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June 28, 2003
If you do go, be aware that the animals probably will not hurt you or damage your car if you are careful and calm. However, the experience of having a llama, or some some large goat-like animal, stick its head in your car demanding food can be intimidating and suprising. Small kids could be frightend by this experience. Skittish adults who reflexively roll up power windows could also harm the amimals or cause damage to the car. If you like zoos, drive on to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.
From journal Weekend trip from Chicago to Ohio
June 26, 2003
The park suggests you do the drive through section first. You can go back through it as many times as you want. Included in the price is one cup of feed. They call it a bucket, but it is a very large plastic glass the size of a souvenir cup. We bought two extra cups for $2 each and headed in.
As soon as the gates started opening the animals flocked to the car. They are a bit aggressive because they know they will be fed. We had reindeer, elk, llamas, alpacas, and deer all sticking their heads in our window. We got to another gate where they gave us an option to buy carrots to feed the animals. It cost $3 for a one pound bag and $5 for a two pound bag. We bought a two pound bag. The animals were smaller in this section and we were more comfortable feeding the smaller deer. We drove on and saw about five large reindeer soaking in some muddy water. We stopped to take pictures of them and some goats resting up on a patch of boulders. It is an amazing experience to be able to interact so closely with animals. We were a bit nervous at first when the llamas and reindeer had their heads in the car with us, but we got used to it after a few minutes. Driving further down the road we drove through a heard of buffalo and got to see some of their babies as well as a bison. The next section we drove through had more exotic animals which were behind fences. We saw ostriches, zebras (including the rare white zebras), bongos, giraffes, and some animals which we did not know.
In the walk through section of the park you can visit with several smaller animals, mostly in cages. Peacocks roamed around the grounds. Pig races are held daily as well as camel and pony rides which are all included in the base price. We saw several types of monkeys including Colobus monkeys, baboons, and orangutans. Also at the park were flamingos, goats, camels, alpaca, a serval, lynx, and several birds. We even saw two warthogs sleeping the day away.
The gift shop sells T-shirts, several little toys, and stuffed animals of all sorts of wildlife. We found a "surprise bag" for a boy and a girl that were $5 each. It was a brown paper lunch bag filled with all sorts of little trinkets. They got stickers, gooey animals, and all sorts of little toys.
From journal Safaris, parades, dinosaurs . . . the culture of Cleveland