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December 20,2009 (Escondido) – Want to create a gift for a lion, elephant, vulture or meerkat? The San Diego Zoo’s Wild Animal Park is hosting enrichment days for guests to view animals playing with hand-painted boxes, popcorn-stuffed bags, insect-filled tubes and more. You can even create your own meerkat maze, paint a lion toy, or prepare a taco for an elephant with hay and food pellets.

The San Diego Zoo’s Wild Animal Park will stay open until 7 p.m. during Wild Holidays December 20 and 26-31. In addition, enrichment activities will continue on January 1 and 2, when the park will be open until 6 p.m. Among the activities planned is a black light puppet show in the Benbough Amphitheater at 5:30 and 6:30 each night.

On Friday, the meerkat enclosure was a frenzy of excitement as pint-sized entertainers discovered bags full of treats hand-painted by Wild Animal Park visitors. One dived into a bag with “I HEART meerkats” written on the front. Other meerkats pounced on holiday decorated bags filled with popcorn, sunflower seeds and pomegranate seeds.

This is the first year that regularly scheduled enrichment hours are offered for guests to view animals savoring gifts made by guests. Cost to create gifts for the animals is free with paid admission. 2008 was the last year of the Park’s Festival of Lights.

For more information, see http://www.wildanimalpark.org/.


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