How a Smalltown Zoo Made a Big City Impact

February 18, 2019 Kristy Hundt

How a Smalltown Zoo Made a Big City Impact

With the holidays behind us, how many of us would prefer to not look at our spending and eating habits during that time? Yet without analyzing these, how can we improve how we approach the next holiday season? Now, if you’re a venue that hosted a holiday activation, you are probably much more excited to see the results of your efforts. This is the case with our newest branded experience client, Elmwood Park Zoo.

Elmwood Park Zoo is a historic, hidden gem nestled in Norristown, PA. With a population of 34,000 residents, the venue was just begging to become the premier holiday hotspot for this tight-knit community. The zoo debuted their inaugural holiday zoo lights experience, Wild Lights, this past winter. The experience featured a dazzling tree-lined path as visitors strolled through Disco Ball Way, Candy Cane Lane, and finally, through Santa’s workshop. They also had a unique nighttime zip line course where adventurers wore LED-lined harnesses as they darted through the trees.

 

They also had a unique night time zip line course where adventurers wore LED-lined harnesses as they darted through the trees

Among the goals for Elmwood was to create a lasting tradition for the town. Honored guests including the mayor and Elmwood Park Zoo president spoke at the grand opening ceremony, creating publicity and buzz around the event. A Philadelphia Eagle player met with fans and signed autographs and even the zoo mascot got in on the fun. There were interactives built strategically into almost every space within the zoo, appealing to all ages.

With any event experience, key stakeholders expect to see results from their investment. For Elmwood Park Zoo and other venues like it, increasing attendance over the long winter months is key. As with most outdoor venues, including botanical gardens, the early evenings and cold weather don’t fare well for attendance. You can’t see flowers in the dark, and animals tend to retreat to their dens for sleep. Creating a nighttime event that invites visitors into an otherwise closed venue, is just, well…extra attendance.

Shaun Rogers, Marketing Director of Elmwood Park Zoo, states that 29,000 guests experienced their inaugural holiday event, Wild Lights, with over 400 guests electing to do the nighttime zip line course at Treetop Adventures as well. He feels they have established worthwhile holiday attraction to build and improve upon for years to come.

Curious to know how Elmwood Park Zoo pulled together Wild Lights? Get in touch with one of our client event specialists to learn more. 

 

About the Author

Kristy Hundt

Kristy Hundt is the Marketing Manager at GES Events. She is responsible for managing and helping create integrative marketing campaigns, which include content, digital advertising, and social media. In her free time, she wrangles two young kids and volunteers as a Destination Imagination coach and baseball coach.

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