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    More than just a zoo

    I have a love/hate relationship with zoos. I hate that animals are caged and domesticated to a degree simply so we humans can ooh, aah and ogle the once wild — and sometimes rare — creatures.

    That's the hate part of it. The love part is the amazement in the eyes of children when they see the creatures up close, as well as my love for photographing such moments. And I love, too, photographing the animals. It's hard to resist the lure of a good zoo.

    boys at aquarium

    When Jim and I spent some time with Bubby and Mac a couple weeks ago, we visited one zoo that's far more than a zoo — Arizona's Wildlife World Zoo & Aquarium and Safari Park (yes, that's the real mouthful of a name). The place truly is beyond huge, billed as "Arizona's largest collection of exotic animals." There are outdoor animals, indoor animals, more than 80 fresh- and salt-water exhibits, a petting zoo and merry go round, Dragon World (Mac's favorite), a beautiful white tiger, plus a skyride, boat ride and (Bubby's favorite) a log flume ride. And that's not even half of the description of this massive adventure park.

    Following is a glimpse of the photos from our day at Wildlife World Zoo & Aquarium and Safari Park. Not all the photos fit the slideshow space well, but all 71 — just a small portion of the tons I took — can be fully viewed and appreciated in the Brag Book tab of Grandma's Briefs:


    Interested in visiting? Here are the details:

    Wildlife World Zoo & Aquarium and Safari Park
    16501 W. Northern Ave.
    Litchfield Park, AZ 85340

    Today's question:

    What is your favorite exhibit at a zoo or aquarium... or safari park?

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    Reader Comments (7)

    I love the manatee exhibit at aquariums...such gentle giants! Of course, that's assuming they've been rescued because I much prefer seeing them in their natural habitat.

    February 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterNonnieKelly

    Bubby and Mac must have had their heads full of Animal Thoughts for days after that extensive trip into the animal world! They sure looked amazed in their pictures!

    My favorite at a zoo has always been the monkeys, they always amaze be with their antics!

    February 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAnn

    I share your mixed feelings about zoos, but I, too, see the grandkids learning (from the good zoos) amazing amounts about the animals of the world, how they live, and what they need in order to survive. And I love your photos.

    February 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterBLissed-Out Grandma

    What a fun place and the boys do look like they are having so much fun -- is that because of the animals or because they were there with you guys?! Maybe both! MY favorite place and exhibit is Sea World and the Penguins! I would do Sea World over the San Diego Zoo anytime.

    February 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGrandma Kc

    Those are really awesome pictures! I love seeing the expressions on the boys' faces.

    I too have mixed feelings about zoos now but I loved them as a kid and my children and grandchildren learn so much from them.

    February 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDebbie E.

    Great photos of a great day with the grandkids. When those mixed feelings about zoos start leaning too much to the negative, remember that zoos are "the last best hope" for many rare and endangered species.

    February 25, 2014 | Unregistered Commenteraxiesdad

    I've always hated the "caged" part too.

    February 25, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterkelley
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