BALTIMORE STANDING TOGETHER: WJZ, The Baltimore Sun & the University of Baltimore will hold town hall meetings to talk about the issues our city is facing. City leaders will share their plans & answer your questions. Be Heard Baltimore. CLICK HERE to contact us with your questions.

WASHINGTON (WJZ) — The National Zoo in Washington is back open, and fans couldn’t be happier. The government shutdown forced the zoo to close its doors.

But now, Kai Jackson reports, animal lovers couldn’t be more excited.

“We have missed you so much!” said Dennis Kelly, National Zoo Director.

And patrons of the National Zoo in Washington D.C. have missed visiting.

The government shutdown closed the popular tourist spot for 17 days. But now they’ve reopened for business.

“It’s a very difficult thing to see happen, to see anything that you love being a part of to be shut down. But we’re definitely happy that it’s open and we’re happy that it’s been resolved somewhat,” a zoo visitor said.

Visitors were going wild not having the opportunity to see the wide variety of animals at the zoo. The staff says that sadness worked both ways.

“I’m sure they felt the quiet. There was nobody here during the daytime. I mean, we had wolves howling during the daytime. They normally save that for the nighttime,” said Don Moore, Associate Director of Animal Care.

“He was begging for the zoo while it was closed. And I’m happy to be off today so I can take him to the zoo and make that wish come true,” said Yianna Tousmia, parent.

“The animals have missed you. The people have missed you. We need you back,” Kelly said.

The closing of the zoo was about more than sightseeing. The zoo says it relies on patrons to purchase merchandise. The absence of that for two and a half weeks has hurt the zoo financially.

“So it’s been hard for us. It’s been a financial drain for us, but we’re back in business,” Kelly said.

When they’re open and operating normally, 25,000 people visit the National Zoo each day.

Other Local News:


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More From CBS Baltimore

Track Weather On The Go With Our App!
CBS All Access

Watch & Listen LIVE