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Logo - Dreamnight at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

Since 2005, the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum has hosted "Dreamnight at the Zoo" for children who have special needs or who are chronically ill. This annual event is an exclusive evening for these children and their families to experience the Museum free of charge and without concern for social stigma and issues related to accessibility.

Docent and child in hummingbird aviary

The concept for "Dreamnight at the Zoo" originated in 1996 at the Rotterdam Zoo (Netherlands) when animal keeper, Peter van der Wulp, acknowledged how rarely children diagnosed with cancer were able to visit the zoo. Peter knew that the families of these medically frail children often had other expenses to meet, had difficulty finding the free time to visit and the obstacle of being stared at or dealing with people's reactions were reasons to stay away. In response to these dilemmas, the Rotterdam Zoo developed an event where these children and their families could have a relaxing and fun experience at the zoo and Peter's idea has spawned a worldwide phenomenon.

Currently, there are over 300 institutions in 35 countries that participate by hosting Dreamnight at the Zoo and the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum (along with Reid Park Zoo) believes that this event is one small way to give back to the Tucson community.

Children in line for free lemonade

Special activities for 2016's Dreamnight included:

See photos from Dreamnight 2016!

The next Dreamnight at the Zoo will take place at the Reid Park Zoo on Friday, September 22nd. RSVP information will be announced soon...

The Justice League of America by the Gallery

Check out the official
Dreamnight web site!
Dreamnight At The Zoo Logo

Many of our staff and volunteers help during this annual event, but there are a variety of other ways in which families, businesses and organizations can participate towards making this event a night to remember. If you'd like more information about how you can donate or become a sponsor of this event, please contact us at 520-883-3055.

Chld viewing the big horn sheep Picture Rocks Fire Department

Sponsored by:

Alpha Graphics Logo
Border Patrol Logo Pet Partners Logo Oro Valley Logo Pima County Sheriff Logo Star Wars Costuming Logo Three Points fire Department Logo Arizona Ghostbusters Logo University of Arizona Men's Soccer Club Logo
Whole Foods Logo Picture Rocks Fire Department Logo Justice League Arizona Logo Eegees Logo Desert Museum Art Institute Logo