Opinion Columns & Blogs

The elephants are coming

Congratulations to the Sedgwick County Zoological Society for wrapping up the $10.6 million fundraising campaign for a new Elephants of the Zambezi River Valley exhibit, which is scheduled to open next May. The urgent effort was necessitated by an Association of Zoos and Aquariums decree that zoos with elephants have at least three females, two males or three elephants of mixed gender. Aided by the Sedgwick County Commission’s gift of $5.3 million and help from nearly 700 donors, the successful campaign means more elephants will be coming to the Sedgwick County Zoo, which has had two since 1972 and lost its beloved Cinda last November. “The community did this,” zoo director Mark Reed said Wednesday. But it stepped up because of its love for the zoo and for elephants. The new exhibit will ensure that the Sedgwick County Zoo not only presents elephants for the long term but has a strong, exciting role in their conservation and breeding. Well done. – Rhonda Holman