OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Officials with Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium say the attraction is facing a nearly $7 million loss as its doors close to the public in the wake of a global pandemic.
The zoo's closure on March 16 through the end of April is projected to amount to a $6.7 million loss for the zoo, the Omaha World-Herald reported Monday. An estimated 79,300 visitors were expected between March 16 and March 31, and another 155,800 visitors were expected in April. The zoo had expected a bump in visitors as it made plans to celebrate its 125th anniversary.
The zoo's Lee G. Simmons Wildlife Safari Park in Ashland - a drive-thru attraction that plans to remain open - appears to have seen a hike in attendance from the Omaha zoo's closure. The Wildlife Safari Park opened for the 2020 season on March 27, with a record-setting attendance of 7,663 visitors. The previous record was 2,735 on Sept. 1, 2019.
Park pricing ranges from $4 for children to $6 for adults. Children 2 and under are admitted at no charge. Those with season tickets to the zoo will have those tickets honored at the wildlife park.