On April 15 at 10:30 a.m., Roger Williams Park Zoo will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony to commemorate the opening of the new Outback Trail in its Australia exhibit that now allows zoo visitors to get much closer to the kangaroos and wallabies.
The previous gray kangaroo exhibit was very spacious, and the animals often relaxed in the shade at the far end of the enclosure, making it difficult for people to see them from the viewing area. Now, guests can enter a rustic-looking cabin to cross a moat and travel on a roped-off path that runs right through the middle of the exhibit. In addition to the increased accessibility, the kangaroos will now be joined by a number of their smaller Bennett’s wallaby cousins. These marsupial animals are smaller than the kangaroos but larger than the Parma wallabies visitors have seen at the zoo before. Also visible from the trail are the zoo’s emus and laughing kookaburra birds, which are both in enclosed spaces on opposite ends of the exhibit.
The exhibits overhaul came as a result of Executive Director Jeremy Goodman’s goal to enhance the zoo experience for all patrons.
“We are always looking for ways to make our guests visits more exciting,” he said. “The Outback Trail is just one example of the many new activities that we have planned for the zoo this season.”
The Outback Trail will be open to the public year round during normal zoo hours, and is free with zoo admission. The zoo is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. April through September, and until 4 p.m. in the off-season. Last admission is 30 minutes before closing. Admission is $14.95 for adults, $9.95 for children (ages 3-12) and $12.95 for seniors (ages 62+). Children under three and zoo members get in free.