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Love at the Zoo

February 11 - 12, 2023
9:00AM - 3:30PM
Animals. Enrichments. Feel the love.

Animal Love

Feb. 11-12
Feel the love
Watch animals enjoy Valentine-themed enrichments like heart-shaped ice treats, bamboo hearts, whipped cream, watermelon, and more!
Hearts Galore
Do the "Heart Hunt"
Who loves animals? Walk the Zoo to spot 12 big heart cut-outs, each with a QR code unlocking a secret web page full of cute animal pics, videos and fun facts! Look for lovely photos ops and decorations scattered throughout the Zoo.
Zoo-themed Valentines
At the event & free e-cards
Want to say "I Love You" in a furry special way? Send a Valentine with an animal design and cute pun! Save and print, or send a free e-card. Or, make one in our plaza during Love at the Zoo! Guests are invited to bring a paper Valentine from home or make one at our Valentine station. Just drop them into our specially made Valentine mailboxes.
Animal Valentines

Valentine Treats

Love at the Zoo Keeper Chats & Animal Enrichments
10:30amPacific Seas AquariumSun Only: Dive Talk
11amAsian Forest SanctuaryKeeper Chat and heart-shaped enrichments for one of our tigers
12pmWild Wonders Outdoor TheaterValentine Close Encounters with some of our lovely animals
12:30pmRocky ShoresKeeper Chat and watch marine mammals enjoy special valentines
1pmElephant BarnWatch Suki enjoy watermelon treats
2pmRed Wolf WoodsKeeper Chat and learn why it's important for red wolves to breed as a critically endangered species
2:30pmMuskoxenWatch the muskoxen enjoy special valentines like heart-shaped watermelon
Other Valentine's and heart-shaped enrichments will happen at unscheduled times throughout the weekend.

Animal Stories

Introducing Twin Polar Bear Cubs Astra and Laerke

Astra and Laerke, two polar bear cubs who have captivated much of the country since their births two years ago at the Detroit Zoo, arrived at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium Friday evening. The twin sisters are settling into their new Tacoma home and will make their public debut Thursday, June 15. “These exceptional bears have captured the hearts of millions of people across the country with their heartwarming stories,” said Malia Somerville, interim general curator for Point Defiance Zoo.…

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New Polar Bears Arriving Soon

The Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) and the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, announced today that two polar bear cubs, Astra and Laerke, will move to Point Defiance Zoo in spring 2023.  The transfer is being conducted per recommendations by Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) polar bear population experts. As with all recommendations, zoos collaborate to ensure the best possible outcomes for the animals. These recommendations support the sustainability of a healthy, genetically diverse and demographically varied polar bear population,…

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Photo Ark: Results of A Collaborative Partnership

Collaborations with our community are an incredible opportunity to create meaningful connections. Tacoma students at Science and Math Institute (SAMi), School of the Arts (SOTA), and School of Industrial Design, Engineering and Art (IDEA) have the option to select a “Mini-term.” For one month, students participate in a daily, intensive project-based class. Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium and Tacoma Public Schools co-designed the Photo Ark class. And the results are beautiful and inspiring! Students in this course are able to…

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The perfect Valentine
Looking for the perfect Valentine? Come get a "hug" from a sea urchin! Take this behind-the-scenes tour of the Pacific Seas Aquarium.