Zoo lights

‘Wild Lights’ Returns to the Milwaukee County Zoo in December (2022)

Milwaukee With Kids is proud to partner with the Milwaukee County Zoo to help spread the word about Wild Lights.

Get ready to be dazzled, Milwaukee!

Wild Lights powered by We Energies is returning for its second year to the Milwaukee County Zoo, with thousands of twinkling lights illuminating the enchanted paths and forests along the grounds.

Your family can stroll through the one-mile path marked with animal-themed lights displays.

New this year is a dazzling illuminated gorilla, rhino, zebra sculpture, and a magnificent peacock photo opportunity.

Plus, there will be even more lights than last year!

Wild Lights will run Dec. 1 through Dec. 31 from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Admission gates will close each night at 8:15 p.m. The Zoo will be closed Dec. 5, 6, 12, 13, 24 and 25.

There will be festive food and drinks available for purchase.

Families can also enjoy a crisp, winter woodland ride along the North Shore Bank Safari Train (weather dependent). Penzey’s old-fashioned carousel will also be available to ride atop your favorite animal.

For guests with sensory sensitivities, there is a Wild Lights Guide, and sensory bags available at Guest Services including headphones and fidget toys.

Wild Lights is an outdoor experience, so grab your scarf and mittens and enjoy the winter and (hopefully) snow globe conditions.

For their health and safety, animals are not viewable during Wild Lights.

There’s also a special 21+ evening for adults happening December 8-9 sponsored by North Shore Bank.

During the adults-only “Cheers! Wild Lights – Luminary and Libations“, the Zoo will be transformed into a life-size snow globe complete with glowing displays. For this special night, each of the “decked-out” areas throughout the Zoo will be enhanced with hundreds of luminarias!

There will also be local bands performing, live ice-carving demonstrations, and a National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation watch party.

A signature cocktail and specialty seasonal foods will be specially prepared for the evening’s festivities and available for purchase.

During Wild Lights, you can drop off your working and non-working lights for recycling. Recycling lights keeps them out of landfills — less space for landfills means more space for wildlife. Proceeds from this effort will support Wisconsin’s Endangered Resources Fund.

Share your photos on Instagram using #WildLightsMKEZoo.

Admission is $18 for adults and $16 for children ages 3-12 when you buy online. At the gate, admission is $20 for adults and $18 for children. Children 2 and under are free. Zoological Society members receive a 15% discount with code twinkle and membership number.

Parking is free!

Find out more at milwaukeezoo.org/visit/upcoming-events/wild-lights/.

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