When I was very young we lived near the Alaska Zoo. I don’t remember much from then. I do however remember trips we made after we moved away.
The two animals I remember the most are Annabelle (the elephant) and Binky (the polar bear). They are both gone now, but in their time they were quite famous. Annabelle met an acting US President when she was young and became a painter later in life. Binky was just the zoo’s polar bear, until two incidents made him famous. First, there was the tourist that got between the polar bear enclosure and the fence meant to keep people out…just to get a better photo. Binky reached out and gave her a “hug” which landed her in the local hospital. Then there was a stupid teenage who actually went in the polar bear enclosure. The next day Binky and Nunka (his partner in crime) were tossing the teenager’s red sneaker around. If memory serves me right both survived.
I love the changes that the zoo has made. It’s expanded a lot since my childhood and the expansion has been done well. It’s setup to make visitors feel like they are walking through the woods and are stumbling across the animals. None of the trails are paved which I felt added to the natural feel (mothers with strollers didn’t seem to like it much). Over-all the enclosures seemed rather roomy.
The New (to me) Polar Bears
The best photos I took were of the two new polar bears “playing”. When I first got to the zoo they were sound asleep which was disappointing. On the way out I decided to swing by again in hopes that they would be awake and walking around. I was PLEASENTLY SURPRISED to see that they were not only awake, but “playing” roughly with each other. After the aggressive play time, the smaller of the two was very tired and could barely get out of the water. The larger one went over and consoled it.
Consoling a tired friend.
The Other Animals
Additional Zoo Information
- The cost to visit the zoo is $12 for adult, $9 for senior citizens and military, and $6 for children (age two and under free).
- In the summer the zoo opens at 9:00 am and 10:00 am in the winter.
- For more information check out their website.
More about My Trip
To see all post about my Alaska/Canada Road Trip click here.