Olentangy Valley News

Fall Fest celebrates 'Hanna-versary' at the zoo

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Jack Hanna speaks at the May 2010 opening of the Polar Frontier exhibit, one of the countless expansions he has championed in his 35 years with the Columbus Zoo.

It's been 35 years since Jack Hanna took the lead at the Columbus Zoo and began his quest to make it one of the nation's best.

To celebrate what the zoo is calling his "Hanna-versary," the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium will host Fall Fest Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 21-22 and the Conservation Cup golf outing Monday, Sept. 23.

Fall Fest, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days, will feature fall-themed activities including Jack Hanna's Pumpkin Carving Competition and animals bobbing for apples.

Hanna will take the stage at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to host live shows and characters such as Garfield will be circling the zoo to do meet-and-greets.

Meanwhile, artisans in the Pioneer Village will demonstrate candle making, quilting, glass blowing, wood carving and more.

Anyone who brings a used electronics donation during Fall Fest will receive free zoo admission. ECO-CELL will be collecting items including cell phones, laptops, digital cameras, e-readers, mp3 players, game systems and portable hard drives.

Jungle Jack's Conservation Cup will get its shotgun start at 10 a.m. Sept. 23 at the Safari Golf Club. During the 18-hole scramble, golf foursomes will have the opportunity to meet Hanna and some of the zoo's animals.

Each participant receives a photo of their foursome, food and drinks along the course and a polo shirt that commemorates the Hanna's "35 years of Khaki."

The outing will conclude with a dinner catered by Roosters where golfers will be awarded with prizes.

For more information about Hannah's anniversary celebration and a full schedule of Fall Fest activities, visit colszoo.org.