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Do you have questions about our school and group programs? Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive.  If the answer to your question isn’t listed here, please refer to the Teacher Information Packages for Schools and Groups for additional information.

Additionally, you can contact the school and group bookings office by phone (780-442-1442) or email (cmsschoolbookings@edmonton.ca), and we will be happy to answer your questions!

What happens if I need to be on the bus at or before my program is scheduled to end?
Please let your interpreter know prior to or at the start of the program when you need to be on the bus, so that s/he will leave enough time to walk the children back to the front gate.
What happens if we arrive late?
Your program will start when you arrive at the Zoo, and will end at the scheduled end time indicated on your booking confirmation sheet.
Do your programs automatically include time for a snack and/or bathroom break?
No, they do not. If you would like to ensure that your group has enough time for a break mid-program, you can include this information at the time of booking. When you receive a call from your interpreter prior to your program to confirm program details, you can discuss the inclusion of a break time with him/her. Schools and groups are responsible for providing their own food and beverages for snack time.
What happens if the weather is poor the morning of my program and I want to cancel/re-schedule?
Our programs run rain or shine. We do not automatically cancel any of our on-site programs due to weather. If you want to cancel and/or re-schedule your program, please refer to the Program Cancellation policy section. You will need to call the number listed in the above section to officially cancel and/or re-schedule your program. Cancellation fees may apply. Even if you have already talked to your interpreter prior to the program and have expressed interest in cancelling/re-scheduling, you need to formally request a change to your program booking through the bookings office.
We will already be at the Zoo for a self-guided tour in the morning before the start of our afternoon program. Where should we meet our interpreter?
The default meeting location for all programs is at the front gate of the Zoo. If you would like to arrange an alternate meeting location within the Zoo (i.e., at the Saito Centre or in front of the Administration Building), please mention this at the time of booking or discuss this with your interpreter when s/he calls to confirm your program.
We are staying at the zoo for lunch. Are there food services on-site?

There are beverage and snack vending machines, a change machine, and an ATM year-round in the Saito Centre. You can also visit the Wild Earth Café in the front entry plaza year-round. During summer operations, there is also an open-air concession that sells items including burgers, hot dogs, fries, muffins, popcorn, cotton candy, and hot and cold beverages. We recommend that groups bring their own food or order food to be brought to the Zoo to avoid line-ups at the concession and vending machines.

Please call 311 (outside of Edmonton: 780-442-5311) or visit our website for hours of operation, winter/summer season dates, and for other questions about on-site services at the Edmonton Valley Zoo.

For more information, see all of our Guest Services.

Please Note: There is limited space at the Zoo for lunch. Our program spaces are needed for scheduled programs morning and afternoon. Other spaces (indoor and outdoor) are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. You are welcome to have your students bring their lunches and eat in any of the public spaces, but please help to keep our facility clean by tidying up after your group and ensuring all garbage and recycling is placed into the appropriate containers on-site.

We are staying at the Zoo for whole day. Is there a space for us to leave our belongings/lunch totes/etc.?
We recommend that all participants bring their own backpacks or totes and keep these with them at all times. Our program spaces are needed for programs morning and afternoon, and do not have lockable storage areas. The Edmonton Valley Zoo is not responsible for any lost or stolen items left in any area that is accessible to the public.
Can I rent the Program Tent or a BBQ for our group to have lunch on-site?

Propane BBQ units are not permitted on-site, but you can rent one of the program tents for lunch. To reserve a sheltered site for lunch, please call 780-496-2601 or email specialmoments@edmonton.ca

There are some children with special needs or allergies in my class/group. Can these be accommodated?

As much as possible, we will do our best to accommodate your class' needs. Please mention any special needs or allergies to a booking agent over the phone, by email, or through the online request form when you are booking your program, so that your interpreter is prepared for your class. If you have any questions about needs specific to your group, our booking agents would be happy to answer your questions.

Please Note: The Edmonton Valley Zoo is not a nut-free or allergen-free facility. Our collection includes many fur-bearing animals. Common allergens at the Zoo include fur, feathers, straw, hay, dust and pollen. Many animals receive nuts and/or seeds as part of their diets. Members of the public may also bring in their own food or items that contain allergens. If you have any specific concerns regarding your upcoming program, please discuss these with one of our booking agents.

We have been to the Zoo before or have had the same program before. Can we request to see specific animals or do specific activities that we have done previously?
At the time of booking, please include these requests as part of your booking information. Your interpreter will do their best to accommodate your requests during your program. Please be aware that we cannot guarantee any visits or encounters with specific animals, due to animal health and availability. Zookeeping program-related activities are dependent on animal health, time of day, and zookeeper availability. Additionally, some animals may not be on public display at certain times of the year. Location(s) of the animal(s) of interest to your group may depend on the season and the current construction projects taking place at the Zoo.
Do you offer language interpretation/translation services at your site, or do you offer your programs in languages other than English?
We do not have language interpretation services or translators at the Zoo, but you are welcome to bring your own if your class or group requires one. All of our programs are offered in English. We cannot guarantee that we will be able to provide programs in other languages. Availability of our programs in other languages is dependent upon whether a bilingual interpreter is available at the time of your program.

For More Information

Edmonton Valley Zoo

13315 Buena Vista Road (87th Avenue)
PO Box 2359
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 2R7

Telephone In Edmonton: 311
Outside Edmonton: 780-442-5311
Email attractions@edmonton.ca

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