Whether you are one of our regular visitors or you’re making your first trip to Como in many years, we thank you for making Como Park Zoo & Conservatory the most visited cultural attraction in Minnesota.
With free admission and a 365-day open-door policy, Como invites every visitor to take a deep breath and dive into nature. Como’s early founders believed that creating a community treasure in the heart of the Twin Cities would contribute immensely to our quality of life, and a century later, that original investment has only grown in value.
In the year ahead, your contributions to Como Friends will support the following high priority projects and improvements:
A NEW OUTDOOR TRAINING AREA IN GORILLA FOREST: Bringing behind-the-scenes animal care and training activities front-and-center for Como’s two million annual visitors has been an ongoing priority for Como Friends. The outdoor training area in Gorilla Forest will allow Como Zoo’s summer visitors to get closer to our western lowland gorillas during public training sessions, while creating a new enrichment area for Como’s gorilla troop.
UPGRADES TO THE CONSERVATORY CLIMATE SYSTEM: One of the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory’s most critical assets is one that visitors never see—Como’s 30,000 square-foot growing house. With nearly every flower, plant and vine in Como’s public collections grown from seed in the greenhouse, maintaining and upgrading the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory’s temperature, humidity and light control system is critical. The upgrade will ensure the health and beauty of Como’s horticultural collections for years to come.
CONSERVATION CHAMPIONS: Keepers, horticulturists, education specialists and other Como staff members are leading conservation-action projects here on campus and with partner organizations. This year projects include Species Survival Plan work with Orangutans in Malaysia, and Seal and Sea Lion rehabilitation on the Pacific coast.
A NEW SEALS AND SEA LIONS HABITAT: Como Harbor, the new home for Sparky the Sea Lion and friends will provide a year-round saltwater habitat and a new amphitheater with shaded viewing for visitors. Sparky’s inspiring new home will help connect Como’s two million annual visitors to Como Zoo’s seals and sea lions and continue the re-imagining of the zoo that began with Polar Bear Odyssey and Gorilla Forest.