The Maine Wildlife Park in Gray, will open for the 2017 season on Saturday, April 15 at 9:30 a.m., just in time for the long Patriots Day weekend and school vacation week. Park staff have been working diligently to remove enough snow so paths will be clear, most wildlife exhibits will be open, and the parking lot and access road will be passable. While the turtle ponds may still be frozen over and the nature trails may not yet be walkable, visitors will be excited to see a new beaver in her pond in the furbearer exhibit.
A variety of new and returning weekend events are planned for the season, beginning Saturday, May 6, with a “Creatures of the Night” display associated with the Park’s newest exhibit featuring nocturnal animals. As the season continues, weekend visitors will have opportunities to practice archery and laser rifle target shooting, meet Game Wardens and Warden authors on Warden Service Day, experience Mr. Drew & His Animals, Too, learn about Portland’s famous International Cryptozoology Museum, and enjoy a night visit with Northern Stars Planetarium. Returning favorites this season will include the Bug Man, New England Mineral Association, Wildlife Encounters, Enchanted Forests, the annual Open House, the annual Pow Wow, chainsaw artists, and popular children’s entertainer Rick Charette. The October Harvest-Fest will be expanded for this season to two full weekend days.
Many Maine families are eager to visit their favorite animals after the long winter, but close to 30,000 followers have “kept in touch” with park happenings during the off-season, “liking” and commenting on photos of park wildlife posted on Facebook.
Owned and operated by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, the Maine Wildlife Park is located at 56 Game Farm Road in Gray. The park is open for admittance daily April 15 through November 11 from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Visitors may stay until 6 p.m. Admission is $7.50 for adults and $5.50 for seniors and kids ages 4 through 12. For more information, call 657-4977 or see www.mainewildlifepark.com.