Miller Park Zoo celebrates 130 years with luau themed birthday party

Local News

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD) – Miller Park Zoo leaders are celebrating 130 years of helping animals and teaching the Bloomington community about them on Saturday.

Zoo leaders kicked off a birthday celebration with a Luau-inspired party on Saturday.

“130 years is a very long time, the community just really seems to love our zoo and just rallies up behind us in fact that’s part of our history the reason why we even have this building behind us is because people in the town wanted to have a zoo so they rallied up, collected their money along with whatever the local government donated and they created a zoo,” said Miller Park Zoo Event Coordinator, Silvia Schuh.

Now more than a century later, the zoo still stands and the event coordinator said she’s seen many changes along the way and there’s now more to see. She said many come to see the flamingos with their fun, pink feathers.

“It’s a very popular attraction everyone usually comes in and they are in awe because they don’t really see the flamingos in our area,” said Schuh.

Animals aside, Schuh said planning for events like these was hard during changing COVID restrictions.

“I think this event has changed three times already a couple times I had to just scratch everything and start over just to keep up because the rules were changing and so fourth but I’m just really grateful that we can still host events like this,” said

One zoo-keeper said they aren’t the only ones excited to have people back, the animals are too.

“To spend a whole summer without visitors was very strange to them. Some of the animals like henry, is people orientated so it was very hard for him to have nobody in the zoo even though he got to go out and do this thing he was very sad that he didn’t have people to talk to at that time,” said Wendy Klesig.

Klesig said she can already sense excitement in the animals.

For more information on upcoming events, you can visit their website.

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