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PostHeaderIcon Oakland Zoo: Not Just for Kids

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I've been going to the Oakland Zoo since the early 1970's and I've taken my niece and nephew on trips to see the animals and for special events, such as Zoo Lights in December. Their parents are zoo members. The 7-year-old girl and 10-year-old boy know the lay of the land from the flamingos to the elephants. The Oakland Zoo is, no doubt, a gem for children and families, by day.

But the Zoo is, pardon me, a whole different animal at night.

My sister and I found this out on Saturday night during Walk in the Wild, which brought together nearly 100 vendors from around the Bay Area. Bakeries, breweries, caterers, restaurants, and wineries gathered to support the Oakland Zoo's largest annual fundraiser.

We sampled food from some East Bay favorites: Pican, Italian Colors, Wood Tavern, Scott's Seafood, Ozumo, Triple Rock, Forge Pizza, Nothing Bundt Cakes, World Ground Cafe, Concannon Vineyards, St. George Spirits and plenty more.

We had mini pastrami sandwiches, Aidells sausages with crazy good dipping sauces, bite-sized shrimp covered in more deliciousness, thin sliced pizza, orzo salad, cheese, cheese and more cheese, fresh baked bread, mini tacos, and lots of different juices, brews and vinos to wash down all the good eats.

We ate and drank while strolling around looking at the sun bears, primates, flamingos, giraffes, elephants, camels and birds. We also rode the skyride and got an aerial view of tigers resting, a lion sleep, tule elk roaming and bison doing whatever it is they do.

We listened to some live music while folks tried the specialty cocktails, danced and ate dessert. This event happens once a year in June and tickets go quickly. Make sure you Walk in the Wild next year. But in the meantime, there are plenty of other events for adults (and kids) alike.
Bedtime with the Beasts is a time to get a group together for an overnight at the zoo. Start your evening with a private guided tour of the zoo. Afterwards, enjoy a light snack and participate in a fun hands-on activity. Next, meet one of the education animals up close and then head down to the auditorium and settle in for the night. In the morning, enjoy a tasty continental breakfast, pack up your things, and journey back into the zoo to see the animals as they wake. The event runs from 7 p.m. to 10 a.m. the next day.

Program Fee: $65 and memberships do not apply toward program fees. 
Parking Fee: $7 for non-members. Free for members.

Pre-Registration is required. All forms and deposit must be received 1 month before the event date. For more information and to register, email, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  or call, 510-632-9525 ext. 220.

Groups can be as small as 15 or as large as 100, but you must be at least 6 to participate.

Prefer sleeping in your own bed? Check out a docent-led live animal presentation where you will learn what you can do to help wild animals, while seeing some of the zoo's animals close up. Programs begin at 11:30 a.m. and 12:15 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays and run about 20 minutes. The program is free with zoo admission and presented at the Clorox Wildlife Theater in the Wayne and Gladys Valley Children's Zoo. Registration is not required. For more information on these and other programs, go to oaklandzoo.org.-- KB


Last Updated (Thursday, 27 June 2013 21:19)


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