The Chattanooga Zoo celebrated its 75th anniversary with the 12th annual Banana Ball. Featuring special guest Jack Hanna, live music, complimentary cigar bar and desert décor, the Chattanooga Zoo was transformed into a wonderland oasis. Attendees were also given a sneak preview of the newly opened Deserts of the World exhibit.
Zoo supporters witnessed a donation of $90,000 to the Chattanooga Zoo from MAPCO Express, Inc. “Working through the Delek Fund for Hope, we were excited all 94 of our stores were able to participate with our customers and Coca-Cola to support such a important community asset as the Chattanooga Zoo”, said Sam Picone, Chattanooga division manager of MAPCO Express, Inc. “Our MAPCO Mart, Fast Food & Fuel, Delta Express and Favorite Markets stores are a part of the Chattanooga and North GA community, and giving back to the area we serve is very important to us.”
For the first year ever, the Banana Ball did not partake in a silent or live auction but rather allowed guests to “adopt” signature Zoo animals. Banana Ball Committee Chairs, Clay and Gina Crumbliss remark, “We believe that it was a benefit to the guests not to have an auction because they had all evening to view the boards, tour the Zoo, pet some animals and become enamored with the Zoo without feeling pressured to spend money or outbid other guests. Whether adopting the animal for a day, a week, a month or even a year, guests were given the opportunity to directly contribute to the care of a particular animal.” For more information on how to adopt an animal, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ticket sales and monies raised through animal adoptions resulted in the Zoo raising $75,000 for its programmatic and expansion efforts.