Rosie the snake, an armadillo, a spectacled owl and a French rooster welcomed 300 guests to the Santa Ana Zoo’s 25th annual gala. Hosted by the Friends of Santa Ana Zoo, the Zoofari dinner and fundraiser on Aug. 27 celebrated the zoo’s dedication to animal conservation.
“Zoofari has grown from a dedicated group of Zoo supporters who gathered to enjoy a festive evening to celebrate all that the Santa Ana Zoo has to offer,” said Cathi Decker, executive director of FOSAZ.
Best known for its large collection of monkeys, the Santa Ana Zoo opened 65 years ago. The reason for the zoo’s monkey menagerie: The land was donated under a provision that requires the zoo to house at least 50 monkeys. Thus, monkeys have been a huge inspiration for much of the zoo’s development – which now includes a soon-to-open Fifty Monkey Ferris Wheel.
Zoofari gala guests had an opportunity to tour the zoo, which was decorated with purple, black and silver flourishes, and see the area where a giant river otter habitat is planned.
The gala’s live and silent auctions raised $100,000.
“It means so much, especially raising the funds needed for all the special projects and improvements going on here,” Decker said.
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