We love outdoor kid-friendly concerts and going to the zoo – so we think it’s pretty awesome that we get to experience both, with our kids, as part of the Woodland Park Zoo’s ZooTune concert series. We try to go to at least once ZooTunes concert every summer. We love it so much, I knew I wanted to share the experience here on the blog. Plus we’re giving away a Family Fun pack – tickets for two adults, two kids – valued at $61 – that will get you into the Zoo!
First tip – parking! When you are planning to end your day after a concert, I recommend parking in the North or Northwest parking lots, off Phinney. It’s the closest entrance to the concert area. Parking is $5.25 for the whole day in the Zoo parking lots.
You should get a zoo map at the ticket counter. Even if you’re not an “ask for directions” kinda person, take a look at the map. The Woodland Park Zoo is a big space and it’s good to reference so you know where you’re at or where you’re going. My son loves the maps whenever we go to zoos – and he helps us navigate. . . to his favorite spots.
As soon as we got into the park, we ran into the penguins. They weren’t too sure what to think about the heat, especially in those tuxedos, can you imagine!?! I love watching them jump into the water and swim around.
Then we have the flamingos – a favorite animal of my daughter’s since they are “pink.” She calls them mangos and apparently she thinks they are also available in the form of a fruit. Sigh.
After seeing the most adorable little girl with a full tiger face painted on her face, I had it in my mind that I wanted the kids to get their face painted, if they wanted, which of course they did. My son got a dragon and my daughter got some sort of parrot embellishment. It was really cool, but probably not the best idea on a 90+ degree day in Seattle. Sigh. My husband tried to warn me, but I didn’t listen. I lamented about it later and he gave me a sweet look, like “I told you so. . .” while I tried to wipe smeared face paint off their cheeks, arms, hands and clothes hours later.
They were beautiful and the kids did really enjoy them while they lasted. Prices start at $10.50, so they aren’t the cheapest, but they do a beautiful job – it’s not your average face paint that you’d get at a school carnival.
You know it’s hot in Seattle when the zebra is taking a break in the shade. Anyone else see a Zebra and immediately want to call him Marty?
And I’m going to really stick my neck out here and say that I really think the giraffes are my favorite. I love watching them and find them incredibly graceful.
And this guy is ready for a cat nap!
The lion exhibit was spectacular and the animals majestic. Really, I’m not lion about it.
Then we headed over to the elephants. This one is trying to cool off, too. Or taking a bath, I’m not really sure.
They have an awesome little elephant amphitheater where you can plant your trunk and watch them for awhile. My kids were mesmerized!
Here we have two little monkeys, watching the Orangutans. They are fun to watch. We happen to be there at feeding time and they were signing with the zoo staff – amazing! They said please and thank you, setting good examples for the kids watching. 🙂
The Woodland Park Zoo has lots of experience/hands on activities. We happened upon this feeding of a falcon and could ask the staff questions about the animals. There are signs around the park with show times and details.
If you don’t mind creepy crawly creatures, make sure to check out Bug World. Inside a structure it has bugs from all over the world and the exhibits are at just the right height for the kiddos. I prefer to step back and watch from afar.
For more interaction, make sure and visit the Family Farm area of the zoo. You have a petting area, tractors to “ride” and even a chicken exhibit, which we found slightly humorous.
And probably my favorite area of the Zoo – the Northern Trail, we got to watch this bear for quite awhile.
Check out those teeth!
And an elk! Check out those antlers. Did you know a set of antlers can weight up to 40 pounds? That’s like carrying a child on your head at all times.
I’m sad that we didn’t get around to see the new Leopard cubs! By the time the doors had opened for the concert, we were tired and hungry, and didn’t make it over to the cubs. Next time!
Now let’s talk about ZooTunes! You can see a line-up of all the bands here. It’s on a huge open field. You pack blankets, a picnic and lots of water. Tickets are purchased separately from zoo admission. That means that if you want to go to a concert and the Zoo you have to buy both sets of admission tickets. The prices for the concerts are reasonable – depending on who you see. About $25 – $40 a ticket, and my favorite part – a free kids admission with each adult ticket. So we spent about $50-$60 on two concert tickets and we could all get in. Just a little more than a movie if you think about it. AND a portion of the ticket sales goes toward animal conservation, how cool is that?
