Zoo Happenings

WHAT’s HAPPENING – Spring 2016

Summer Camp 2016 registration opens to all Monday, March 28th!
Learn more HERE.

Have a child between 6 months and 5 years old? Our Spring Early Childhood classes still have spots!
Learn more HERE.

A Howling good time! Breakfast with the Wolves tickets now on sale.
Click HERE to learn more and register.

It’s a Party for the Planet! Spend Saturday, April 23rd, the day after Earth Day, at the zoo celebrating your favorite home, Earth! Events, programs and activities included with zoo admission.
Learn more HERE.

Breakfast with the Gibbons!

Breakfast With the Gibbons!

Swing over to Turtle Back Zoo this APE-ril for Breakfast with the Gibbons! Turtle Back Zoo’s white-cheeked gibbons, Suki and Sovann, invite you to enjoy a healthy continental breakfast and join in primate related activities and crafts in our brand new Education Center from 8:30 AM – 10:45 AM on Sunday April 19th or Sunday, June 14th, 2015. Continue to explore your wild side with a visit to the gibbon exhibit. Guests will meet the gibbon keepers and help prepare breakfast for the gibbons! Lots of fun and a few surprises are in store! Recommended for families with children ages 5 and up (all children must be accompanied by a paying adult). Space is limited and $20 per person pre-registration is required. The price includes breakfast, activities, and admission to the zoo for the day. 



Zoo Camp Registration is OPEN to ALL – Monday, March 9, 2015

Zoo Camp Registration is OPEN to everyone beginning Monday, March 9, 2015.

Camp is a great way to build confidence, make friends, discover and experience the zoo and it’s animals in a new way.  Give your favorite child the gift of Zoo Camp!


Last Weekend for Members Only Registration – Summer Zoo Camp

Turtle Back Zoo Members – Reminder that this is the last weekend to register early for summer camp before registration opens to the public on Monday, March 9th.

Spaces are still available for Spring Break Camps.  Give your children the gift of Zoo Camp this Spring.




Owl Festival – Saturday, March 7, 2015 11am-3pm

Owl Festival Flyer 2015

Come celebrate owls at Turtle Back Zoo on Saturday, March 7, 2015 from 11-3.

Participate in hands on activities including owl pellet dissection, owl calls and crafts.

Pick up plans to build an owl nest box.

Meet an owl or give your best hoot in our owl calling contest.


Spring Break Camp Registration is OPEN!

Spring Break Zoo Camp: 


Spring Break Mini Zoo Camp is coming! The animals are coming out of hibernation and so should you, too! Join us for fun and learning at Turtle Back Zoo! We will use our indoor and outdoor spaces to explore, discover, and examine local and exotic wildlife. We are offering 2 sessions of this mini-camp that will each run 4 days from 9 AM to 3 PM;  Session 1: Mon 3/30/15 – Thurs 4/2/15 & Session 2: Tues 4/7/15 – Fri 4/10/15. Each session will offer 3 age groups to keep the activities age appropriate. Grades K-1, 2-3, & 4-5.


New Docent Interview Date, Sun., Jan. 11, 2015

Essex County’s Turtle Back Zoo in West Orange, NJ is growing by leaps and bounds and we expect the 2015 season to be busy and exciting! Volunteer your time with the rewarding experience of becoming a Zoo Docent.
Docents are among the most visible members of our Zoo community. Their main goal is to provide the Zoo guests with quality, educational and enriching experiences while they are here. Turtle Back Zoo docents act as guides, give educational talks, and are stationed throughout the Zoo to provide information to visitors about the Zoo and its animal collection. You don’t need a background in biology or zoology, just a love of zoos and interest in public service.
Docent Volunteer Requirements:
– must be at least 18 years old
– submit an application found at: http://turtlebackzoo.com/docent-volunteers/
– complete an interview held on Sunday, January 11, 2015
– complete a 6-day training course held on Sundays, beginning February 15, on Zoo grounds
– pay a one-time fee of $25 to cover training materials
– commit to volunteer a designated number of hours/events on at least two selected days a month throughout the year
Interested?! Contact the Zoo’s Volunteer Coordinator at tbzdocents@yahoo.com or
call 973-731-5800 ext. 306.
** While a love of animals draws many volunteers to Turtle Back Zoo, volunteers are not directly involved with the handling and care of the Zoo’s animals.**

Appreciate a Dragon Day, Sat., Jan. 17, 2015, 11 – 3

Dragons have significance in cultures around the world. Explore some of the myths and legends surrounding dragons. Keeper talks at our Komodo Dragon exhibit throughout the day and dragon stories, games, a scavenger hunt, and craft and activities for the kids are part of the action. At the 12:30 Komodo Dragon Keeper Talk, Shu will be letting us know his pick for the NFC championship game. Is Shu a Seahawks or a Packers fan?  Appreciate a Dragon Day 2015 Flyer and Scavenger Hunt revised

Family Fun Night!

Every Wednesday and Thursday during the summer, the Turtle Back Zoo remains open until 8 pm to allow families to come out to the zoo, enjoy live entertainment, a special dinner menu at our Zoo Cafe, and go wild with our animals!

Adventure Course Job Fairs


Seasonal Positions for Spring, Summer, and Fall

Job Fairs to be held:

March 10, 2014 3pm-5pm

March 18, 2014 3pm-5pm

You must RSVP.  (973) 731-5800   Ext. 0

See here for additional information:  Tree Top Flyer

Zoo Camp Registrations Open for Members

Starting February 24th, Zoo Camp registration will be open for members.

Please have your membership I.D. number available.  This number is located on the back of your membership card.

To register, please click the following link:  Zoo Camp Registration

Upcoming Events

  • February 20, 2017See the Seas Mini-Camp, Parts I and II
  • February 25, 2017 11:00 amSeasonal Job Fair
  • February 25, 2017 2:00 pmSOLD OUT - Zoo Behind the Scenes: Giraffe House
  • February 26, 2017 2:00 pmMembers Only- Zoo Behind the Scenes: Giraffe House
  • March 4, 2017 12:00 pmSummer Camp Open House
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