Pine Grove Zoo comes out of hibernation with its ‘Gone Wild’ fundraising event

Last year, the Pine Grove Zoo in Little Falls held its first annual “Zoo Gone Wild … Coming out of Hibernation” party. “What a fantastic night,” said Marnita Van Hoecke, zoo director. “Not only did attendees stay late after the event to reminisce about the evening, we also received e-mails and calls weeks later attesting to the great time everyone had. So, if you missed out last year, don’t repeat your mistake.”

Tickets are on sale now for the second annual event which will be held Friday, March 16, at the Falls Ballroom in Little Falls. Entertainment will be provided by “Deuces Wild,” a dueling piano act. Social hour with hors d’oeuvres will run from 7 p.m. – 8 p.m., followed by entertainment from 8 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.

Every year, each organization or business can relate to reviewing their business plan and adjusting as needed. Every non-profit that holds a fundraiser knows the challenges that are required to make a successful event. Normally some of these challenges include evaluating old ideas and incorporating new ones. Successful events are always changing.

The purpose of the Zoo’s fundraising events is to increase awareness about the Zoo, as well as, raise funds for improving the Zoo. Improving the Zoo includes the addition of new animals and habitats as well as updating the existing animal habitats. Improving the Zoo also includes enhancing the visitor’s experience by developing progressive educational programs and making them available to all people regardless of age or income.

A few of the improvements that have been made possible through the Zoo’s fundraisers include: the bears have moved to a big habitat and their old cages are gone. In place of the old cages is a large storage building and a new, spacious wolf exhibit (complete with wolf puppies that arrived as newborns last spring). The public now has access to an Education Building, low cost and free educational programs all spring and summer and very cool outreach animals and artifacts to touch and learn about. In addition, improvements have been made to staff areas, safety training and continuing education and more. The Pine Grove Zoo is committed to developing and communicating a dynamic message about the Zoo and this community.

Organizations are invited to become a part of the success, by making a monetary donation or by purchasing tickets so employees or customers can enjoy the evening. Individual as well as a table of 10 tickets can be purchased on a first-come, first-serve basis and will procure the “best seats in the house.”

To add to the excitement of the evening, each Zoo Board member will be auctioned off to the highest bidding table. The winning bid ensures that a particular board member will be at the table’s beck and call for the evening.

Call Pine Grove Zoo at (320) 616-5595 for information, to offer sponsorship or to purchase tickets. Organizations are asked to call by Monday, March 5, with their sponsorship to guarantee their organization’s name on that list of supporters.

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