Read for Adventure Returns - MetroFamily Magazine
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Read for Adventure Returns

Reading Time: 3 minutes 

Read for Adventure, promotes reading, family togetherness and monarch conservation while providing a wild offer – complimentary Zoo admission!

The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden celebrates the fifth season of its statewide literacy program, Read for Adventure, by inviting Oklahoma families to experience the unique benefits of this program. Sponsored by OG&E, Read for Adventure introduces participants to the importance of protecting monarch butterflies and other pollinators as well as native habitat through an original children’s book, Juniper’s Butterfly Garden–A Small Start for a Better World. Oklahoma library cardholders are invited to check out Juniper’s Butterfly Garden, from any participating public and tribal library location within the state, to receive a voucher redeemable for free general admission to the OKC Zoo for up to four people (child, adult or senior).

Read for Adventure provides an engaging activity for Oklahoma families that not only promotes spending time together but also sparks an interest in helping protect the natural world. Since its inception in 2017, more than 38,000 Oklahomans have had the opportunity to experience the OKC Zoo at no cost through the Read for Adventure program.

“The Zoo is grateful to OG&E and our library partners for their continued support of Read for Adventure and we look forward to sharing this one-of-a-kind reading program with Oklahoma’s communities,” said Dwight Lawson, OKC Zoo’s executive director and CEO. “We hope this program inspires new audiences to embrace their passions for reading and learning more about and caring for the wildlife and wild places around them.”

“We love this partnership with the Oklahoma City Zoo, which is a fun, creative way to inspire young readers and their families to care for our environment,” said Christi Woodworth, OG&E’s Vice President of Corporate Communications, Brand and Marketing. “We are committed to supporting monarch butterflies — OG&E’s service area falls directly along their annual migration path, and we intentionally plant flowers and native grasses and adapt our mowing practices in support of their journey. Through storytelling, the Read for Adventure program is showing young Oklahomans how they can make a difference.”

“Summer is a time for children and their families to explore fun new learning opportunities,” said Bill Young, public information manager at the Oklahoma Department of Libraries. “In addition to discovering all that their community libraries have to offer this summer, families also have the opportunity to go on an exciting field trip to the Oklahoma City Zoo thanks to the Read for Adventure program.”

Read for Adventure’s book, Juniper’s Butterfly Garden was written by Oklahoma City resident and OKC Zoo’s Creative Services Manager, Autumn Heigle, and illustrated by Nadia Ronquillo. This original book expresses the joy a child finds on her adventure to learn about monarch butterflies and the importance of creating habitat space for these vital pollinators. Additionally, readers will find information about planting a garden for monarchs and other pollinators and their migratory path through Oklahoma in the back of Juniper’s Butterfly Garden.

The monarch butterfly population has dropped by over 80 percent in the last 20 years. The main reason for this is habitat loss throughout the monarch’s migration and breeding range. Each spring and fall, millions of monarch butterflies funnel through Oklahoma as they make their annual migration from central Mexico to southern Canada. Both the OKC Zoo and OG&E recognize the importance of these pollinators and the urgency of restoring their population and seasonal habitat.

Read for Adventure begins Monday, June 21, and continues through Thursday, March 31, 2022. Zoo admission vouchers are redeemable through Thursday, June 30, 2022. Vouchers can be redeemed at the Zoo’s ticket windows, reservations are not required. To learn more about the program and for a list of participating libraries, visit www.okczoo.org/readforadventure.

The Oklahoma City Zoo is currently in its summer hours and open daily open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with the last entry no later than 4 p.m. Located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35, the OKC Zoo is a proud member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the American Alliance of Museums, Oklahoma City’s Adventure District and an Adventure Road partner. Regular admission is $12 for adults and $9 for children ages 3-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free.

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