support your zoo

Without your support, the Zoo would not be able to provide the Mid-Michigan area with the safe, fun, educational and beautiful experience that it does.

In 1987, the Saginaw Valley Zoological Society formed and took over management of the Zoo from the City of Saginaw in April 1996. The City subsidy ended in 2005. The Children’s Zoo receives no tax support. The Zoo is classified as a non-profit, 501-C3 organization.

The beautiful expansions and capital improvements at the Zoo are possible because of the generous support of local foundations. The care and feeding of the animals at the Zoo and the day-to-day operations are solely funded by Zoo gate admissions and donations.

There are many ways to support the Children’s Zoo.

Memberships to the Zoo are a great way to enjoy the Zoo at tremendous savings while supporting the Zoo's programs and operating.

The Zoo welcomes donations in many forms. General donations, which also includes memory or honorary donations and train and carousel fund donations are a great way to show your support. Donations to the Zoo’s endowment fund are also encouraged, to ensure that the Zoo will be able to provide future generations with family-oriented fun and education.

Corporate donations and event sponsorship donations are also ways to help the Zoo provide the events and programs that are so popular. 

Other ways to support the Children's Zoo include purchasing Engraved Bricks, our Adopt-an-Animal program and volunteering at the Zoo. The Zoo also has a Wish List that you can help replenish.

To better secure the future of the Zoo, planned giving through a will, trust, gift annuity or life insurance is another way to be sure the Zoo is here for future generations. Tax benefits apply, so consult your financial planner.

2014 Saginaw Valley Zoological Society Board of Directors 


Elissa Basil
Jennifer Jaffee
Vice Chair
Michael Kelly
Recording Secretary
Tara Girard
Michael Colby
Immediate Past Chairperson
Judy Weldy
Board Advisor


Board Members

Dave Case

Julie Kozan 
Andy Friend  Carol Lechel 
Sherrie Fritze-Harris  Mary Sue Markey 
Carrie Houtman Kevin Shultz
Clay Johnson  Sandra Worner 


Executive Director
Nancy Parker



The Children's Zoo at Celebration Square 

This Release and Waiver of Liability is executed by the Volunteer, parent or guardian, in favor of the Saginaw Valley Zoological Society, operating as Children’s Zoo at Celebration Square, a nonprofit corporation ("Zoo"), its directors, officers, employees, and agents.

The Volunteer desires to participate in the Zoo’s volunteer programs and activities. The Volunteer understands their participation may include a variety of activities required in operating the Zoo.

The Volunteer does hereby freely, voluntarily, and without duress execute this Release under the following terms:

1. Waiver and Release. The Volunteer does hereby release and forever discharge and hold harmless the Zoo and its successors and assigns from any and all liability, claims and demands of whatever kind or nature, either in law or in equity, which arise or may here after arise from Volunteer participation in any Zoo programs.

2. Medical Treatment. The Volunteer does hereby release and forever discharge the Zoo from any claim whatsoever which arises or may hereafter arise on account of any first aid, treatment, or service rendered in connection with the Volunteer’s participation in any Zoo programs.

3. Assumption of Risk. The Volunteer hereby expressly and specifically assumes the risk of injury or harm in these activities and releases the Zoo from all liability for injury, illness death, or property damage resulting from the activities of the Volunteer’s participation in the Zoo’s programs.

4. Insurance. Each Volunteer is expected and encouraged to have medical or health insurance coverage.

5. Photographic Release. The Volunteer does hereby grant and convey unto the Zoo all right, title, and interest in any and all photographic images and video or audio recordings made by the Zoo during any programs or volunteer activities, including, but not limited to, any royalties, proceeds, or other benefits derived from such photographs or recordings.

6. Other. Volunteer expressly agrees that this Release is intended to be as broad and inclusive as permitted by the laws of the State of Michigan and that this Release shall be governed by and interpreted in accordance with the laws of the state of Michigan. The volunteer agrees that in the event that any clause or provision of this Release shall be held to be invalid by any court of competent jurisdiction, the invalidity of such clause or provision shall not otherwise affect the remaining provisions of this Release which shall continue to be enforceable.

