Tonight we decided to make it a “family night” and enjoy a “merry not scary” Halloween themed evening with at the Santa Ana Boo at the Zoo. This family fun annual event is great for kids of all ages to enjoy candy, costumes, entertainment and more.
Did you know, Santa Ana Boo at the Zoo is one of Orange County’s longest-running Halloween events, providing a fun, safe, and family-friendly event for trick-or-treaters and children of all ages who love to wear costumes and embrace the Halloween spirit! When we entered the Zoo, we had a chance to speak with Cathi Decker, Executive Director of The Santa Ana Zoo. She shared with us that this awesome family event is actually an annual fundraiser for the Zoo. The proceeds from this year’s event will go directly to building the new otter exhibit they already have plans for. So, come join in on the fun – you have one night left – Friday October 30th from 5:30pm – 8:00pm.
We started off the evening with a ride around the park. The “Boofari” Express Train is a great way to quickly tour the park (for an additional fee) and figure out which animals you’d like to encounter first. Next the Conservation Carrousel is also open during Boo at the Zoo, entertaining little ghouls and goblins all night long.
Scattered throughout the park, we discovered 10 prize stations along the Trick-or-Treat Trail. Volunteers and awesome Orange County business passed out a variety of items like candy, mini coloring books, snack bars, and even books. A few of these fun prize stations also had a fun activity to participate in to win your fun reward.
Don’t forget your camera. While it is a memorable family night, you’re definitely going to want to get it on film. Fun photo opportunities are also scattered throughout the trails with themed inflatables, colorful pumpkins and even a photo opportunity with a snake!
While we were walking in, we noticed there was quite a large group of children in what looked like dance costumes. Come to find out, a Tustin dance company had volunteered to perform that evening. Every night of Santa Ana Boo at the Zoo, local groups are on hand to perform and entertain the crowd.
Want to learn about some of the creepy crawlies of Halloween? You can check out the Bug Hut or catch one of the 3 animal presentation shows nightly at Boo at the Zoo. We had the opportunity to check out mealworms, beetles, tarantulas, an owl, opossum and more.
You still have one more night to get in on the fun. General Admission to Santa Ana Boo at the Zoo is $16.95 per non-member ages 2 and up, and only $8.95 per Zoo Member ages 2 and up. Bonus: Children under the age of 2 are free. Join as a Member to receive your half price tickets! Tickets for the “Boo”fari Express and Carrousel will be available for $3 per ride or a $5 combo ticket for both rides. Tickets are available online at www.santaanazoo.org (valid any night of the event, nonrefundable – bring your receipt to Will Call on the night of the event). You may also purchase admissions at the main gate on the night of the event. For more information, please call (714) 953-8555 x12. So grab your costume and we’ll see YOU at the BOO at the Santa Ana ZOO!
Hot dogs, chips and soda will also be available for purchase nightly provided by the Tustin-Santa Ana Rotary Club, Zoo Docents, and Knowlwood Restaurant.
For those who are a little older and more adventurous, Santa Ana Boo at the Zoo has a separate area for “Teen Scream” haunted house (included in the regular price of admission). We did walk up to it, but once my littles heard the ghouls inside, they decided it wasn’t for them.