Opening day at Philadelphia Zoo's new KidZooU

April 13, 2013 8:32:18 PM PDT
Saturday was opening day at KidZooU, the new children's zoo and educational center at the Philadelphia Zoo.

Bright sunny skies made it the perfect day for crowds to check out monkeys and goats converging on their play structures.

Sheep allowed themselves to be petted and groomed by hundreds of excited little hands

"It's exciting, they love it. They've been running around petting them, trying to feed them and enjoying it. It's great," said Pete Downey.

"It's a very nice experience for the kids to have fun and learn about animals. It's a good hands-on experience," said Keke Johnson.

While the barnyard area is similar to the old children's zoo, the indoor education center is a new concept.

"Our Faris Family Education Center is filled with interactives and animals. It's a great place for kids to get in, experience things and do lots of hands on teaching to learn about what they can do to help wildlife," said Kim Langel, Vice President of Conservation and Education.

Inside there are beautiful butterflies and colorful kinds of birds.

There are also some wildlife that you wouldn't expect like cockroaches and rats.

All the exhibits at KidZooU are accessible and all aim to teach the same lesson.

We want the kids to realize how close they are, that the animals are not that different from us," said Langel.

If you missed opening day, KidZooU is open during regular zoo hours and admission is included in the regular ticket price.