WXXI AM News

Booming Business at Seneca Park Zoo

Rochester, NY – It's a day for booming business at the Seneca Park Zoo in Rochester.

Shorts and T-shirts replaced jackets today Tuesday as temperatures pushed towards 80 degrees across the Rochester area. Combine that weather with spring vacation and the new giraffe exhibit at the zoo, and you have zoo employees scrambling to handle thousands of visitors.

Zoo Director Larry Sorel says employees had to send visitors to parking lots in the lower Seneca Park and open up the back entrance to the zoo to acommodate the crowds. Inside the zoo, concession stands opened extra facilities and the animal care staff had to be put to work helping manage the crowds.

Sorel says the zoo is busier than it's been at this time over the last two years, but about what he expected with the good weather and the visiting giraffes.

If visitation continues at this rate, Sorel says the Seneca Park Zoo could set its third-highest attendance record this summer. The all-time record was set in 1997, when 505-thousand people visited the zoo. Sorel is predicting the zoo will break 400-thousand this summer.