Perhaps you’ve seen the commercials for the special fund raising Twilight Tour at Tanganyika Wildlife Park Saturday evening Aug. 11, 5 to 9 p.m. While the Park has been getting ready for the event which will raise money for the Winter Fund for the animals, behind the scenes, Kianga, the female giraffe from Minot, N.D. gave birth to a healthy baby on Thursday.
This is her first calf since coming to Tanganyika last year when flooding of the Souris River caused the Roosevelt Park Zoo to evacuate the zoo’s animals until damage could be repaired. It seems particularly fitting that this new baby should arrive just before the second annual Twilight Tour as last year’s event raised funds to care for the displaced animals.
Tanganyika took in the Zoo’s entire big cat collection and three giraffes, including Kianga within 24 hours of getting the call for help. Several other Minot residents including zebras, hornbills, and red river hogs were taken in by Tanganyika over the months that followed. More than a year later, Roosevelt Park Zoo is just beginning the rebuilding process, which is estimated to take $60 million. This means that Kianga and her new baby will be at Tanganyika for a while longer before they are able to return home.
The addition of the Minot animals stretched Tanganyika’s budget, prompting the Park to set aside a special Tanganyika Winter Fund as part of the 501(c)(3) Saving a Species Fund’s efforts.
Proceeds raised at Saturday night’s exclusive event will contribute to the nearly $600,000 required to help care for all the rare and endangered animals at Tanganyika.
The Twilight Tour is an intimate affair that will include wine, beer and food samplings from local establishments, free interactive animal feeding experiences, visits with animal keepers, access to behind-the-scenes animal areas, and the Wichita Family Vision wildlife art auction, which includes art created by some of Tanganyika’s animal residents. The evening starts at 5 p.m. (4:30 p.m. is a meet and greet with Randall for VIP ticket holders) and wraps up at 9 p.m.
Randall, narrator of the popular YouTube video “Honey Badger Don’t Care,” will be a guest of honor at the event and will present during the auction. Tickets to this unique event are $55 per person general admission and may be purchased online or at the door.
Tanganyika Wildlife Park is an organization dedicated to sharing their passion for animals by providing visitor experiences that are entertaining and educational in order to have a significant impact in the stewardship of selected species. The Park has been operating since 1986 and first opened to the public in 2008.
Tanganyika Wildlife Park is West of 183rd St. W. on Maple near Goddard, Kan. The Park’s hours are currently 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.