Mommy Vegas Idea #12
Camels, and Monkeys, and Wallabies, OH MY!
Ever wish you could have a pet monkey, or maybe a few kangaroos in the backyard? I sure have, and then I think about the mess… and being that my child labor force is small, both in numbers, and stature, I realize it would be ME… or rather, some anonymous gnome who would get saddled with keep things inhabitable… and think better of it!
But seriously, wouldn’t it be great to have all sorts of awesome critters in the backyard? Well, if it doesn’t have to be YOUR backyard, you could!
This isn’t your typical backyard, and these aren’t your typical pet owners. The Holt Family of Moapa Valley has collected over 150 beautiful animals to share with us, the general public, at their non-profit Roos-N-More Zoo. The best part, you can feed them, observe them, and even snuggle a few, for only around $10 a person (at the time of posting)! Ok, maybe that’s not the best part… you can do all those things, AND not have to clean up after them, for only around $10 a person! If you DO want to clean up after them, that’s free; ask about volunteering! 🙂
The habitats are well kept, the people and animals are ever so pleasant (those that are allowed to mingle any way… this could apply to the people too, but we’re of no authority on that! :), and the experience is unobtainable anywhere else in Southern Nevada. In fact, on the heels of the Las Vegas Zoo’s closure a few weeks ago, you’d have to travel about 300 miles just to smell another binturong, hold a lemur, follow an African spurred tortoise, stare down an eagle owl, hold hands with a capuchin monkey, chat with a cotton-top tamarind, see a cavy, feed a kangaroo or watch a sleeping fennec fox (just to name a few).
|shhh…. don’t wake him….|
|My what big ears you have!|
For some time, this warm-hearted family of veterinarians has opened their home to critters of all sorts, but they also welcome private tours by reservation, special events and parties (also by appointment) and public visitations a few times a month. As they are only open to the public 2 to 3 times a month, we highly recommend checking… and double checking… their website for “Open Zoo Days,” and plan your trip accordingly. Plan to arrive around 9:45 am, as the gates open at 10 am (at the time of posting, so check their website for current hours) and there is quite a line. Also keep in mind that some add-on activities are limited on space, so the earlier the better.
|“Why aren’t we ever open on Hump Day?”|
The zoo is not huge (which we like for the little guys), but fairly diverse and there are not many places you can get so close and “personal” with so many exotic creatures. There isn’t quite as much posted information as I usually like, but it looks like more signage may be in the works. What they lack in printed materials, they make up for in quality manpower. They do a beautiful job keeping plenty of knowledgeable people roving the grounds with critters in hand, answering questions, disseminating knowledge, and guiding animal interactions. If given the choice, I would take the people over signs any day! If you too like the written word, they have a fun little email newsletter you can signup for on their website!
|Don’t worry… they don’t bite… 😉 hard.|
The next opportunity to visit on a public zoo day is Sunday, October 20th, but if you’re looking for a fun Halloween activity, they will be open on October 27th, from 1 – 5 pm, for a special Halloween themed party of sorts, complete with candy, games (rumored to include the animals!), and even a creepy crawly booth featuring some choice arthropoda! In accordance with all the added festivities, the entrance fee will be $15/person for the afternoon.
If you’d rather a more intimate experience with the animals and their handlers, you can reserve the zoo for private parties and educational tours for a very reasonable fee! Visit their website for more information!
Getting the Most Out of Your Visit
- Get there early – They recommend getting there prior to 11:30 am, you’d be hard pressed to see it all before closing time.
- Splurge on the food – There is no outside food, but you can buy some small food packages for the critters at the gates. The animals aren’t slow, they know the difference between and empty hand and a full one. You’ll get the most “love” and better pictures if you don’t come empty handed!
- Bring the Camera 🙂
- Pack a lunch – While you can’t bring food into the park, you’ll likely be hungry either mid-visit, or when when you’re done, and there isn’t a whole lot near by.
- Visit the little house in the center of the property, you’ll not only meet a gorgeous little sloth, but you could hold a monkey or a wallaby joey, or who know what else! There is also a gift shop, and restrooms too!
- Have your money ready at the gate. They do a great job announcing pricing and available add-ons before opening. Figure out how much your admission will be while in line and have your money ready! The line can be quite long, and while they are fairly efficient and keep the line moving, you can help by making your turn to pay a speedy one! The sooner you get in the sooner you can play!
Add-On Experiences: There are several add-on experiences you can purchase at the gate and space is limited, so if you think you may want to try one, be sure to purchase them at the gate.
Walking with the otters is going on right now. There is plenty to see and do without this add-on. But if you have some diehard otter fans, you may want to splurge, otherwise, you’re not likely to see otters at all.
The roo experience add-on is cute, but may not be worth it for most families (particularly bigger familes). You get rather close to the kangaroos, wallabies and cavies just by observing them through the fence, and there are even opportunities to feed and pet them. But if you really want the chance to sit next to a wallaby or really get close, you can pay a few more bucks to enter the enclosure with a guide.
Want to see even more?! Schedule a party or tour! This is truly an unbeatable value!
Moapa Town, NV 89025
|WHOOO wants to visit the Roos-N-More Zoo?|
|Follow me! We’ll be there in no time!
To get there from Vegas:
- Take I-15 Northbound, head out of town towards Mesquite/St. George, Utah.
- Take Exit 90, SR168/Moapa Valley
- Merge onto 168W you’ll soon see “ZOO” signs marking the way.
- Turn right on N Henrie Rd (just after the school).
- Turn right on Isola Dr.
- Then your first left onto Sandy D., continue onto Snowden Ranch Rd. and you’re in the parking area!
|The parking lot fills up pretty quick, so don’t dilly dally too long getting up there!|
Have a great time and let us know about your visit!
|Can you believe they feed zonkey’s live goat? Good, don’t believe that… he just climbed in. I can’t decide which is cooler, the fact that they have a zonkey, or that they have a goat cleaver enough to camp out in the feed trough!|