Saturday, December 8, 2012

Wild Wonderland at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo

by Meghann on December 8, 2012

It’s beginning to look like Yelp-mas around here!

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This month’s Yelp Elite event brought us to Wild Wonderland at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. For select nights in the month of December, the zoo lights up with over a million twinkling lights for Wild Wonderland. Visitors can take photos with santa, meet a real reindeer, and ride down a 100 ft arctic slide.

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I’d never been to Lowry Park Zoo before, but I heard great things about it and anything with a festive theme is an automatic win in my book. We arrived minutes after the park opened for the Wild Wonderland festivities and couldn’t believe how packed it was. There were families with kids everywhere. I jokingly told Derek we should have borrowed a toddler for the night, we were definitely the kid-free oddballs in the crowd.

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I was immediately impressed with all of the gorgeous lights everywhere. As soon as you walk in you’re hit with bright twinkling lights, a flurry of fake snow, and Christmas music blasting over the loudspeaker – if you weren’t feeling the Christmas spirit before you walked in, then you were definitely feeling it after.

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We oohed and awed at the lights, then headed to the special Yelp “VIP” area for snacks and drinks.

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You can always count on Yelp for free drinks – score!

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We had light apps to snack on with our drinks.

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They were light, but tasty. I went back for seconds on everything (with plans of getting a real meal after the event).

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After we got our drink and grub on, we headed back out to see some of the beautiful winter sights the zoo had to offer.

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Yes, I wore shorts. It was a muggy 80 degrees this evening – where did all that cool weather we enjoyed over Thanksgiving disappear to?!

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So. Much. Fun.

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My only complaint was the heavy crowds – the zoo was PACKED! Good for the zoo, bad for anyone too impatient to wait in long lines for anything. We gave up on a couple of things (including the arctic slide!) because we didn’t want to wait, but the good news is you could skip a lot of those things and still have a great time. We entertained ourselves admiring the endless light displays and saying hello to the animals. If you have kids, Wild Wonderland would definitely be a win. There’s a fun game area they an hang out in and there’s never an age limit on admiring the magic of twinkling lights!

Thank you Yelp and Lowy Park Zoo for getting us in the holiday spirit tonight!

We made a late night pit-stop at Taco Bus for tacos after our Wild Wonderland adventures.

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I ordered the pollo verde taco and stole some bites of Derek’s burrito. Taco Bus ROCKS!

Are you heading to any holiday themed events this month?

{ 17 comments }

No Pressure Saturday

December 8, 2012

awww… I love relaxing, no-pressure Saturday mornings. It was exactly the type of Saturday morning I needed after a crazy couple of weeks. One of the perks of being in the off-season (aka not currently training for any upcoming races) is there’s really no pressure for fitting in long runs on the weekend. I love more ยป

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