For the first time in over a century and a half, Lincoln Park Zoo was closed due to the severity of the coronavirus pandemic. We’re sure we’re not the only ones rejoicing in the fact that as of this weekend, Lincoln Park Zoo will reopen its doors again to Chicago, followed by Shedd Aquarium and Brookfield Zoo this July.
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Those with memberships to the zoo can get early access to Lincoln Park Zoo starting this Friday, June 26th, through Sunday, June 28th. On Monday, June 29th, the zoo will be open to members and the public alike.
Like all other establishments opening in the midst of the pandemic, Lincoln Park Zoo will be taking many precautions to ensure the safety of their guests. As per the recommendation by city and state officials, all visitors frequenting Lincoln Park Zoo will be required to make a reservation. As always, Lincoln Park Zoo remains a free admission institution and reservations will not incur a fee.
To make a reservation, guests can use Eventbrite or call directly at 312-742-2000. Reservations can be made every hour, on the hour from 10 am to 4 pm. Guests have been kindly requested to keep their visit to around 2 hours so as not to exceed capacity limitations and allow for as many patrons as possible to experience Lincoln Park Zoo again after its extended closure.
Aside from reservations, Lincoln Park Zoo is instituting the following safety guidelines:
- Guests who are medically able will be required to wear a face covering
- High touchpoints will have restricted access
- Number of handwashing stations will be increased
- Sanitation rounds will be increased
- All gates, besides the East and West Gate entrances, will be open to the public to assists with the flow of traffic
- Food and gifts will be available via outdoor, minimum, or no-contact transactions
- Guests will be directed via one-way paths through the zoo in order to adhere to social distancing guidelines.
It should be noted that while the outdoor exhibits will be visible, all indoor habitats will be closed until further notice.
Brookfield Zoo announced their plans to reopen as well; members can go starting on July 1st and enjoy the grounds for a whole week until it opens to the general public on July 8th. Like Lincoln Park Zoo, Brookfield Zoo will require reservations and require that guests above the age of 2 wear masks. Brookfield Zoo will also be instituting a cashless environment, meaning that only debit and credit cards will be allowed for transactions accepted at food carts and merchandise kiosks. In a similar fashion as Lincoln Park Zoo, all indoor spaces at Brookfield Zoo will be closed. Admission to Brookfield Zoo is $24.95 for adults, $17.95 for children 3-11, and $19.95 for seniors 65 and older. Parking at the zoo is $15.
Shedd Aquarium also plans to reopen its doors in the coming weeks. Beginning July 3rd, Shedd Aquarium will be open to the public. A members-only preview will be held the day prior on July 2nd. Member pre-sale for all available dates are now live; pre-sale for the general public for visits starting on July 3rd begins tomorrow, June 25th, at 12 pm. The Shedd Aquarium has implemented a number of safety guidelines to ensure guests are safe, given the fact that one must be indoors to experience Shedd’s attractions. For a full understanding of all the implementations, visit their website.
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Featured Image Credit: Lincoln Park Zoo