Thursday, July 25, 2013

After Hours

      With our memberships we are invited to many "after hours/ member's only" nights and while we don't always take advantage of nearly as many as we should, we have learned that friendship night at Southwick's Zoo is not to be missed.  Last year the boys made masks, had their faces painted, got free ice cream and enjoyed a fun scavenger hunt through the zoo.  This year we planned ahead and actually had friends with us!  We headed out right around dinner last night with the two younger boys, their friends, and one of the friend's families. 
     The boys were all so excited- running from exhibit to exhibit.  The zoo at night is actually very different than during the day.  Many of the animals are much more active at dusk-- we saw kangaroos hopping around, the Hyenas (which we thought was an empty pen!) were up and right up close to the fence.  The monkey's were noisy and chasing each other around from branch to branch.  We heard the lion and lioness making lots of noises back and forth to one another.  We heard the laughing Kookaburra laugh and found the sloths were awake and moving s-l-o-w-l-y. Alec had picked up a scavenger hunt paper when we entered the zoo and actually got stumped on one question so we asked a zoo keeper and learned about the Colobus Monkey.  There were no shows, no rides, and no gift shops open to worry about!  They did have a free craft project where you could make a paper plate peacock but none of the boys wanted to take time out from the zoo.  They all got a free ice cream on the way out of the zoo and were a bit bummed not to have had a bit more time to see EVERYTHING... but we did see most of the zoo.  There were a few animals, like the cheetah's that we really wanted to see, that were not out but for the most part we were able to see so much.  We had a lovely picnic near the deer and got to watch a live turkey walking around while we were eating.  For once, I didn't take many photos, but lived in the moment enjoying the kids and watching the excitement on their friends' faces.   Here are the few photos I did take. 
The Aldabra Tortoise was in his pool of water with his head out and facing us!  We've never seen that! 


Checking out the Flamingos-- Evan found a Flamingo feather! 


The hyenas-- We had no idea that their heads were so large!

Enjoying ice cream with friends! 

This tree looked like it had green beans hanging from it (though we realized it's probably just the leaves) 

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