Zoo Wish List

Help make our wishes come true! 

Select an item from the list below, purchase the item and drop it off at the Zoo and the Zoo staff will make sure your favorite animal gets a great new form of enrichment. Need more help on what to purchase or have a different item in mind? Email us to ask if something is appropriate for the animals.

Check out our wishlist on Amazon.com HERE for even more donation ideas!


Things around the house – new or gently used
• Cardboard tubes – paper towel, toilet paper, wrapping paper
• Boxes
• Tupperware
• Newspaper
• Phonebooks
• Paper bags
• Perfume/Cologne
• Radios
• TVs with built in DVD/VHS player
• Linens – sheets, pillowcases, t-shirts, socks
• Blankets
• Towels/washcloths
• DVDs – nature or kids
• Metal baking pans
• Pots and pans
• Spoons
• Buckets
• Sports balls
• Toddler toys – indoor/outdoor

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New items you can donate
• Reptile hides/houses
• Jolly Brand Toys
• Large and small parrot toys
• Cuttlebones
• Non-toxic finger paint
• Sidewalk chalk
• Diving pool toys
• Kong toys
• Nature CDs
• Mirrors
• Metal bells
• Paper bags
• Yard waste bags
• Blankets
• Sports balls
• Catnip spray
• Bubbles
• Carabiners
• Zip ties
• Cotton mop heads
• Toddler toys – indoor/outdoor









Food Items you can donate
• Animal crackers
• Peanut butter
• Nuts in shell – unsalted, raw
• Herbs and spices
• Cooking extracts
• Food coloring
• Kool-aid – sugar free
• Gelatin – sugar-free
• Uncooked pasta
• Popcorn kernels – plain
• Horse treats
• Sunflower seeds

   Questions about possible donations for enrichment? Contact mia@saginawzoo.com


What is enrichment?

e3Enrichment is the fun toys, treats, and puzzles that we give to our animal friends to promote natural behaviors! Did you know that our passionate animal care staff provides enrichment to all of our animal friends every day? Enrichment helps keep the animals mentally sharp, physically healthy, and emotionally happy. Some examples of the behaviors our animal care staff like to promote are: foraging for food, solving puzzles, training behaviors for medical examinations, and encouraging play time!


How can you help enrich the animals?

As a not-for-profit, we rely on and appreciate any donations made to us by our wonderfully supportive community! Some items we use daily are things you can recycle in your own home! Cardboard tubes, cardboard boxes, newspaper, and gently used sheets and towels are just some of the items we can put to good use here at the Zoo.

Please see a full list of items here.

The animals are generally rough and tough with the items they receive as enrichment. Due to the wear and tear a beak, claws, teeth and hooves can do, we are constantly replacing toys like boomer balls, bird toys, and puzzle feeders. Get them shipped right to the Zoo! We have all kinds of enrichment items that our animals LOVE on our Amazon Wish List.

We always appreciate any form of donation for the animals and the people that take care of them. Learn how to donate here.


*All donations can be dropped off at the admissions gate any day of the week from 10am-4:30pm, or Monday-Friday 10am-4pm when closed for the season.
*If you would like to send us your enrichment donations, please address to: Children’s Zoo at Celebration Square, 1730 S. Washington Ave, Saginaw, MI 48601, ATTN: AC DEPT
*All donations are tax deductible. Please see our gifts-in-kind form here.



Help us stay on the right track!

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Choo-choo! All aboard the party train as we celebrate the Train’s 50th anniversary!

We believe that the Zoo is a family fun destination for everyone, which is why we are asking the community to help us stay on the right track!


Our goal is to raise funds to get us to Station 1 on our Train’s journey by September 2017. These funds will be used for:

  • Lowering the track
  • New ADA passenger car (or ADA modifications for 2 coaches)  
  • Modifications at the Depot
    • Modify/expand loading platform
    • ADA compliance upgrades/corralling modifications


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Station 2’s GOAL is to have the remaining funds raised by March 2018, which will be used for:

  • Train tunnel/shop addition & track spur
  • Bridge repair/maintenance work


These changes will allow new opportunities for people with disabilities, as well as senior citizens who have difficulty climbing in and out of the train. Interested in being a part of history?

Train Car 2017 Donate

The Iberschoff Special is a cornerstone of the Great Lakes Bay Region community. Last year, the Train had almost 72,000 riders! With your help, we are hoping that number will be much larger when the fully accessible Train is revealed. With every visit, membership, or donation, YOU are helping to ensure that everyone has a WILD adventure!

If you would prefer an offline contribution, please:

Make a check payable to “Children’s Zoo.” On the memo line of the check, please indicate that the donation is for “Train 2017.” Please mail your check to:

Children’s Zoo at Celebration Square
1730 S. Washington Ave.
Saginaw, MI 48601

More about the Train:

In January, 1967, the Saginaw Children’s Zoo introduced a new attraction: a miniature train. This brand new train was purchased from the Allan Herschell Company and is known as the "Iron Horse." The Iron Horse is designed to carry a larger number of passengers per trip than prior park trains. This purchase was made possible by Dr. Carl H. Iberschoff, a Saginaw school teacher, who left the money to the city of Saginaw for improvement of parks and playgrounds. The train is affectionately called the Iberschoff Special, in memory of Dr. Iberschoff's generosity. Click here to learn more about the Train's history!


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The animals are currently working on their master pieces come back soon!

Children’s Zoo excited to announce two new residents: Mexican wolves!


The Saginaw Children’s Zoo at Celebration Square is howling with excitement as two new Mexican wolves have moved into the wolf exhibit. Thanks to the generous support from the Zoo’s community, the Great Lakes Bay Region can now play a big part in bringing nature and children together!

One-and-a-half-year-old sisters Izzy and Rachel made their way to Saginaw from the Endangered Wolf Center in Missouri. Rachel is a little bit smaller than her sister, Izzy, and lighter in color. They are both a little shy, spending much of their time hiding behind the trees of their exhibit. However, with each passing day, they seem to be getting more and more comfortable in their new home. MexicanWolf web1 

“I want to express my appreciation to everyone in our community who helped us bring these majestic wolves to our Zoo,” said Executive Director Nancy Parker. The Children’s Zoo would like to thank all of the people who helped them raise enough funds to spruce up the exhibit and cover the cost of transporting the wolves. Hundreds of people donated to help make this possible, and now children of all ages will be able to see these beautiful animals for many years to come!

The Mexican grey wolf is a subspecies of the grey wolf. Commonly referred to as "El lobo," this wolf is grey with light brown fur on its back. Though they once numbered in the thousands, these wolves were wiped out in the U.S. by the mid-1970s, with just a handful existing in zoos. Although their numbers have grown slowly due to conservation efforts, they remain the most endangered subspecies of wolf in the world. Because of the support from the Zoo's community, students from schools all across the area will have an opportunity to study such a rare and magnificent animal.

**All animal information is meant to be an educational resource. It may not include all the latest scientific information. Though we edit our information we cannot guarantee the accuracy of all facts presented.