Valuable education facility

Oppen Foundation helps provide zoo programs

Submitted Photo Nicole Goshen, Minot Roosevelt Park Zoo’s educator, works with young children during a class for tots at the zoo. A grant from the Oppen Foundation helps the zoo provide yearround education opportunities for people of all ages and abilities.

Through the generosity of the Oppen Foundation, for the second year Roosevelt Park Zoo is able to provide yearround education opportunities for all ages and all abilities.

In the first year of the Oppen Foundation grant, the zoo welcomed Nicole Goshen, zoo educator. In 2017, she focused on Early Childhood Education with the Zoo Tots program and Zoo Camp. Goshen also added Adult Ed-ventures geared toward adults and seniors.

This year, Goshen will be building upon the success of last year’s programs and enhancing the zoo’s education programs for teens, including revamping the Zoo Teen volunteer program and adding Junior Zookeeper and Zoo Explorers programs.

“Our intention is to educate and promote wildlife understanding as well as help youth develop leadership skills and gain career knowledge in the fun environment of the zoo,” zoo officials said in a news release.

The zoo’s education program reaches as many as 10,000 students at local schools through outreach programs, showing students the proper way to handle animals, discussing proper animal care, inspiring young scientists and giving early lessons on biology, ecology and conservation.

Education is one of the pillars of the mission at Roosevelt Park Zoo. Two years of support from the Oppen Foundation has made it possible to expand existing education programs at RPZ in an environment that will allow the education programs to grow to be self-sustaining.

Volunteer weekends at the zoo

Roosevelt Park Zoo in Minot will hold volunteer weekends for three weekends in April beginning April 7-9.

The schedule is as follows:

– Saturday, April 7, and Sunday, April 8

– Saturday, April 14, and Sunday, April 15.

– Saturday, April 21, and Sunday, April 22.

Hours each day are from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Some of the tasks for volunteers will include raking, shoveling, painting, sweeping, lifting/hauling, organizing or even building, the latter for those who are handy with construction.

Volunteers are welcome to come for an hour, the day or even all the dates. People should bring gloves and dress for success, keeping the weather and stated projects in mind. Upon arrival, each volunteer will need to sign in at the Visitors Center front desk, as well as sign out when they leave. Upon arrival, volunteers are asked to read a short safety message located in the Visitors Center atrium before entering the zoo grounds.

Zoo’s Easter Egg Hunt set for Saturday, March 31

Hop into spring at the Roosevelt Park Zoo.

The Minot Zoo Crew is hosting the annual Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, March 31, from 1-4 p.m. Admission for the event is $2 for members, $3 for non-members and free for ages 2 and under.

There will be four egg hunt levels available so children from toddler age to age 12 can enjoy the festivities. Each age group will have four different opportunities to hunt for Easter eggs. The Easter bunny will be at the event and will be happy to pose for photos. There will be other costumed characters to add to the fun. Limited concessions will be available including a near-summertime favorite: cotton candy.

After the Easter Egg Hunt fun, the eggs can then be exchanged for candy and prizes provided by Marketplace Foods, the zoo’s partner in this event for many years running.

Admission for the event allows zoo guests to also walk the zoo to see new zoo additions like Sisco and Priya, the Bactrian camels, and Akili the Okapi in his winter viewing space. Of course, the lions, tigers and bears can also be seen this time of year.