Spend the spooky season at the Philadelphia Zoo


It seems just a few weeks ago the summer was in full swing, but now just as quickly as the sunny season came and went, fall is here and so is the spooky season. Philadelphia comes alive around this time of year especially, and many organizations have festivals, specials and events to celebrate. However, with COVID-19 still on the horizon and having to put health first, many institutions have had to either postpone or alter their plans, luckily some of the city’s favorite events can still go on safely, including Boo at the Zoo. 

Boo at the Zoo is back next month at the Philadelphia Zoo beginning the weekend of October 16-18 and will continue on the following weekends on Oct. 23-25 and Oct. 30th-Nov. 1st. 

“Boo at the Zoo is such a great event for the entire family,” said Amy Shearer, Philadelphia Zoo’s Chief Marketing Officer in a statement. “It is such an exciting time to visit the Zoo, see your favorite animals and take a not-so spooky safari. Boo at the Zoo will look a little different from year’s past, instead of a trick or treat around the Zoo, to minimize touchpoints we will offer pre-filled candy bags donated by Mars for guests to grab on their way out. This is one of our favorite events of the year – we look forward to seeing all the adorable, whimsical and creative costumes again this year.”


Boo at the Zoo will feature everything the festive event has featured in previous years with the added safety precautions to help ensure that everyone has a fun, but also safe time enjoying this time of the year at the country’s first zoo. 

Philadelphians who head to the popular cultural institution are encouraged to sport their best costumes when heading to Boo at the Zoo. As mentioned in Shearer’s statement, there will also be trick or treating as there is every year, it’ll just look slightly different. Instead of trick or treating around the Zoo, there will be treat bags given away courtesy of Mars, plus, the annual not-so-scary extinction graveyard will be showcasing extinct animals and animals the Zoo is trying to save from extinction. Candy isn’t going to be the only edible treat available at the Zoo either, some fall-themed food specials will also include hot apple cider, sweets and treats and more. 

Those who head to the seasonal event are also in for some brand new treats. According to the release, new for this year is the option to post your families favorite photo on Instagram and tag @philadelphiazoo and hashtag #booatthezoophilly for a chance to win great prizes – and have your photo shared on the Philadelphia Zoo Instagram. One or more photos will be shared each day during Boo at the Zoo for an online, virtual costume “parade” via Instagram Stories. The first-place prize will be a Family Membership valued at $135 with benefits for all members including admission for two named adults and two children under the age of 18. Second prize will be four complimentary Zoo tickets (made via an online reservation code) and third place will be a family four-pack of COVID 19 Zoo-themed animal masks. 


The Zoo is also a great spot to head to in the city for some fall foliage as well, and Philadelphians also get the added treat of seeing some of the most unique Zoo activities and amenities in the USA. It’s the oldest Zoo in the country, houses nearly 1,300 rare and endangered animals, is home to the world’s first animal travel and exploration trail system Zoo360 and is globally known as one of the most renowned zoological societies—just to name a few accolades. 

During this time, guests should also keep a few safety precautions in mind before taking their trip including reserving your time when purchasing tickets, social distancing and mask-wearing for guests over the age of 2. Indoor animal exhibits and attractions will also be remaining closed and the Zoo has also implemented touchless toilets, faucets, paper towel and soap dispensers as well as sanitizing stations throughout there will be  campus. “Clean Team”- staffers are also going to be dedicated to sanitizing and cleaning high touch areas and new procedures that allow public safety officers to check bags without touching. Please note that while costumes are welcome for children, COVID 19 masks must be worn on all children and adults age 2+ and older, and Halloween costumes with toy guns and weapons are prohibited. 


According to the release, timed reservations will go on sale on October 1, 2020. Boo at the Zoo is included with the price of admission. Zoo admission is $24 for adults (ages 12 and up), $19 for children (2 to 11), and free for children under two. For more information on, as or to purchase and print tickets online, visit us at PhiladelphiaZoo.org. Facebook: PhiladelphiaZoo; Instagram: @philadelphiazoo; Twitter: @phillyzoo.    

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