This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on December 19, 2003 12:55 AM. The previous post in this blog was Oh, honey, where's that beret?. The next post in this blog is I think I was behind him in the Hood to Coast once. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, December 19, 2003

Bright idea

My daughter and I went up to the Oregon Zoo in Washington Park the other evening to see the zoo's annual Zoolights festival. It was fun, albeit mildly so.

The zookeepers have figured out a great way to boost attendance and make something out of the dark days of December -- come nightfall, they flip the switch on hundreds of colorful outdoor light displays depicting wild animals and holiday themes. If you're a fan of animated light shows (and who isn't this time of year), it's pretty impressive.

Setting the festival in the zoo is a little odd, however. There are very few real animals in view, and the ones who are around look more forlorn than ever. Only the bats seemed to be grooving on all the winter nights' company. And the way most of the lights are laid out, the impression you get when you first see each display from a distance fades as the path brings you closer to it. As a result, most of the impact of each scene fizzles a bit before the display leaves your view.

Up on the hill, the zoo is exposed to some pretty brisk breezes this time of year. After a while, you just get cold. Now, with a layer of snow on the ground, that would be fantastic, but without it, the chill puts an uncomfortable little edge on the stroll.

I'm a zoo fan, I'm glad we made the trip, and we'll likely return in a couple-three years. (We skipped the train and the thrill ride; next time we'll hit them both.) If you've never been to Zoolights, you should see it at least once. But don't beat yourself up if it takes you a while to get around to it.

Comments (1)

Boy howdy, it sure has been cold up there. I've been at the Artist's Market and everyone who comes in looks so cold. The hat lady has made more money than anyone else (fleece hats)... I think she found the winning formula :) It's amazing how many times I hear "Oh good, I forgot my hat tonight!"

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