ZOOdiac- Lunar New Year celebrations at the LA Zoo!

I had a super fun girls day out on Saturday. My daughters, myself and my Mother all spent our Saturday morning at the LA Zoo. This is definitely one of our favorite places to visit and hang out. This weekend though was special because we were there for ZOOdiac. If you follow me on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, then you know how much fun we had. ZOOdiac was the Los Angeles Zoo's celebration of the upcoming Lunar New Year, The Year of the Horse.  
My girls and I waiting for our lunch at Reggie's Bistro.
My kids LIVE for arts and crafts and thanks to the Pacific Asian Museum in Pasadena, CA we were greeted with a fun craft as soon as we arrived. My girls colored, cut and added hair to a horse, in honor of the Year of the Horse. They also had a story time, courtesy of the Los Angeles Public Library, and the Upside down "Fu" craft. 

The best part of ZOOdiac for us was definitely the scavenger hunt. It was fun for the girls to follow the map, find all of the animals that were being highlighted and get a stamp.  
We finished the scavenger hunt and returned to get our prize, a reusable bag from Miffy. We could always use those! As you can see in this picture, we had a great time, and went home with little souvenirs and keepsakes. My mom always insists on buying the pictures that the Zoo takes when you are first walking in. 

Check out the video I posted to Instagram of the Chinese Dragon dance. 

It was such a beautiful day in Los Angeles, and really almost any day of the year is perfect for the LA Zoo. In Southern California, we are pretty spoiled with fantastic weather. 
Every time we visit the zoo, I like to take pictures with something new or a different animal. This time, we got a picture of the Monitors, the Warty Pigs, and the Zebras. I wonder which animals we will learn about the next time we visit? Stay tuned!

Upcoming Lunar New Year Celebrations

I try to expose my children to as much culture that Southern California has to offer, and thankfully Los Angeles really is just a big ol' melting pot of cultures. There is always something interesting going on and with the Lunar New Year approaching I wanted to share some fun events happening around Los Angeles.

Zoodiac- Celebration for the Lunar New Year
First of all, one of our favorite places to visit, the L.A. Zoo has a super fun event "Zoodiac" the L.A. Zoo's celebration for Lunar New Year, happening on Saturday, Jan. 25 and Sunday Jan. 26 from 10 AM to 4PM. To celebrate the traditional Lunar New Year, the Los Angeles Zoo invites visitors to experience “ZOOdiac,” the zoo’s annual festival of the animals of the Chinese Zodiac, with food, music, dancing, and special animal enrichment activities.

Festivities will include a ZOOdiac scavenger hunt, food, music, dragon and lion dances, acrobats, Kung Fu
demonstrations, and crafts. Interesting facts about the animals featured in the ZOOdiac celebration will be shared at the animals’ exhibits. In honor of 2014 being the Year of the Horse, there will be keeper talks and enrichments will be presented for animals related to the horse, including the Zebra, Rhino, and Tapir. 

The twelve zoo animals being featured in the celebration include:
· Rat: Panay Cloud Rat
· Dragon: Komodo Dragon
· Tiger: Sumatran Tiger
· Rabbit: Domestic Rabbit
· Ox: Lowland Anoa
· Snake: Mangshan Pit Viper
· Horse: Zebra
· Goat: Chinese Goral
· Monkey: Francois' Langur
· Rooster: Common Peafowl
· Dog: African Wild Dog
· Pig: Visayan Warty Pig

And for your consideration, here is a schedule of events:
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.– Crafts
11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. – ZOOdiac Scavenger Hunt and Food Stands
11:00 a.m.– Rhino Keeper Talk and enrichment
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.– Traditional Chinese Music and Acrobat
12:30 – 12:45 p.m.– Dragon Dance
1:00 p.m.– Zebra Keeper Talk and enrichment
1:30 – 2:30 p.m.– Lion Dance and Traditional Chinese Dance
3:00 p.m.– Tapir Keeper Talk
3:00 – 3:30 p.m.– Kung Fu Demo

All activities are free to GLAZA members and included with paid Zoo admission, which is $18 for adults
(ages 13 and up); $15 for seniors (age 62 and up); $13 for children (ages 2 to 12); and free for children
under 2. Saturday, January 25 and Sunday, January 26, 10 am to 4 pm, Los Angeles Zoo.

Other Lunar New Year Celebrations and Festivals around Los Angeles
I love that the Lunar New Year is a month long celebration around Southern California. Here are some other local celebrations and festivals going on around town that we hope to check out. (Click the links for more info)

January 18- Lunar New Year Festival at the Pacific Asia Museum (Pasadena, CA)
February 1-2- Chinese New Year Celebration in China Town features the 115th Golden Dragon Parade (Saturday at 1 P.M Downtown.)
February 8- 23rd Annual Lunar New Year Celebration (Alhambra, CA)