In witness whereof, the Volunteer has executed this Release on this date _______________.


_______________________________                 _______________________________ 

Witness                                                                  Volunteer


                                                                               Parent/Guardian (if under 18)

Copy to come.

Name___________________________________________  Date____________

Street Address__________________________________ City & State____________________Zip__________

Home Phone__________________Other Phone_______________ E-mail address ________________________

Age ___ Current Grade _______School__________________________________________________________

T-shirt size: S M L XL 1XL 2XL

Have you previously been a Zoo Crew member?   Yes   No       If yes, when? ________________

Why do you want to participate in the Zoo Crew Program? ____________________________________________



Have you ever been convicted for violation of any federal, state, county, or municipal law, regulation, or ordinance? Yes   No

In case of emergency, whom should we contact?

Name______________________________ Relationship___________________

Home Phone ____________ Cell Phone________________ Work Phone_________________

I have read and agree to the Zoo Crew Volunteer program requirements:

Zoo Crew Volunteer Signature___________________________________

Parent or Guardian Approval ____________________________________

Teacher or Other Recommendations Required:

I recommend this student into the ZOO Crew Program.

Name & School/Organization (please print)_____________________________________________________

Signature___________________________________ Phone______________________

Name & School/Organization (please print)_____________________________________________________
Signature___________________________________ Phone______________________

Submit application to:

Children's Zoo at Celebration Square
1730 S. Washington Avenue
Saginaw, MI 48601
Phone: 989 759-1408
Fax: 989 759 1328

Applicants will be notified upon acceptance into the program.

Cebus capucinusCapuchin


  • Cebidae


  • Wild: 12 to 25 years
  • Captivity: Up to 47 years


  • Length: 11 to 20 inch body, with a 12 to 20 inch tail.
  • Weight: About 3 to 11 pounds.
    • Males are slightly larger than females.


  • Colombia, Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama


  • Main canopy levels in evergreen rainforests, mangroves, deciduous dry forest.


  • Capuchins are omnivorous (eats both plant and animal matter, primarily fruits and insects), diurnal (active during the day), and are primarily arboreal (spending most of their time in trees).
  • Capuchins move quadrupedally, or by using four limbs.


  • Wild: Fruits, nuts, leaves, insects, birds, lizards, eggs, and small mammals like nesting coatis.
  • Zoo: New World Primate biscuits, fruits and vegetables.


  • Capuchins have a polygamous mating system.
  • Gestation lasts around 157 to 167 days.
  • Females give birth to a single young which will cling to its mother from birth. 
  • Young are weaned by the age of 12 months and young males leave their birthplace as early as two years old. 
  • Males do not share in childcare. White-throated Capuchins

Unique Characteristics

  • Capuchins travel in an ordered, single line through the treetops.
  • They communicate vocally, through facial expression, and through grooming.
  • They can swim rather well.
  • They have a poor sense of smell and use urine-washing (rubbing urine on hands and feet) to mark territory.

Special Adaptations

  • Capuchins have an opposable thumb and big toe, as well as a partially prehensile tail.
  • The molars are square shaped with thick enamel to help crack nuts.
  • They have the most highly developed brain of the New World monkeys, and have been observed using weapons, tools, and problem-solving skills to adapt to their changing environment.

What’s in a Name

  • Capuchins have a tuft of hair on their head similar to a capuche worn by Franciscan monks, hence their name.
  • They are also known as "ring tails" because the tail is carried with the tip coiled up.

Humans and Capuchins

  • The most famous relationship of man to the capuchin is that of the organ grinder.
  • Capuchins are also used in research due to their intelligence, sometimes even placed with paraplegics to perform tasks. 
    White-throated capuchin

Conservation Status

  • IUCN: Least Concern
  • CITES: Appendix II (trade controlled)
  • Capuchins are prone to habitat loss, as many other species are
  • Importation is now illegal to protect the wild populations.  


  1. CITES Appendices. Accessed December 2012.
  2. IUCN Red List of Endangered Species. Accessed December 2012.
  3. Cebus capucinus (Linnaeus, 1758). Encyclopedia of Life. Accessed December 2012.