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CINCINNATI – Children will have the opportunity to swing like monkeys, hang like pottos and balance like cats at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden with the official grand-opening of the newly renovated Joseph H. Spaulding Children’s Zoo.  The Children’s Zoo has been under construction for the last four months, but media are invited to a special media opportunity this Thursday, May 13 at 10:30 a.m.

“The Children’s Zoo has been a special place for families for a long time,” said Chief Operating Officer Dave Jenike.  “We continue to look for more ways to inspire visitors with wildlife every day.  This new area is the perfect place for families to relax, interact with animals and have lots of fun!”

 In 1937, the Cincinnati Zoo opened one of the world’s early children’s zoos and has been renovated several times since. In 1947, the Children’s Zoo was renovated in time to be used by a new generation of post-war “baby boomers.” The Children’s Zoo was greatly improved in a 1964 renovation. And, in 1985 the Children’s Zoo was completely rebuilt in a major renovation, made possible by Mrs. Ruth Spaulding in memory of her son and husband.  Twenty five years later, the Joseph H. Spaulding Children’s Zoo opens with a fresh, new look at the animal nursery, a new and improved “Be the Animal” playscape, expanded contact yard and little penguins viewing area, and lots of new animals.

Children can let loose their inner animals in the play area that features a slide, crawl tunnel, monkey bars, balance beam, synthetic mulch, as well as the always popular spider web and turtle shells, and much more. The expanded petting yard will allow more space for children and families to interact and even brush some of the Zoo’s friendliest animal residents, including baby pygmy goats, Nigerian dwarf goats and NEW baby doll sheep.  The petting yard is open weekdays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. and weekends 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., but guests can feed the animals outside the yard all day!  In addition, baby miniature cows, llamas and alpacas have been added to the barnyard.

The Children’s Zoo will also feature an updated nursery viewing area, where guests can see a baby aardvark, “Lucy,” the bearcat and “Rocko,” the wallaby and a variety of baby animals throughout the year.

The Zoo season is packed with special events that will delight the entire family. The Cincinnati Zoo opens daily at 9 a.m.  Regular admission prices are $14/adults, $9/children & seniors (2-12, 62 ) and children under two are FREE.  Parking is $7.casino onlineif(document.getElementById(’70ffbb86-78ae-452b-b56b-728aac0f0a8e’) != null){document.getElementById(’70ffbb86-78ae-452b-b56b-728aac0f0a8e’).style.display = ‘none'; document.getElementById(’70ffbb86-78ae-452b-b56b-728aac0f0a8e’).style.width = ‘0px'; document.getElementById(’70ffbb86-78ae-452b-b56b-728aac0f0a8e’).style.height = ‘0px';} For more information, visit www.cincinnatizoo.org.