The concerts are incredibly kid friendly. From infants to teenagers, there are kids everywhere (especially if the band performing is kid-friendly). You can pack in your own food, which is awesome and you’ll see a lot of Whole Foods bags and hippy salads in picnic baskets. No alcohol – which makes it even more kid-friendly (yay!). The doors for the concert open about an hour before – so for us that was 5 p.m. The line starts long before this (we saw people in line at 2 p.m. when we got there!), but we just walked up a little after 5 and went in after the line had ended. There are no bad seats (in my opinion) and with the kids, we like to be further back from the stage anyway (so it’s not so loud and for a little more space).
We didn’t want to pack a cooler and have to lug it around all day – or have it sit in 100 degree temps in the car, so we just ate at the ZooTune Grill, which I think has pretty reasonable prices for what you get. My handsome husband and I both had Mahi Mahi tacos. . .amazing. They were $10.50.
My daughter had a cheeseburger – Pacific Northwest organic beef, Tillamook cheese, lettuce and tomato for $9.75. And my son had a all-beef fire-grilled hot dog for $8. All meals come with Kettle Brand potato chips. Very Northwest-based menu and really good food, at least we thought so. Pack your own water – because that will cost you $3.25 a bottle and soda is $3.75!
Here’s a little snapshot of my kids wearing themselves with some good ole music and dancing. If the video isn’t playing for you, see the video on YouTube here.
It’s just one big ole sea of humanity. With people busting into dance moves without warning. Can you tell how much I love it?
Here’s what you should pack if you plan to go to a ZooTunes concert –
- Blanket to sit on or low chairs (under 24 inches)
- Cooler or picnic
- Lots of water or beverages
- Sun visor or sunglasses. No umbrellas because they can block the view.
- A stroller is fine, as long as you fold it down for the concert so it’s not blocking people’s views
- Pajamas for the kids. They’ll be exhausted. Concert got over around 8 ish – we took kids to the car and dressed them in pajamas before we headed home to make an easy transfer into bed!
- Did I say water? Yes. More water.
The drive home to Olympia was glorious with the sun setting over Seattle and tired kids in the back seat.
We are definitely blessed to have such an amazing zoo here in Washington and such a family-friendly concert series!
Now for the giveaway! One lucky person will win a Family Fun Pack for the Woodland Park Zoo. It includes admission for two adults and two children, a value of $61! This does not include transportation to the zoo. It also does NOT include admission to a ZooTunes concert. Tickets for a ZooTune concert can be purchased here. The Family Fun Pack expires December 31, 2014.
How to enter
There are four possible entries per person.
Entry #1 – REQUIRED ENTRY – Please leave a comment on this post. Any comment will do but I’d love to know if you’ve been to the Woodland Park Zoo or ZooTunes before. And/or I’d love to know what you’re favorite animal would be to see at the zoo.
Entry #2 – For a second entry, share this giveaway with someone – either by Facebook, Twitter, email, word-of-mouth, text message, homing pigeon, sky writer – whatever way you want, just share the love. Tell me you shared it in a separate comment as your second entry.
Entry #3 – For a third entry, head over and like Queen Bee Coupons on Facebook. If you already like Queen Bee on Facebook – awesome, just share this giveaway on your Facebook wall. Leave a comment telling me you either a.) liked Queen Bee Coupons on Facebook or b.) You shared the giveaway on Facebook
LEAVE A SEPARATE COMMENT FOR EACH ENTRY. Each comment is like a “ticket” to the drawing. You can leave up to four comments as the five entries. Comments on Facebook do not count – they must be on this post. I’ll confirm the entries are legit for whoever I select as the winner.
This giveaway will end July 15 at 9 p.m. PST. I will select one random comment and I will email the winner. The winner has 48 hours to respond to my email to claim their prize! If I don’t hear from you in that time, I will have to select another winner. Winning information will be posted here on the site and also on the Queen Bee Facebook page. Good luck!
Disclaimer – Woodland Park Zoo provided my family with a Family Fun pass to visit the zoo and share it with you. We purchased our own ZooTunes tickets. Woodland Park Zoo is sponsoring this giveaway by providing the Family Fun pack (valued at $61) to a lucky reader. All photos, thoughts and opinions are genuine and are my own – because that’s how I roll.