By Kim Meyer-Webb | Photography by Jamison Mosley | Makeup by Angie Lane with Barbara Jean | Wardrobe from Barbara Jean | Special Thanks to Conservation Education Animal Keeper LeeAnn Goette & Education Programs Coordinator Kellie Nichols
Presented by Arkansas Zoological Foundation, Wild Wines features more than 200 wonderful wines from O’Looney’s Wine & Liquor and light bites from the tastiest eateries in Central Arkansas. This festive fare will be complemented by the wildest entertainment in town; guests are encouraged to mix and mingle with Little Rock Zoo Animal Ambassadors and docents who serve as hosts throughout the zoo. It’s a unique opportunity to experience the animals after hours and offers the important story of wildlife conservation. Adrienne Collins realizes this power of knowledge to transform perspectives and a deeper understanding of our shared humanity. She looks forward to an evening of fellowship and fun that generates critical support for the Little Rock Zoo.
Adrienne moved to the Capital City and was introduced to the Little Rock Zoo through friends. “I met some really awesome people and started volunteering for the zoo in 2010 and have continued my support,” she reflects. Adrienne notes that the education component of the zoo’s mission is impressive. “I come from a long line of educators – so I am passionate about diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging.” Little Rock Zoo Director Susan Altrui elaborates that the zoo’s accessibility is a factor in its continued success, “There’s always good news to share. With so much happening here, everyone can find a reason to visit and enjoy the zoo.”
Exhibits and offerings reflect the zoo’s unwavering commitment to the natural world and bringing it into the lives of all Arkansans. For nearly a century, the Little Rock Zoo has provided a special place for people to commune with animals. Susan explains, “The zoo cultivates an appreciation for wildlife and wild places with a respect for all living things. It can also inspire global change.” Adrienne adds, “The staff is deeply dedicated to the care, safety and quality of life for animals.” She also realizes a keen awareness that the zoo brings with every visit “The Little Rock Zoo is a place for every citizen to improve their own health and the welfare of our planet.” As one of the most visited tourist attractions in Arkansas, welcoming nearly 300,000 visitors each year, there is ample opportunity to create meaningful awareness.
Proceeds from Wild Wines support the development of new projects – specifically the renovation of the amphitheater and exhibits at the front entrance to the zoo. Susan explains, “It’s the largest construction project the zoo has ever embarked on and will be partially funded by bond funds passed by Little Rock residents.” The foundation will secure additional, private funding and Susan recognizes each person as an invaluable resource. “The Arkansas Zoological Foundation is committed to investing in our state’s only accredited zoo with a vision for the future that is bright.”
a prehensile-tailed porcupine who recently joined the ambassador program, will dazzle + delight guests.