Saturday, April 30, 2016

Z is for Zoo

The Zoo is a place that your whole family can enjoy. I recall a time not long after I had learned how to drive, and my parents gave me the keys to the car and said to take my two younger sisters to the zoo. They weren’t that much younger than me, two and five years younger to be exact, and I remember us having a great time looking at the animals, eating ice cream bars and feeling very grown up.

My Mom always enjoyed going to the zoo, even when she couldn’t walk very far. We’d get a wheelchair so that when she tired of walking, we could push her down the paths. She loved seeing the animals.

I think this is a universal enjoyment that everyone has, watching other species and exclaiming over their beauty and diversity. Going to the zoo would make a wonderful group event at your reunion if one is nearby. Either order a catered lunch, or cart it in yourselves, and make a time to meet up at midday for a shared meal. Reserve a large picnic area for your group if that is possible.

Strolling amongst the trees and animal enclosures will provide visiting time, and people can go on a train ride together around the property. You can even pose for group photos together. Just set a specific time and place for gathering.

If a zoo is not close to the site of your reunion, pick a different outing. Just be sure to schedule one group activity that makes a shared memory. Rent a huge dune buggy and go for a wild ride together. Go to a water park and float down a lazy river. Hike through a beautiful wooded state park. Try horseback riding on a local trail. Whatever is chosen, remember to include all ages and ability levels in the activity, so no one feels left out.

If you’re near a large body of water, go for a boat tour. In the Midwest, a land of lakes, there are tour boats that will cruise around the lake, the guide pointing out the sights in the case of mansions built as summer homes years and years ago, or if in more of an unspoiled setting, the plants and wildlife along the shore. If everyone chips in for the expense, you can get a sailboat to take people out on a lake.

For those even more adventurous, take rides in a hot air balloon over the countryside. There are more of these adventures across the country, and I am very familiar with the sight of hot air balloons overhead living in Albuquerque, home of the annual Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. That would make quite a memory for reunion guests.

A place to record the memories of your reunion can begin with the Family Reunion Keepsake Book, which is sold on this blog by clicking on the icon on the top right of the page.

Thanks for reading my blog. Comments appreciated!


  1. I am always so surprised at how emotional I get when I visit zoos or other nature parks. Animals are so special and keep us grounded I think.

  2. Thanks for being such a loyal reader, Alex. I appreciate your comments.

  3. I haven't been to the zoo in a long time. It's so beautiful--but smelly!

  4. Fall is a great time to visit a zoo. My husband and I recently attended the annual meeting at our zoo and there were some skunks roaming around. Fortunately, no one got sprayed!