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Party for the Planet – Saturday, May 4th, 2024


Join us for our annual PARTY FOR THE PLANET! This event is a way for us to celebrate this amazing planet we all call home.

Every year we partner with the¬†Wisconsin DNR, and the Dane County Regional Arborists Group to celebrate the planet! Our goal is to inspire everyone to learn more about sustainability and resource conservation. This year we’ll also be hosting a Planting Party for our new sensory garden! This new garden will feature native plants that provide homes for Wisconsin songbirds and pollinators. Once completed, this garden will also incorporate flower beds that invite guests to experience plants with all of their senses. Guests will be able to listen to plants, smell them, see them, touch them, and even taste them!


  • ALL DAY Self-Guided Scavenger HuntStart at the main entrance (the gate near the Randall Ave. and Drake St. intersection) and find all the animals who want to teach you some wet & wild facts!
  • ALL DAY Spring EnrichmentWe will be giving spring enrichment to our animals all day. Make sure you explore the Zoo to see our animals interacting with various spring-themed enrichment!
  • WHILE SUPPLIES LAST Tree Sapling GiveawayWe will be giving away a selection of native tree and shrub saplings for you to take home and plant.
  • 10am – 2pm Bat Stuffy AdoptionCome check out our “Bat Cave” in the Main Tent at the center of the Zoo and bring home a new friend! All proceeds go to Bat Conservation International. Bat stuffed animals are upcycled by volunteers using old HVZ event t-shirts. Each stuffed animal costs $20.
  • 10am – 2pm Tree ClimbingJoin Dane County arborists and see how high you can climb! Staging area will be between our North American porcupine exhibit and the Main Tent in the center of the Zoo. Wheelchair harnesses will be available.
  • 10am – 2pm Planting PartyJoin our Horticulturist and Garden Volunteers to help us create our new sensory garden! Find us just up the hill from the Aviary across from our old penguin exhibit. This activity is best suited for children 10 and up. We ask all children under 14 be accompanied by a responsible adult.

One of our most popular Party for the Planet events is tree climbing, put on with generous support from Dane County arborists. Geared for kids, this is a great opportunity to get up in to the trees and see the Zoo from a whole new perspective! Please anticipate wait times for this event.

Wheelchair harnesses will be available for our tree climbing event! All participants will be required to fill out a waiver prior to climbing.