Usually groups that we go with to things like this are geared toward kids with Chronic illness such as Cancer. This one was very much geared to kids with physical disabilities. There were SO many kids with wheelchairs and trachs. It was so nice to see that we "fit in" a little.
Ty LOVES certain animals. Monkeys, elephants, Tigers/Lions, and Giraffes. I am sure it has nothing to do with Mickey Mouse pet project or his fascination with Baby Einsteins. We waited till the day of the dream night to tell him we were going to the zoo. All day he kept asking if he could bring an elephant home to be his pet.
When we got there we got right in line for Dinner. We were ready to have some food. Well Dallas and I were. Ty just humored us. We headed off to see his favorite ( see the list above) animals. We weren't sure just how much he would handle and how much he could see or enjoy. So we were ready to test our luck.
The first animal we saw was a Turkey. It was walking across the road. Oh was he NOT a happy camper. He was able to see it but it scared him to death. I really got worried that this would be what our whole night was going to be like.
It followed us around so we headed down to the monkey house. We tried to keep his zoo visit really geared to what he likes. So we headed to see and find some monkeys. We didn't get very far when we saw some elephants. We did see the daddy elephant away from the mom and baby and it was a little to close for Tyler so I didn't know how we were going to get him to look at them. So we deiced to keep heading down the path.
We saw a Rhino and Ty wasn't impressed but I took a picture any way.
Next up we went into the monkey house. The first few cages were empty and then we heard some people laughing. A HUGE gorilla was playing with the stuff in the cage. He was really cute but he stopped when we got there. Thankfully he was still up to moving around and playing. It was really funny to hear Tyler say " Hi monkey, I am Tyler, this is mommy and this is daddy. Lets be friends."
Dallas even seemed to really like the gorilla. He was trying to get him to stand up to see exactly how much bigger the gorilla was than him. Ty decided to help his dad convince the monkey to do it.
Because we had a list of things that we wanted Tyler to see and be able to squeeze in and still get home at a good hour we went on over to the Asian area. They have some really great Asian Tigers. At first we couldn't see much but Dallas went on a little hike and we were able to see some tigers. I am not sure if Ty could see them but they were VERY pretty and really cool.
The warning on the cage really made me laugh. I can't imagine the thought that would be running through your head if you saw that AND saw the tiger stop and spray. Holy we seriously laughed!
Next we headed right on over to the Giraffes. On Mickey Mouse pet project they have Daisy looking for her favorite pet. As you can tell by the list of favorites that at least ONE of those is on the list for Daisy was a giraffe. His name is Long fellow.
As we headed to the cage we noticed how close it was. It was so close that Tyler freaked out. We held him and we tried to get him to look. Finally Dallas and I went close enough and let Tyler do his thing. turns out he really liked it.
He kept calling it long fellow and we decided to attempt to go into the feeding place where you could possibly see them come in and eat and be really close. He loved it. Again, we were horrified he would have a freak out. But he talked to it and called it a name and had a good time inside.
After heading outside we wanted to see the other 2 that had been eating and tried to get a picture together with Tyler. That so didn't work. But the Giraffes are some pretty amazing animals.
We figured by this point we were all done and headed back toward the Elephants. This time he was OK looking at them. He would say that they were eating peanuts and going to the Elephant parade ( yep, little Einsteins.) He liked the baby and noticed she was eating carrots.
The last stop of the night ( other than a mom is having contractions stop) was the train. Oh we was so excited to ride the train. I didn't get a picture but he was totally on board with ride. When we got on he waited till they blew the whistle and said " All aboard." He had a great time.
In fact he had such a good time it was all he could talk about. It really was the highlight and I was glad his dad was smarter than I to have us wait. He was still wondering why we couldn't take home a elephant to be our pet.
It was a great time and I am glad we went. Tyler was a blast to take. We might even have to go back. He would love to ride the train another million and one times and I want him to play on the play stuff. Plus I kinda like the animals. I can't wait to see the other new stuff that is coming.
Thanks to the Hogle Zoo and Chick-fil-A for sponsoring the event. We had a great time. Thanks to Shriner's Hospital for the invitation and the several other places that we were offered a ticket or 2.