Boo at the Zoo: Mystery and Mischief

Photo Credits: Julie Larsen Maher © WCS

Boo at the Zoo, New York City’s go-to family-friendly Halloween destination returns to WCS’s (Wildlife Conservation Society) Bronx Zoo for five weekends in October. This year’s Boo at the Zoo activities are themed around animal behaviors and “Mystery and Mischief” of the world of wildlife.

Boo at the Zoo: Mystery and Mischief begins on Saturday, Oct. 3. All attractions and activities will embrace the spirit of the season while highlighting wildlife and conservation. Annual favorites including the hay maze, giant pumpkin carving demos, costume parades, magic and more will return with some additional Halloween surprises.

Jack O ‘Lantern Illumination, an eerie walk-through experience sponsored by Goosebumps, will take over the exhibits in the former World of Darkness building (near Somba Village) creating a one-of-a-kind illuminated Halloween display. Entertainment will include encore performances from Boo at the Zoo favorite, magician David Levitan.

For the social media savvy, the Bronx Zoo and Budget Travel will co-host an InstaMeet on Sat. and Sun. Oct. 3-4 in honor of the 12th World Wide InstaMeet Weekend, a celebration of Instagram’s diverse, global community and an opportunity to meet other Instagram photographers in beautiful settings like the Bronx Zoo. A special online-only 20 percent admission discount on Total Experience Tickets is available for those who want to participate in a photo scavenger hunt that includes the various Boo at the Zoo activities and spooky animal species known for making appearances in Halloween lore. The theme for the InstaMeet is “Who I Met Today” and prizes will be awarded for the best photos posted to Instagram tagging @BronxZoo, @BudgetTravel with the hashtags #WWIM12NY, #TodayIMet, #BooAtTheZoo and #MyBudgetTravel.

All Boo at the Zoo activities are included with the price of general admission with the exception of the Jack O’Lantern Illumination which is included with the Total Experience Ticket. Visit for a complete schedule of dates, performances and activities.

Boo at the Zoo: Mystery and Mischief activities
Jack O ‘Lantern Illumination, sponsored by Goosebumps

Walk through a dark, eerie tunnel filled with more than 1,000 hand-carved and beautifully lit Jack ‘O lanterns meticulously sculpted into various animal shapes. Created by Rise of the Jack O ‘Lanterns, the exhibit lanterns will consist of dozens of intricate, detailed portraits of animals ranging from bats, to reptiles, marine creatures, mammals, nocturnal birds, bugs, and mythical creatures.
Location: By Somba Village
Time: 10am- 5pm

Bronx Zoo & Budget Travel InstaMeet – World Wide InstaMeet 12

Those participating in the InstaMeet should meet at the rhino statues outside of Zoo Center at 10:00am. Once there, a list of photo subjects will be distributed with instructions and we will get underway. Don’t forget to mention @BronxZoo and @BudgetTravel and use the hashtags #WWIM12NY, #TodayIMet, #BooAtTheZoo, and #MyBudgetTravel on your pics for the day for a chance to win great prizes.
Location: Zoo Center
Time:    10am

3-D Carved Pumpkin Demonstrations
Professional pumpkin carvers from Sand Sculpture USA will be demonstrating their skill and displaying intricate pumpkin carvings of wildlife.
Location: Dancing Crane Plaza
Time: 11am-5pm

Costume Parade
Visitors can join the enchantment of a Halloween Parade. Hand-made puppets and props built by master costumers will be part of the fun as participants march through the zoo alongside an array of characters from the Alice Farley Dance Company.
Location: Starts at Zoo Center
Time: 12pm and 2pm.

Hay Maze
Let yourself get lost at the zoo with a Halloween maze filled with sudden starts, stops and lots of adventure.
Location: Butterfly Patio
Time: 11am – 5pm

Animal Themed Magic Shows
Enjoy a Boo at the Zoo family tradition with remarkable slight-of-hand and optical illusions from magic man David Levitan.
Location: Tent by bear exhibit
Time: 12pm, 2pm, 4pm

Treat Stations
Special locations around the park will help sweeten your visit.
Time: 11am–5pm

Crafts Workshop

Paint a wildlife-themed mask of your own.
Location: Dancing Crane Plaza
Time: 11am–4pm

Extinct Animal Graveyard
Learn about endangered and extinct animals at this spooky display.
Location: Mouse House lawn.

Boo at the Zoo Mystery Stations
Mystery station carts displayed by various exhibits will each offer a five-minute, highly interactive experience with live interpreters that will guide visitors through mini scientific inquiries about wildlife.

Boo at the Zoo is made possible by the generosity of these sponsors:
Canon, Empire BlueCross BlueShield, JetBlue


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