Cincinnati Zoo Kicks Off Tri-State’s Longest Running Holiday Tradition!

Posted December 8, 2010

CINCINNATI – Enjoy the Tri-state’s longest running family holiday tradition during the 28th Annual PNC Festival of Lights at the Cincinnati Zoo. See nearly two million LED lights, Madcap puppets in blacklight, an amazing Wild Lights Show, train rides, rappin’ elves and so much more. New this year, tap into adventure with the Happy Feet™ 4-D Experience playing at the Special FX 4-D Theater! PNC Festival of Lights opens November 26 and glows through January 2, 2011 from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. nightly.

“PNC is very pleased to continue our signature support of this unique Cincinnati holiday tradition,” said Kay Geiger, President, Greater Cincinnati/N. Kentucky- PNC Bank. “PNC enjoys bringing this kind of spirit and joy to the people of the tri-state area and invite all of our friends to visit the Cincinnati Zoo to take part in the PNC Festival of Lights.”

This year, guests will enjoy more lights and more color as they stroll through the Zoo’s five new themed areas. From Fairy Land where kids can search for the five hidden fairies to Candy Cane Forest, Twinkle Trail and so much more! Children can also visit Santa (through December 23) and his reindeer at the North Pole or they can sit and enjoy one of Mrs. Claus’ enchanting stories. The Rappin’ Elves and other costumed characters will stroll through the park for special meet and greets.

A breath-taking 35-foot-tall tree, blanketed with more than 20,000 LED lights will greet guests each night in the Zoo’s Historic Vine Street Village. Just beyond the entrance is Swan Lake, where you can experience the spectacular sights and sounds of the Wild Lights Show – a 21-foot-tall computer-controlled tree with thousands of LED lights dancing to the beat of popular holiday songs. Head on over to the Train Depot and see the sights aboard the North Polar Express or meet the Talking Tigers, “Blizzard” and “Snowflake”.

In the Wings of Wonder Theater, watch life size puppets come to life right before your eyes during live stage performances of Winter Wonders by Madcap Puppet Theatre. Each amazing black theater-style show features an array of holiday themes including snowmen, ice skating, and even dancing marshmallows! Enjoy three shows nightly at 6:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.

Warm up inside the Special FX Theater during the Happy Feet™ 4-D Experience. Join the amazing journey as Mumble realizes that his toe-tapping talent isn’t a burden, but a gift to be treasured – and that his dancing feet may ultimately save his endangered colony! Be sure to purchase tickets in advance, online. Shows will sell out early.

Visit the Zoo’s cold climate animal residents who are especially active and very much at home in the cooler temperatures. Lions, polar bears, red pandas, Japanese macaques, bald eagles, sea lion and reindeer thoroughly enjoy the winter weather. You can lose the scarves and mittens while visiting hundreds of other warm-weather animals inside more than a dozen heated indoor exhibits.

Satisfy your sweet tooth with scrumptious seasonal fare such as fresh-baked cookies, caramel apples, funnel cakes, homemade fudge, hot pretzels and roasted nuts. Or, warm up with Starbucks coffee, a glass of hot apple cider or hot chocolate. Cross items off of your holiday shopping list at one of the Zoo’s gift shops, including the Zoosters’ Treasure House and the Zoo Shop at the Historic Vine Street Village.

It doesn’t end there! Guests are invited to ring in the Zoo Year with a bunch of “party animals”. Kids of all ages are invited Happy Zoo Year, presented by Bob Evans, as the Zoo holds its very own New Year’s Eve bash on Thursday, December 31 from 5 – 9 p.m. Meet Father Time and Baby Zoo Year during a one-of-a-kind meet and greet. Enjoy an EARLY Zoo Year Countdown, complete with party favors and Rozzi’s fireworks.

Discounts are available! Visit any area United Dairy Farmers (UDF) and receive Half Priced Admission tickets good for Monday – Wednesday, through December 15th. Discount tickets are also available at any area Kroger, good for $2 off adult and $1 off child admission any day of the event.

Celebrate 28 years of family and tradition at the Cincinnati Zoo PNC Festival of Lights. The Zoo opens daily at 9 a.m. The PNC Festival of Lights is open 5 – 9 p.m. Nightly from November 26 – January 2, 2011. (closed Christmas Eve and Day). To purchase admission tickets or timed-tickets to the Happy Feet™ 4-D Experience, visit