The Advertisers Club Introduces
SOUTHWICK ZOO & EARTH LTD.
By Michelle Sanford Staff Reporter/Columnist · August 05, 2011
Two year old Molly is part of Southwick Zoo's [back]
new giraffe exhibit.
Southwick Zoo's motto states that it's "more than just a zoo." And by all accounts, that statement couldn't be truer. In addition to providing an extensive collection of animals such as tigers, lions, zebras, chimpanzees, and countless others, Southwick's is dedicated to educating the community on important issues concerning the wildlife that is found there.
Through its nonprofit organization Earth (Environmental Awareness of Resources and Threatened Habits) Ltd., many staff members at Southwick's are working hard to educate children and adults about issues concerning animal ecology, endangered species, and threatened habitats. Part of that education includes giving live presentations with animals at the Zoo's Earth Discovery Center, as well as through its traveling Zoomobile.
"One of our main goals is to educate people on animal ecology, conservation, and the environment," said one of Southwick's directors and Earth Ltd. Founder Betsey Brewer, whose grandfather, Justin Southwick, was the founder of Southwick's Wild Animal Farm, which eventually became Southwick's Zoo.
Another exciting part of Earth Ltd. is its week-long summer programs offered to children who learn about animal behaviors, animal ecology, or eco-systems right on the Zoo's grounds. A zoo excursion program for teens takes participants to Tufts Veterinary School, on a whale watch, and more. Member benefits of joining Earth Ltd. include unlimited visits to Southwick's Zoo for one year, discounts on the youth summer programs and at the gift shop, and access to after hour programs.
Approximately 250,000 people visit Southwick's Zoo each year, and according to Brewer, many continue to be surprised at how much it offers and how it continually expands.
One of the more exciting new additions to the Zoo is the million dollar giraffe exhibit which currently houses three giraffes, with an additional two more coming. The Zoo is also taking part in a new rhino conservation project and will soon provide housing to two new endangered rhinos.
The fun and education at Southwick's doesn't end come Labor Day. In fact, the Zoo typically stays open until the third week of October. Southwick's Zoo is located off Route 16 at 2 Southwick St. in Mendon. Hours of operation are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week. Rates are $19.50 per adult, $13.50 for children aged three to 12, and $13.50 for seniors. Visit www.southwickszoo.com for a coupon for $2 off each admission as well as additional information, or call 800-258-9182.