Zoo to close early July 18 to prepare for Zoolala

Oregon Zoo Foundation's Zoolala benefit offers chance to sip, savor and support

The Oregon Zoo will close at 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 18, to set up for the annual summer benefit, Zoolala. Visitors already in the zoo by that time may remain until 4 p.m.

The Oregon Zoo Foundation's 16th annual Zoolala benefit is presented by Spirit Mountain Casino with support from NW Natural and the region's top community-minded organizations and individuals. Animal lovers and party animals will spend a wild evening under the stars July 18 — sipping complimentary wine and beer, savoring small plates from the region's best restaurants and supporting a better future for wildlife.

"We are proud to support the zoo because we know that the health and well-being of our communities and our environment is in the hands of the next generation," said Bob Speltz from The Standard. "Zoolala is an opportunity to celebrate the zoo's impact and invest in inspiring educational programs."

Proceeds from Zoolala support the zoo's advances in animal welfare, life-changing educational experiences and programs to protect endangered species worldwide.

Starting at 5 p.m., guests can graze their way through a "Savory Safari," tasting culinary delights from more than 20 of the area's top restaurants while sipping on complimentary wine and craft beer. Guests will have the opportunity to explore areas of the zoo normally off-limits to the public, experience up-close encounters with exotic animals and enjoy live music at every turn, with performances by The Bylines, Moon by Night and Sabroso.
By 7:30 p.m., all will have reached their "Decadent Destination" — converging at the zoo concert lawn for a benefit program, desserts and dancing the night away with Patrick Lamb.

A generous $15,000 matching gift challenge from RayEtte Oregon Investments, LLC, will double the impact of donations made during the event or through the event website. Zoolala guests can also purchase raffle tickets from event volunteers for a chance to win a once-in-a-lifetime camping experience at the zoo.

For more information or to purchase tickets and tables, visit oregonzoo.org/zoolala or call 503-220-5738. General admission is $150, and VIP tickets are $250 and provide guests early access beginning at 5 p.m. Creative cocktail attire is encouraged. Guests must be 21 or older with valid ID.

The Oregon Zoo is a service of Metro and is dedicated to its mission of inspiring the community to create a better future for wildlife. Committed to conservation, the zoo is currently working to save endangered California condors, Columbia Basin pygmy rabbits, Oregon silverspot and Taylor’s checkerspot butterflies, Western pond turtles and Oregon spotted frogs. Other projects include studies on black rhinos, Asian elephants, polar bears and bats.
 
The zoo relies in part on community support through donations to the Oregon Zoo Foundation to undertake these and many other animal welfare, education and sustainability programs. The zoo is located five minutes from downtown Portland, just off Highway 26 at exit 72. The zoo is also accessible by MAX light rail line. Visitors who travel to the zoo via MAX receive $1.50 off zoo admission. Find fare and route information online or by calling TriMet Customer Service at 503-238-RIDE (7433).
 
General zoo admission is $10.50 (ages 12-64), $9 for seniors (65 and up), $7.50 for children (ages 3-11) and free for those 2 and younger; 25 cents of the admission price helps fund regional conservation projects through the zoo’s Future for Wildlife program. A parking fee of $4 per car is also required. Additional information is available by calling 503-226-1561.

Media contact: 

Hova Najarian at 503-220-5714 or hova.najarian@oregonzoo.org
Melinda Burpo at 503-525-4239 or melinda.burpo@oregonzoo.org