Sean Piverger | Wednesday, February 08, 2017
When guests come to the Oakland Zoo they are treated to a plethora of excitement. They see different animals (tigers, elephants, giraffes, chimpanzees,
etc.), board the sky ride to see animals from a high distance, ride the roller coaster and other rides in “Adventure Landing,” and attend other various
activities. But changes are being made to the zoo. Once the changes are made in the Knowland Park area, the California Trail will be born. The trail
will open in 2018. As an Oakland Zoo employee, I think that this expansion is good because it allows the guests to make brand new memories.
For over a decade, the Oakland Zoo has been working on a plan to extend its borders in order to make way for the California Trail which will not only include
a gondola ride and restaurant but will also include new animals including jaguars, mountain lions, and grizzly bears. The trail will also include a
camp area along with a new playground and learning area. Having these new additions to the zoo is a good thing because change is good. Working in operations
gives me the opportunity to see guests enjoy what the zoo has to offer. From seeing them ride the train to watching the elephants roam around their
exhibit, kids and adults would have a great time enjoying the rides and watching/learning about the animals that dwell in the zoo. That and create
fun memories. And with this expansion, folks will see new exhibits and learn more about the new animals that roam the park therefore allowing them
to see something that is different and exciting at the same time.
When I was a ride operator, I would see to it that the kids and adults understand the rules so that they won’t fall down and get hurt. I currently operate
the rides ticket booth and tell them how the tickets work and try to help them out as much as I can so that they can have a pleasant experience at
the rides area. There are times when I see the same guests and their kids come by and say hi and let me know how they are doing. For me it’s not just
about the talk but it’s about the connection that I make with guests so that we can understand each other. And once we connect with each other, nothing
can go wrong. We at the zoo are here to help out in any way that we can because if we want the guests to have a good experience at the zoo, then we
must provide them with all the attention that they need so that they can remember us in a good light. I don’t know what the future will hold for me
when the trail opens but I hope that somewhere down the line I can be involved with helping the guests understand what they need to learn about the
trail and the animals that inhabit the area. For all I know I can write blog more about the trail (I wrote for the zoo magazine, “Roar”). That way
by helping out our guests, they’ll know that we can be counted on if they need our help.
Despite the fact that all of these changes are happening at the Oakland Zoo, I think that the one thing that won’t ever change is the zoo experience. When
guests come to the zoo, they learn how animals live, eat, survive, and more. Going to the zoo is an educational experience because it provides them
with an awareness about these animals and with this expansion, guests can see a whole new world of possibilities that they haven’t seen before. And
by entering the trail, they can spread the word to their friends and family members about what is going on at the zoo. And when they come to the zoo,
they can create their own experiences and share them with others and so on.
The Oakland Zoo is a place to make wonderful memories. And by having the California Trail in place, guests will enter and leave the zoo with a new trail