Dinosaur Invasion! at Rosamond Gifford Zoo extended through Sept. 16

Dinosaur Invasion! at Rosamond Gifford Zoo extended through Sept. 16

The colossal animatronic dinosaurs that invaded the Rosamond Gifford Zoo for the summer are staying longer than expected. The zoo had planned for the dinosaurs to depart the day after Labor Day, but has arranged to extend their stay through Sept. 16.

“Many of our guests have been commenting that they wished the dinosaurs could stay longer, so we’re really glad we are able to keep them another two weeks,” said Janet Agostini, President of the Friends of the Zoo, which presented the exhibit.

The extension inspired the zoo to add a special event to celebrate the dinos and give them a fun send-off. An early-entry party at the zoo, Donuts with Dinos Farewell Celebration, will be held from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 9 – Grandparents Day. The ticketed event will include a raffle for a dinosaur gift basket that includes a genuine dinosaur tooth. For more info, visit syracusezooevents.org.

The 13 moving, roaring dinosaurs that have inhabited zoo grounds since Memorial Day weekend have boosted zoo attendance, provided educational opportunities and served as “ambassadors of extinction” that help put the zoo’s mission of saving endangered species in perspective, zoo officials said.

“At first I had some trepidation about having animatronic dinosaurs at the zoo,” said Zoo Director Ted Fox. “But once I saw how lifelike they are, I realized it was an awesome opportunity to be able to share with our visitors that this is what we don’t want to happen to the animals in our care today. We don’t want elephants, rhinos or tigers to be something that people in the future can only see as animatronic robots.”

The zoo also is celebrating the extra dinosaur days with surprise giveaways to the first 100 children to arrive at the zoo daily through September 16. Follow the zoo’s Facebook for updates on freebies and other zoo events.

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