SOOO, I suggested SF Zoo. Got on their website and am now all excited at the prospect of taking Toddlerspeak (TS) to go see it. She’s been to a couple Zoos before; a local petting zoo (she’s actually scared to feed the animals herself) which has been there since I was a kid. It’s ok, but it’s a petting zoo and it's kinda old, etc... And we took her to the Topeka Zoo when visiting the outlaws last Thanksgiving (2003). They were thrilled to get to take her, and very high on their local zoo. (They had apparently been involved w/fundraising & such to help get a lion exhibit going in the 80s.) Honestly, it was pretty depressing. I’m not huge on “caged” animals to begin with, and since there was snow on the ground (remind me again why we were at an outdoor venue in November, IN THE MIDWEST????) It as so cold that the animals were mostly hanging out in this one big building (and it wasn't really all that big). Basically they were each in a kind of kennel and it was really kind of sad (think giraffe in kennel, need I say more?). But the worst part was the crazy lion at the lion exhibit. She just kept pacing by the fence. Even the kids could tell she was off her rocker. Very depressing (as if Topeka isn’t depressing enough on it’s own, but that's another story for another time).
Hopefully the SF Zoo will be in better shape. And even if the weather sucks, the animals are still outside in an area the feels like an open space.
I started thinking about what else we could do to go be local tourists and came up w/a New Year's resolution. "We need to be local tourists at least once a month. " A couple years ago we made a similar resolution to go to the beach at least once a month (Daddyspeak’s family owns a home on the beach which is approximately 20 minutes from us.) And it worked out really well. We really enjoyed the place, and we need to get back into that groove too.