2017 Upcoming Events and Activities at the Santa Barbara Zoo

Selected upcoming events and activities at the Santa Barbara Zoo in 2017:

Thanksgiving Day Pumpkin Smash on November 23, 2017 10am to 3:30pm

Animal lovers are encouraged to get the kids out of the house this Thanksgiving and come to the Zoo for a smashin’ good time! Watch as the elephants, gorillas, and other Zoo animals play and interact with pumpkins.

Cost: free with Zoo admission. 

The Zoo closes early today, at 3:30 p.m.

Snow Leopard Festival / Sledding at the Zoo on 12/3/17 10am-3pm

A rare blizzard hits the Central Coast on Sunday, December 3 when 80 tons of snow is delivered for the Santa Barbara Zoo’s annual “Snow Leopard Festival,” held on Sunday, December 3, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (9 a.m. early admission for SB Zoo members only).

The snow will be shaped into sledding runs for kids (sleds provided), deposited in a snow play area, and provided as enrichment to many of the Zoo’s animal residents, including the highly endangered big cats honored at this festival.

At age 19, the Zoo’s male snow leopard Everett is the oldest snow leopard living in a zoo accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). The Zoo’s female Zoe is aged 14. The two are not a breeding pair, but they often are seen on exhibit together, which is rare among this solitary species.

With the holidays not far away, guests are also encouraged to visit the Zoo’s temporary exhibit of reindeer, where Santa is available for photos and gift requests (Wednesdays through Sundays only, starting November 22). Two male reindeer, named Lightning and Holiday, are on view from Wednesday, November 22, 2017 through Tuesday, January 1, 2018.

Early 9 a.m. entry for SB Zoo Members only!

Cost: festival is free with Zoo admission; sledding is $3/child.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at the Zoo

The Zoo is open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, so come spend some holiday time with your animal friends at the Santa Barbara Zoo!

General Admission until 2:30 p.m.; SB Zoo Member Admission until 3:00 p.m.  Zoo closes at 3:30 p.m.

The Santa Barbara Zoo is open daily from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; general admission $17 for adults, $13 for seniors 64+, $10 for children 2-12, and free for children under 2. Parking $7. The Santa Barbara Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).