America’s Teaching Zoo welcomes kids for Halloween fun


Families attend Boo at the Zoo on Oct. 30 at America’s Teaching Zoo. Photo credit: John Louie Menorca

John Louie Menorca and Alondra Rojas

By Alondra Rojas

To raise funds for America’s Teaching Zoo while also exposing children and families to its facilities, the zoo staff hosted Boo at the Zoo on Oct. 30.

Boo at the Zoo, which featured a costume contest and trick-or-treating, was a great way to be introduced to America’s Teaching Zoo, according to attendee Rebecca Pantaleon.

“You’d never suspect there would be a zoo here, but the decorations for the event and animals makes it all so beautiful,” said Pantaleon.

Boo at the Zoo is the annual Halloween event held at America’s Teaching Zoo. This year it featured scavenger hunts for the kids to collect goodies, face painting stations, baked goods for sale, the opportunity to see and touch some of the animals, and a costume contest/parade for the kids in their festive costumes. The event is part of the zoo’s ongoing effort to raise funds to improve their facilities.

Pantaleon and her husband Edgar brought their kids Bella Gonzalez, 8, and Elise Pantaleon, 3, to join in on the excitement and show off their costumes.

“Definitely seeing the kids’ faces all happy and full of laughter from getting candy is so much fun to see,” Pantaleon said. “Having the kids interact with the animals too is a definite bonus because who doesn’t love seeing animals?”

Timothy Camarato, a 27-year-old part of the EATM program and treasurer for Student Council, was working the event, helping to wrangle the costumed kids during the parade.

“My experience has been amazing,” Camarato said. “Working with the kids is great and to see their faces light up when seeing the animals is amazing as it helps bring awareness for the animals. It’s very rewarding.”