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Field Trips

Bring your group to the Zoo!

All groups requesting a field trip must complete a Field Trip Registration form two weeks in advance.  School group discounts are available on weekdays during the school year only.  For a summer field trip, please see the Youth Group field trip registration form.

What do you need to do?

- Fill out the Field Trip Form two weeks in advance 
- Submit form on-line
- Watch for confirmation of your registration sent via email, it should arrive within 10 business days.
- Field trips must be pre-paid, you can pay with cash, check or credit card.
- Please contact us and schedule a time to pre-purchase your tickets in advance at 309-799-3482 ext 225

What type of group are you?

On the Field Trip Form you will be asked to select your Group according to the following:
  • Illinois School - If you are an Illinois school (public or private), a head start or preschool associated with a school with at least 20 participants. Student admission is no charge as per the IL Forest Preserve/Zoological Park Act. Teacher admission is no charge. Chaperone admission is at a reduced rate of $6.50 per person.
  • Out of State School - If you are an Iowa school (public or private), a head start or preschool associated with a school with at least 20 participants. Student admission is at a reduced rate of $5.00 per person.Teacher admission is no charge. Chaperone admission is at a reduced rate of $6.50 per person.
  • Youth Group - If you are a private preschool, homeschool group, daycare, camp, scout group, or other youth group with at least 15 participants. Student admission is at a reduced rate of $5.00 per person.Teacher admission is no charge. Chaperone admission is at a reduced rate of $6.50 per person.

A few things to know:

  • Participant Number: To receive a group discount, school groups must have a minimum of 20 participants. Youth groups must have a minimum of 15 participants.
  • Chaperones: It is highly recommended that field trip groups have 1 adult chaperone for every 5 students. Chaperones must stay with the children they are supervising at all times.
  • Additional Guests: Any additional adults (non-chaperone) and siblings will be charged the full admission price
  • Pre-payment: Field trips must be pre-paid (payments are non-refundable as tickets are good all season)
  • Parking Fee: There is a $3.00 parking fee per vehicle and a $12.00 parking fee per school bus  

Add an Educational Tour!

Children-view-giraffe.jpgUse the Zoo to its educational potential! Learn more about how through education we inspire conservation action while helping meet state education standards. From Pre-K to College level, we've got tours that will be great for your group!

What you should know:

  • Tours run from 20-30 minutes
  • Cost is $4 per student and chaperones (teachers are free to attend the program)
  • Please call 309-799-3482 ext 225 with questions
  • Book early, dates fill fast!

Program topics include (but are not limited to):
  • Adaptations: From prehensile tails to swinging hands and how to survive in desert sands, we'll take a closer look at the special characteristics that help animals survive.
  • Africa: See our Giraffe, Zebras, Ostrich, Lions and Colobus monkeys as we explore the animals from Africa.
  • Biodiversity: Meaning the variety of life, explore Biodiversity Hall and its wide variety of species to help understand why biodiversity is so important to the survival of life on Earth.
  • Big Cats: Have you ever seen a lion’s skull? How sharp is a leopard’s claw? How far can a snow leopard leap? In this program your group will learn what it takes to survive at the top of the food chain.
  • Habitats: Which animals live where? What about their environment best suits particular animals? Join us as we look at animals from around the world, the different habitats they call home and how everything is connected.
  • Reptiles: Discover the ancient world of reptiles and what makes them unique. See our Reptile House and learn about the characteristics that make reptiles so fascinating!

* All programs can be tailored to any age group.

DON'T SEE WHAT YOU WANT? We can custom design a tour for you! Just give us a call with questions, 309-799-3482 ext 225.


Rides, Food and More Fun  

Train rides ($3.75), carousel rides ($3.50), giraffe feeding ($5), and parakeet feeding ($3) are available to create more memorable experiences at the Zoo.
At the domesticated animal yard and the koi pond, guests can feed the animals only with feed available for purchase in those areas as it is diet specific for the animals. Feeding of other animals or using other food is not permitted. 
Field trip groups are allowed to bring your own lunch or enjoy food from our concession stand. Remember, for the safety of the animals, there are no straws allowed in the zoo. If you plan on having a picnic lunch, you can eat around the concession stand at the picnic tables and grass, or on the Festival Lawn, located between the Carousel and Australian Outback.