UPDATE: Due to the amount of interest generated by the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium event, Marietta Community Foundation has decided to change locations from Boys & Girls Clubs of Washington County to The Lafayette Hotel (101 Front Street, Marietta, OH). This change will allow more local children to experience the Zoo and learn about these extraordinary animals! Photo releases will still need to be signed upon entry and the event will still take place from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Grand Ballroom. The event is still free for local children and families!

Washington County is going to get a little wilder than usual this month! Thursday, March 12th, Marietta Community Foundation and Marietta Noon Rotary Club have partnered to bring The Columbus Zoo & Aquarium to the Mid-Ohio Valley for a special event at the Boys & Girls Club of Washington County.

“Although Columbus is only two hours away, some children in our area may never get the chance to go and experience the zoo,” said Heather Allender, President & CEO of Marietta Community Foundation. “We are making the zoo accessible so all of our local children have the chance to learn about these incredible animals!”

During the event, local children and families will be able to see 6-8 animals while a specially trained animal handler teaches the audience about the creature’s habitat and its status in the wild.

“Having the zoo come to them opens up the world to children,” said Rebecca Johnson, Executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of Washington County. “Children inherently learn better by engaging all their senses. The traveling zoo allows youth to explore animals, learn about ecology, and investigate possible career choices they never knew existed.”

The presentation will last from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Along with BGCWC, several other childcare groups in the area will be in attendance including Ely Chapman and the Marietta YMCA.

Individuals who wish to reserve their spot may do so by calling the Foundation at 740-373-3286, but seating is very limited. Admission is free to local children and families, however, a photo release form must be signed and submitted prior to entry. These forms will be available at the event.

The Marietta Community Foundation meets National Standards for operational quality, donor service and accountability in the community foundation sector. Founded in 1974, the Marietta Community Foundation has grown over the years thanks to a number of generous gifts.

Marietta Community Foundation works to improve the lives of all Washington County’s citizens and local nonprofits. If you are inspired to bring more educational opportunities to the area, please contact Heather Allender at heather@mcfohio.org.