volunteer

Carousel volunteer

Rides

Drive the famous Zoo train or operate the region’s only hand-carved carousel. Shifts are scheduled in four hour increments, so you won’t have to make a whole day commitment, unless you want to! Full training is provided.  To ensure a safe ride for everyone you must be 18 years of age to operate the rides. 

 

Zoo Store

Kids, candy, toys and smiles are what the Zoo Store is all about! If you enjoy helping kids of all ages satisfy a sweet tooth or find just the right little plush penguin or slithery lizard toy to take home, you’ll enjoy volunteering in the Zoo Store. Whether you have lots of time or just a little bit, we’d love to have your smiling face and helping hands making our visitors happy.

Zoo Store volunteers

Education/Special Events

Be a Zoo Camp counselor or outreach/animal handling volunteer.  Or lend a hand at a Special Event. Whether you have lots of time or just a little bit, the Zoo is the place for you to help our visitors with the complete Zoo experience.

 

Zoo Crew

Please visit the Zoo Crew section of the website for more information on our teen volunteer program!

 

Garden

Garden volunteers assist with general garden area maintenance. Approximately 12 areas have been identified as needing monthly care. This may include weeding general garden beds and pruning back shrubs. Garden volunteer work days are scheduled throughout the season. If a volunteer has been oriented by a member of the Horticulture Committee to the gardens, they may come anytime the Zoo is open to assist with routine garden maintenance care.

Volunteer now!

Release and Waiver of Liability (PDF)

 

Seasonal Employment at the Zoo:

The Children's Zoo is currently seeking qualified applicants for the following positions:

  • Admissions
  • Zoo Store
  • Concessions
  • Grounds
  • Exhibit Educator

Interested applications should fill out the application below and mail to or drop off in person at:

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

Download Job Application (PDF)

 

Volunteer Internships:

Seasonal internships are available in the Animal Collections and Education departments. 

Animal Collection Internships offer the opportunity to gain an understanding of what it takes to maintain a vibrant animal collection in a zoological park setting. Internship positions are considered volunteers.

Animal Collections Internship Posting 2016 (PDF)

Education Internships offer the opportunity to gain an understanding of the various types of programs used to educate the public about the natural world in a Zoological Park setting.  Internship positions are considered volunteers.

Education Internship Posting 2015 (PDF)

Social Media & Communication internship offer the opportunity for an individual to gain experience communicating a business’ mission and vision with the public in an effective and engaging way. Internship positions are considered volunteers.

Social Media & Communications Internship Posting 2016 (PDF)

If you are seeking an internship for a different department, please send a letter briefly describing the type and requirements of the internship to:

Children's Zoo at Celebration Square
Attn: Zoo Internships
1730 S. Washington Ave.
Saginaw, MI 48601

adopt a garden

In 1998, the Adopt-A-Garden program was started under the sponsorship of the Saginaw Valley Zoological Society as a way to beautify the Zoo grounds through volunteer involvement. The Zoo Horticulture Committee was entrusted with recruiting volunteer gardeners and managing the program. They began the first year with 11 gardens. Each year the gardens have grown in number and beauty, and now there are over 80 gardens spreading color and vibrance throughout the Zoo.

Honorable Mention 2012Winner 2012

 

Adopt-A-Gardens are assigned each year when space permits, with returning gardeners given first preference of any new available bed. Gardeners are responsible for providing their own plant material and are expected to maintain the garden for entire Zoo season.

An Adopt-A-Garden requires a weekly commitment to weed, water, fertilize and trim plants to keep the garden looking presentable at all times. Neglected sites give guests at the Zoo the impression that the rest of the Zoo is not well maintained. The Zoo has advised the Horticulture Committee that gardens that appear untended be re-assigned.

Gardeners are responsible for assisting with the fall clean-up of the gardens at the end of the season.

Winner 2012Winner 2012 
 

donations

 

Did you know it costs:

capuchin $760 to feed ALL the animals for just 1 day?

penguin  $500 to have enough fish to feed the Penguins for just 2 months?

wolf  $100 to feeds the Carnivores meat for just 1 week?

boy $50 to cover the cost of Zoo Admission for 10 underpriveleged children?

Click Here to Donate Now

Here are the many ways you can support the Zoo:


General Donations

General donation: your donation will be directed toward day-to-day operating expenses at the Zoo, including animal feeding and care or based on your desgination.

Memorial donation: make a donation in memory of a loved one.

Honorary donation: donate in honor of someone special.

Endowment fund donation: your donation will be held in a permanent fund at the Saginaw Community Foundation to help ensure the future of the Zoo. The interest generated from that fund will be annually distributed to the Zoo and applied toward our greatest needs. 

Train maintenance fund: help keep the cherished train chugging around the track every day.

Celebration Square Carousel fund: your donation will help maintain the beautiful, hand-carved Celebration Square Carousel.

Train RideCelebration Square Carousel

Corporate Donation

Join our Business Partners in supporting the Children's Zoo.

$1,000 Annual Member: receive 200 Zoo Passes, free admission for up to 400 employees and family members on a date of your choice, one day to promote your business or products at the Zoo and name recognition on Zoo Donor Board and in Zoo News.

$500 Season Member: receive 100 Zoo Passes and name recognition in Zoo News.

$250 Partner Member: receive 50 Zoo Passes and name recognition in Zoo News.

 

Event Sponsorship

Your Event Sponsorship will support the popular events the Zoo holds every year including Zoo Boo! These events are a great way to enjoy the Zoo, including train and carousel rides along with a special event at a tremendous savings.

Capuchin skeleton

 

 Donate Now

 
 
Don't forget, we have a Wish List full of items our animals need!
 

