: Snow leopard hunting
December 20: Tamarins exploring
December 21: A polar bear sledding
December 22: Rhinos charging
December 23: Lions roaring
December 24: Prairie Dogs barking
December 25: Ground hornbills foraging
Reindeer Romp! – Nov 19, 2011 – Jan 01, 2012
Each day 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Reindeer Romp returns with your favorite reindeer friends. These four, wonderful animals mark the return of the holidays here at the Zoo and will be on exhibit every day starting November 19 through New Year’s Day. Stop by and check out the “real” story behind these amazing creatures and you just might learn a thing or two about why they are so special.
“Green” Holiday Skating Rink – Nov 5, 2011 – Jan 08, 2012
Weekdays 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Weekends & Holidays 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
This holiday season, take a spin on our brand new, environmentally friendly, synthetic skating rink made of recycled materials. It’s just as much fun as being on real ice! This eco-friendly skating rink will feel like the real thing but slightly slower – like skating on a frozen pond but without the need to bundle up. Great for beginners and kids wanting to get their feet wet, without getting their feet wet. Come give it a try now through New Year’s Day. Cost (includes skates): $5 per person
Holiday Discounts & Activities
Make a difference not just for the animals, but for our community too during this holiday season. Check out the following donation opportunities and discounts for you and your family.
San Francisco Fire Fighter’s Toy Drive
Dec 17, 2011 – Dec 18, 2011
Drop by the Zoo with an unwrapped toy, valued at $5 or more, and donate it to the San Francisco Fire Fighter’s Toy Program to receive one free kid’s pass. Plus, get an inside look at a vintage fire engine and take your photo with Santa ($5 suggested donation.) Limit one pass per family.”
See you there!
Here’s what’s up at our San Francisco Zoo on the day before Thanksgiving:
“Today, the Zoo’s lemurs received a Thanksgiving feast of some of their favorite foods – green beans; a fruit salad of apples, bananas, and grapes; sweet potatoes; and turkey made out of monkey chow. Their glasses were filled with apple juice. Sitting politely at a formal table, the lemurs sat respectfully and then ventured onto the table to enjoy their feast.”
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Now, check out their hours of operation:
SAN FRANCISCO ZOO LEMUR FUN FACTS:
The Zoo has a group of 15 lemurs on Lemur Forest – six ring-tailed, four red-ruffed, three black and whites; two blacks. There are nearly 100 species of lemurs in Madagascar today.
Endemic to the island of Madagascar off the coast of Africa, lemurs were named after the lemures or the ghosts/spirits of Roman mythology.
Lemurs can be very small, weighing as little as 1 oz., or up to 20 lbs.
Like their wild counterparts, the Zoo’s lemurs can be very vocal. Their loud calls can be heard throughout the day. However, they also communicate with scents by scent marking with urine as well as rubbing the scent glands located on their wrists on trees, bushes and the ground.
Lemurs are classified as threatened or endangered. They only inhabit approximately 10% of the island of Madagascar. Deforestation, hunting for bushmeat by native inhabitants, and live captures for the pet trade are the culprits of their decline in numbers.
Most lemurs are arboreal, thus the Zoo’s Lemur Forest is a perfect environment for them. The lemurs can be seen clinging to trees and leaping throughout the day.