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Photo Gallery Muriel's Ranch
Photo Gallery
Muriel's Ranch

Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association

Muriel's Ranch

Muriel's RanchSince its opening in 2001, Muriel's Ranch and its Contact Yard have been a favorite destination for our young visitors and their families. The Maxwell H. Gluck Foundation's support of this very special "petting yard" in the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens provides an experiential lesson about loving and respecting animals. From the very beginning of the visit, where children learn to wash their hands so as to not spread human germs to the animals, to learning to brush the coats gently rather than pat, to hearing stories and anecdotes from the volunteers about the relationship of the animals, to the understanding that the animals need "time outs" from all the brushing, to washing their own hands when they leave to protect themselves from animal germs – it's all an unforgettable lesson, one which will inform each child's understanding of the natural world and sets the stage for a fully engaging visit to the Zoo.

With budget cuts curtailing the operating hours of Muriel's Ranch, the Maxwell H. Gluck Foundation awarded GLAZA a to enable the Zoo to hire education specialists to assure that the Yard remain open all day, 7 days a week through June 2013. With professional staff supported by the volunteers, the Zoo is able to offer the public an outstanding educational experience. A curriculum has been developed emphasizing the important roles of ranch animals, supported by informational graphics, props and messaging provided by both staff and volunteers. Guests leave with more knowledge of, and an increased appreciation for the importance of ranch animals and our dependence upon them, and a great introduction to the Zoo's underlying conservation message.  The Contact Yard at Muriel's Ranch will serve more than 250,000 children and their families and teachers through June 2013.

Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association website