Adopt an Animal

Are you interested in helping provide impeccable care for your animal friends at the Zoo? Then become a proud parent of a Children’s Zoo animal today! By symbolically adopting an animal of your choice, you’re not only helping with the care and feeding of that animal for a full year, but you are also supporting our many education and conservation programs.

Here’s what you will receive:

 

Advocate $35 Guardian $60 Protector $100

Adoption Certificate          
Fact Sheet
5x7 Animal Photo

 

Adoption Certificate
Fact Sheet
5x7 Animal Photo
Animal Plush
2 tickets to the Children's Zoo

Adoption Certificate
Fact Sheet
5x7 Animal Photo
Animal Plush
6 tickets to the Children's Zoo

 

Adopt Here!

 Please note that there are a few animals that, while they can be adopted, do not have matching plush toys.
These animals are: American crow, Campbell duck, emu, red-tailed hawk, ring-necked dove, sugar glider, black-footed cats, and turkey vulture. If you would like to adopt one of these animals, we can include any other animal plush toys in your package. Thank you!

Frequently Asked Questions

Which animals are available for adoption?

Any of the animals you have met at the zoo are available! For a list of possible animals see our Animal Encounters page.

Do I actually get to take the animal home with me?

Unfortunately, the animals have to remain at the Zoo. This is where all of their favorite toys, snacks, and highly trained caretakers are, after all! While the Adopt-an-Animal program is symbolic and the animal will remain at the Children’s Zoo, the results of your support are real. (Plus, wild animals make lousy roommates.)

Will anyone else adopt this animal?

We sure hope so! It takes more than one adoption to feed and care for an animal all year. All adoptions support the care and feeding of the animal residents at the Children’s Zoo.

Can I name my adopted animal?

All your Zoo friends have names that they love, and we are more than happy to add it to your certificate upon request! Of course, you are welcome to give your adopted animal a different, unofficial name in your own household.

How quickly will my Adopt package arrive?

Adoption packages usually arrive within 10 business days. Please let us know if you have a rush situation and we will do our best to accommodate you!

May I Adopt onsite at the Zoo?

To make the adoption process easier for everyone, we currently only have this program available online or by phone.

How long does my adoption last?

Each adoption lasts for one full year! When your year is up, you may renew your adoption online or over the phone. Your adopted animal would greatly appreciate your continued support!

Can you tell me more about the plush animal I will receive?

The plush animals are high-quality plush, and will match as closely as possible the animal you adopt. These extra soft, huggable, and squeezable plush toys are GREAT for gift giving! Sometimes it is not possible to get the exact species. If you have any questions feel free to email at the link provided below.

Who can I contact if I have further questions?

We would love to answer any more of your questions, or get you started on the adoption process. Please contact Syndi Thayer at syndi@saginawzoo.com, or give us a call at (989) 759-1408.

Zoo Family Classes 

Bring your family and check out the Zoo in a whole new way. On select Saturdays this winter, the Zoo will hold Zoo Family Classes in our new Conservation Classroom. 

Workshop

  • Price - $25 for two people, $10 for each additional person.
    • Woo at the Zoo - $50 per couple
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult
    • (suggested ages are listed for each program)
  • Programs are 2 hours from 1 - 3 pm on Saturday.
    • Woo at the Zoo - 5 - 7:30 pm
  • Pre-Registration is required.
  • Payment is due at the time of registration.

Schedule for Winter 2009

  • November 14th – Enrichment Extravaganza
  • December 5th – What Goes Around Comes Around – History from the Carousel 
  • December 12th – Delicious Diets

Schedule for Winter 2010

  • January 23rd – Enrichment Extravaganza
  • February 13th – Woo at the Zoo – 5:30 - 7:30 pm
  • February 27th – What Goes Around Comes Around – History from the Carousel
  • March 13th – Delicious Diets 
  • March 27th – Enrichment Extravaganza 
  • April 10th – What Goes Around Comes Around – History from the Carousel

Descriptions:

Enrichment Extravaganza (5 years and older)

What keeps the animals at the Zoo busy? Find out all about environmental enrichment in this exciting class. Learn about the types of enrichment and why it is so important to animals here at the Children’s Zoo. Then you will get to try your hand at making exciting enrichment for selected Zoo animals. To end the class, watch our animals tear apart and destroy all your hard work!  

What Goes Around Comes Around – History from the Carousel (8 years and older)

This informative, fun and history-filled class will present the history of Saginaw from a totally unique perspective – the Celebration Square Carousel at the Children’s Zoo! Using the actual paintings and carvings from our carousel, the history of Saginaw will unfold before your eyes in living color. These exquisite paintings and carvings will make old Saginaw come to life in ways no written history can match. You will spend some time in the Conservation Classroom learning about the historic events that inspired the drawings and carvings of the carousel. Then get a chance to see the carousel up close and really examine its beauty, and take a ride on all the history. There may even be a few friends to visit your class.  

Delicious Diets (8 years and older)

Ever wonder what the Zoo keepers feed all the animals at the Zoo? Find out how important nutrition is and be amazed by how much work goes into feeding the Zoo animals. Just like humans, keepers have to watch what the animals eat. Some time will be spent in the Conservation Classroom learning how important nutrition is, and how we develop the diets at the Zoo. Then get a tour of our Commissary where all the animal diets are made. You'lll get a peek into our freezers and you will be surprised at what you find: there is no ice cream here. You may even get an opportunity to feed one of our Zoo animals!

Woo at the Zoo (18 years and older) – 5:00 – 7:30 pm

Bring your sweetheart to the Zoo for a special Valentine’s Day class. Learn all about the art of attraction in the animal world. See how birds and other animals pick that special someone. Dinner of sandwiches and salad will be served at 5 p.m., with talk starting at 6 p.m. Fee for this class is $50 per couple. Call the Zoo for more details on this special class.