July 12, 2024

San Antonio zoo releases plans to reopen during second phase

The San Antonio zoo had debuted an ultra successful drive-thru zoo never experienced before that lasts until May 21st. Now, the local non-profit zoo is switching gears like others zoos in the lonestar state which have been given the go ahead to open up to the public at limited capacity.

The zoo will allow 25 percent of it’s normal capacity inside their gates.

The local zoo will be opening up as early as May 29th according to the San Antonio Zoo’s President and CEO, Tim Morrow. That date is not official as of yet. The zoo has to work with the city of San Antonio to assure that they’re compliant with the safety standards.

Visitors will see social distancing rules in place, increased cleaning protocols and limited zoo attendance inside. A large variety of exhibits will be open but some of the indoor attractions such as the Hixon Bird House, Amphibia, the Friedrich Aquarium and Discovery House will be closed. Also any interactive exhibits, play areas and amusement attractions will be also closed.

“It is critical for us to start the reopening process,” Morrow said. “Unlike most zoos in the country, we depend 100 percent on ticket sales, donations and grants to operate. It costs nearly $500,000 a week to operate the zoo, and without visitors we have no income to cover this expense, leading to a shortfall of millions of dollars for our non-profit to operate.”

The zoo depends on visitors to keep operations going. When they temporarily closed their doors in March, they nearly lost of its income in one night. During the stay at home order, the zoo has been doing everything they can to keep afloat. They’ve been collecting donations and also raising money hosting their drive-thru zoo to keep families happy and safe during quarantine amid COVID-19 pandemic.