The Saint Louis Zoo has set a new attendance record for 2012 with 3.5 million visitors. This exceeds 2011 attendance of 3.0 million and the Zoo’s earlier record 3.1 set in 2009.
The Zoo cited the new Sea Lion Sound exhibit and the popular U.S. Bank Wild Lights as having contributed to the success in 2012.
The Saint Louis Zoo’s new Sea Lion Sound opened June 30. Designed by PGAV Destinations, the $18 million exhibit is inspired but the Pacific Northwest and features a 35-foot-long walk-through tunnel into the sea lion habitat – a first in North America.
The U.S. Bank Wild Lights had a total gate attendance of 62, 310 by Dec. 23 which was highest recorded since Wild Lights began in the late 1990s.
Jeffrey P. Bonner, Ph.D., Dana Brown President & CEO of the Saint Louis Zoo, said, “We thank all the many people who came to the Zoo in 2012. We had a terrific year because the greater our attendance, the more people we reach and the greater opportunity we have to engage everyone in conserving animals and their habitats. We are grateful that, with both public and private support, we can continue to be America’s number one zoo for years to come."
Photo by Ray Meibaum/Saint Louis Zoo