Philadelphia Zoo's 'Creatures of Habitat' exhibit

A gazillion-piece animal adventure!
April 8, 2010

Now Extended Through November 28th

The Philadelphia Zoo invites visitors to enter an extraordinary world of life-size LEGO brick animals with the debut of Creatures of Habitat: A Gazillion-Piece Animal Adventure. This extraordinary experience is the first and only conservation exhibition of its kind at any zoo or aquarium. The expansive project, running through November 28, features a series of 10 free-standing habitats, each telling the story of endangered or threatened species around the world through the sculptures of renowned LEGO certified professional, Sean Kenney.

Through the use of amazing LEGO brick sculptures, set designs created to tell each story and informative interactions with Zoo staff, Creatures of Habitat highlights the Philadelphia Zoo's global role in protecting wildlife. Kenney, one of only six LEGO certified professional artisans in the world, crafted more than 30 life-size animal sculptures from hundreds of thousands of tiny LEGO bricks. Fragile in the wild, some on the brink of extinction, the species represented in these sculptures range from Borneo to Brazil and the Arctic Circle to Africa, and in size from a 500-pound polar bear to the delicate golden lion tamarin, which usually weighs less than one pound. A truly international collaboration, the intricate Creatures of Habitat set designs are the work of the Zoo's creative team with illustrations provide by Jo Tronc, the famed New Zealand illustrator.

"Creatures of Habitat extends and expands upon our important conservation work that has gained focus and impact through our 150th anniversary celebration." says Vikram H. Dewan, President and CEO of the Philadelphia Zoo. "Every child - and adult for that matter - can relate to the universal desire to protect our planet, this place we all call home. A key principle of this exhibit is to show how our world fits together and we all connect with it. Our goal remains simple: ensure we never see the day when a child's only connection to these species is through history books."

Interactive elements are also a key part of the exhibition - visitors can experience Creatures of Habitat in person exclusively at the Philadelphia Zoo, while visitors from around the world can virtually attend and engage in the Zoo's global conservation mission by logging onto and completing a Personal Sustainability Plan. Each Personal Sustainability Plan guides visitors in their quest to be a steward of wildlife through helpful information, tips and interactive games. Every visitor will learn not only what is happening to these creatures in the wild, but also about the Philadelphia Zoo's role in protecting and preserving animals and their habitats around the world. Maybe most importantly, guests will gain a solid understanding of action steps they can take in order to be part of the solution and participate in wildlife preservation and saving animals from extinction.

In addition, signature weekend events throughout the season will highlight special storylines and celebrate action and stewardship. One such series titled Creatures of Culture, will focus on four regions around the globe by spotlighting the animals and cultures of these areas. Local customs, cuisine, crafts and wildlife-related activities will be part of the weekend festivities.

(reprinted by permission from the Philadelphia Zoo)

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