Willow Park Zoo will be welcoming Santa and reindeer soon

After a very busy summer the Willow Park Zoo is only open on weekends now but the zoo’s director Troy Cooper said it is almost time for the Second Annual Reindeer Trek, a Holiday festival for families.

Cooper said the four-day event opens on Saturday, November 29 from 12 noon to 8 p.m., continues Monday, December 1st and Wednesday December 3rd from 4 to 8 p.m., then Saturday, December 6th from 12 noon to 8 p.m. On KVNU’s Crosstalk program Friday, he invited everyone to attend.

“We have two reindeer at the zoo and they are going to team up with Santa Claus,” Cooper said. “He’s going to come and make a visit to our zoo. We’ll have some facilities for him to greet the children and those who want to talk to him.

“We’ll have refreshments and donuts and hot chocolate and things for people to enjoy. We’ll have some lights. We’re going to try and increase it from what we did last year.”

In fact Cooper said you can view the zoo’s animals, play games, get a picture with Santa and start your shopping at the new gift shop at the Willow Park Zoo.

Cooper said the new gift shop is being constructed and is expected to be finished soon. Cooper said the new 600 square foot building will also serve as an admission building.

“When people enter the zoo we are creating a whole new entry way,” Cooper explained. “That is the project over the winter and probably into next spring.

“It will create a whole new entrance into the zoo and how people view it as they first come in. We want to make it a nice, calm, relaxing, friendly, beautiful site for people to enjoy the zoo.”

He said locals will be able to sell some of their items at the new gift shop and there will be a lot of other items, including Christmas ideas.

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