Press Release: 05/19/2015

Oakland Zoo Presents Day to Celebrate Elephants

Nicky Mora, Senior Manager, Marketing/PR Colleen Kinzley, Director, Animal Care
(510) 632-9525 ext. 130 (510) 632-9525 ext. 141

Oakland, CA, May 23, 2015…Celebrating Elephants Day at Oakland Zoo is an annual event designed to spread awareness about elephants in captivity and in the wild. This daytime event is included with regular Zoo admission ($15.75 for adults, $11.75 for children/seniors, $8.00 for parking) and takes place from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Four African elephants named Donna, Lisa, M’Dunda, and Osh reside at Oakland Zoo, roaming on six and a half acres. A mock research camp is designed to offer guests the opportunity to don binoculars and become a field researcher for the day. Fascinating facts about these enormous animals will also be shared at education stations throughout the Zoo, including what wild elephants are facing in the wild with poaching and the illegal ivory trade. Engaging activities, behind-the-scenes tours, and live entertainment will create a fun atmosphere for all to become inspired by elephants.

Barn tours ($10 per adult and $5 per child) take visitors behind-the-scenes to see an elephant up-close and witness how zookeepers give them pedicures. Tickets can be purchased at Flamingo Plaza or the elephant exhibit. Circus Finelli, an animal free circus, performances will take place in the Clorox Wildlife Theater at 12:00pm and 2:00pm. The acts feature comedy, acrobatics, juggling, dance, and live music. Elephant education stations, such as, touching gigantic pachyderm bones, holding an eleven-pound tooth, and stepping into an elephant-sized footprint are also showcased throughout the Zoo. “Celebrating Elephants Day is a great way to have fun with your family while learning something new and helping African elephants,” said Colleen Kinzley, Director of Animal Care, Conservation, and Research. “Every year there are different activities as well as event favorites, like visiting the Elephant Barn. This year I hope everyone takes a few minutes to fill out an AB96 postcard to let our state legislatures know we want a full ban on the sale of ivory in California. Only elephants should wear ivory!”

For more information about Celebrating Elephants, please call 510-632-9525 or visit the zoo website at All proceeds from the elephant barn tours at Celebrating Elephants will be donated to the Amboseli Trust for Elephants, which helps ensure the long-term conservation and welfare of Africa’s elephants through scientific research, training, community outreach, public awareness and advocacy. World renowned Dr. Cynthia Moss started the now famous Amboseli Elephant Research Project in Kenya more than thirty years ago. For more details, please go to our website.

The 19th annual Celebrating Elephants event will be to raise awareness of “AB96-Ivory belongs on Elephants.” California is the second largest hub for ivory sales in the United States – and it’s supporting the slaughter of elephants thousands of miles away in Africa. Californians have an opportunity to lead during this critical time for elephants. By banning the sale of all elephant ivory and ivory products, California can raise consumer awareness, reduce poaching pressures on elephants, and set a critical example for other countries. Please, Californians, ask your state lawmakers to support AB96. This bill is named for the 96 elephants killed each day in the name of ivory. Help pass legislation to ban ivory sales in our State, go to this link and sign the letter


The Bay Area's award-winning Oakland Zoo is home to more than 660 native and exotic animals. The Zoo offers many educational programs and kid's activities perfect for science field trips, family day trips and exciting birthday parties. Oakland Zoo is dedicated to wildlife conservation onsite and worldwide. Nestled in the Oakland Hills, in 500-acre Knowland Park, the Zoo is located at 9777 Golf Links Road, off Highway 580. The East Bay Zoological Society (Oakland Zoo) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization supported in part by members, contributions, the City of Oakland and the East Bay Regional Parks.