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Cheyenne Mountain Zoo lights up for the holidays with Electric Safari

December 6, 2017 Updated: December 6, 2017 at 11:01 am
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Electric Safari at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo will be open nightly from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. from Dec. 9-23; and 25-Jan. 1.

If taking in the holiday lights is one of your favorite parts of the season, you won't want to miss the display at the zoo on the mountain. Cheyenne Mountain Zoo again is taking holiday decorating up a notch with its Electric Safari, open 20 nights in December starting Friday.

The zoo decorates its 50 acres with 85 animal light sculptures, opens select animal exhibits, runs its Sky Ride ski lift for spectacular viewing of the city, and invites Santa to stop by each night.

"It's probably one of my favorite times of the year to visit the zoo," said zoo Marketing Director Jenny Koch. "It has the ability to put people into the holiday spirit if they're not there already. It's a really magical way to see the zoo.

"The only requirement is bundling up on a cold night."

Warming fires are set up throughout the zoo to help guests stay toasty, and hot and adult beverages are available for purchase. The Grizzly Grill will be open for dinner.

Many zoo exhibits are open during the event. Outdoors, you may catch a glimpse of animals that don't mind the winter weather, such as the moose, mountain lions, Amur tiger, snow leopards and Canada lynx.

"And if you haven't seen the inside of our elephant barn, it's really cool and houses our rhino and six elephants. Other indoor animals include our giraffes," Koch said.

While Electric Safari has become a holiday tradition for a lot of Pikes Peak region families, she said, "It's also a great date night. It's a nice romantic setting to walk through. It's not super brightly lit because part of the ambiance is the holiday lights. We really want the holiday lights to really shine. There are plenty of lights to see by as you to walk."

All of the animal light sculptures are one of a kind, created by the zoo staff.

"We create the fabrication. We try to unveil a new one every year. This year is a rhino trying to tip over a Jeep, and it will be animated next to the Jeep," Koch said. "You'll only see them here at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo."

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