Fort Worth Zoo will celebrate 30-year landmark with daylong festival Saturday

Gracie and baby (Photo courtesy Fort Worth Zoo)

The Fort Worth Zoo will celebrate the 30th anniversary of its “New Zoo in ‘92” with a public festival on Saturday.

The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will feature live music and entertainment throughout the grounds, giveaways and special animal-themed activities and photo opportunities. Admission is half-price all day.

The event celebrates the 30th anniversary of the grand reopening of the zoo with vast improvements across the park, including naturalistic habitats for the animals. The reopening was the beginning of three decades of achievements and milestones at the zoo, which has become nationally acclaimed and a chart-topper on ranked lists of American zoos.

Since the re-opening under new leadership in 1992, the Fort Worth Zoo has welcomed more than 30 million visitors and raised more than $300 million for ongoing improvements and support of conservation initiatives, education and animal care.

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In addition to the party, the zoo is debuting an online three-part documentary series examining the zoo’s transformation from a declining municipal operation to a world-class institution, setting industry standards for conservation, animal care and education.

Festival-goers will have a chance to meet the newest arrival at the zoo, a western lowland gorilla born at the zoo on Nov. 6. The baby, son of Gracie and Elmo, is the second western lowland gorilla born at the zoo.

Western lowland gorillas are regarded as critically endangered by the Union for Conservation of Nature due to disease and hunting. Contributing to their endangerment, gorillas have an especially low reproductive rate, which would continue to threaten their survival even if disease and hunting were dramatically curtailed.

The baby can be seen indoors and outdoors at various times of the day in the zoo’s World of Primates habitat.