Minnesota Zoo sets record attendance numbers

A record number of people visited the zoo in the past year.  What's attracting them?

The fiscal year ended June 30 and a record setting number of 1.35 million people visited the Minnesota Zoo this year, according to the Star Tribune.

A specific goal set by director and CEO, Lee Ehmke, was bringing in people to the zoo and get them excited about the zoo. 

With the record number of people, I would say that the goal was set.

The high attendance was partly due to the exhibit "Russia's Grizzly Coast" which features brown bears, leopards, sea otters, and boars.  The exhibit includes a renovated plaza which makes it unique, said Ehmke.   It is something that you can't experience anywhere else, he said.  Also, various families look for reasonable entertainment close to home.

Not only did the attendance increase by 16 percent but the membership increased by 21 percent.

The zoo has been recognized nationally because of its efforts to increase attendance.  The African summer exhibit featuring giraffes, zebras, ostriches, and others has contributed to the success. 

Other attractions are coming to the zoo.  A playground called, "Woodland Adventure" and the renovations of the Tropics Trail.