George R.R. Martin likes our dragon!

Fans of the popular book by George R. R. Martin, A Song of Ice and Fire, which also spawned the HBO series Game of Thrones, might have caught on that our new Komodo dragon is the namesake of the book’s dragon princess.  Well, as it turns out, Mr. Martin got wind of her and mentioned that he thinks this is really cool on his blog.  Needless to say, we’re very flattered!  And our herpetologists, who happen to be HUGE fans, are positively swooning.   You can catch his comment here.

Mr. Martin, thanks for making our day!  Khaleesi is quite a regal dragon, and definitely lives up to her name.


Ready for her close up!

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Progress, progress…

Our super-awesome splash pad is beginning to take shape.  Here’s a photo of the progress, circa week 1…


And at week 3, you can start to see the footprint…


And the giant flowers are waiting in the wings!


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Countdown to Splash Down!

Okay, you’ve probably heard a few mysterious mentions about a splash pad coming to Knoxville Zoo.  A very fabulous splash pad.  Maybe even wondered what on earth it’s going to look like.  Or when it will be a reality.  Well, it’s your lucky day, because we’re about to spill the beans on what will be a totally new way to experience Knoxville Zoo!

We are indeed building a splash pad, and this one is going to be a humdinger.  At 5,000 square feet, it will be the largest in Knoxville.  We thought a safari theme would be most appropriate, and it will include play areas that will appeal to everyone from toddlers to teenagers, and there’s even an area for the entire family to enjoy a little water fun.

In a stroke of design genius, the play area will feature two life-sized “giraffes” that spout water when kids work together to direct the flow.  (We’ve got to confess we think that’s pretty cool.)  It’s also going to have water hoops and loops, team sprays that use cooperative play to send water several stories in the air and colorful giant flowers.  Of course, to make our guests’ visit more comfortable, there will also be changing areas with storage and restrooms, too. And to really sweeten the pot, all this fun is included with your zoo admission-or if you’re zoo members, with your zoo membership, so you can come play all summer long!

When will all this awesomeness be a reality?  Drum roll, please…we’ve already BROKEN GROUND and are working hard to have everything ready just in time for summer vacation this year.  So stay tuned for regular updates on the progress, because we want you guys to share in our excitement as we count down to our fabulous splash down!

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