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Northwest Trek News
Jun 09, 2022

Go beyond the typical Father’s Day gifts and give dad a memorable experience he can enjoy with the whole family this year. Take a Wild Drive and get up close to a moose, touch a jellyfish or go off-roading with a keeper to meet amazing animals! He won’t forget these memorable experiences at Northwest Trek and our sister zoo, Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium! 1. Go on a Wild Drive Uh-oh! There’s a traffic jam… a herd of bison are in the road! This Wild Drive is bound to be much more exciting than rush hour on I-5. Take your own personal …

Apr 29, 2022

Go beyond the typical Mother’s Day gifts and give mom a memorable experience she can enjoy with the whole family this year. Get up close to a moose, groom a goat or touch a jellyfish! She won’t soon forget these amazing  experiences at Northwest Trek and our sister zoo, Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium! 1. Go on a Wild Drive Uh-oh! There’s a traffic jam… a herd of bison are in the road! This Wild Drive is bound to be much more exciting than rush hour on I-5. Take your own personal vehicle on the paved roads through Northwest Trek’s peaceful 435-acre …

Apr 18, 2022

In honor of National Volunteer Week, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park employees thank the park’s irreplaceable volunteers for their time and energy all year-round. In 2021, volunteers at Northwest Trek logged a total of 2,295 hours. “I appreciate all of our volunteers for their hard work and dedication to Northwest Trek and willingness to assist at any time,” said volunteer coordinator Jessica Steele. Six volunteers have each given more than 20 years of service to the wildlife park. Another three have given at least ten years. It’s likely you’ve met a volunteer while visiting Northwest Trek. Many of them have probably …

Apr 15, 2022

Metro Parks Tacoma’s Dickman Mill Park and groundbreaking nature science education curriculum Wildlife Champions have won 2022 Spotlight Awards from the Washington Recreation & Park Association (WRPA). The awards, open to any Washington parks district, were announced Thursday night at the annual WRPA conference in Bellevue, Washington. The Spotlight Award category recognizes outstanding achievement in facilities, parks, trails or programs by parks and recreation agencies. “Metro Parks is extremely proud of both of these outstanding contributions to our community, which perfectly fulfil our mission of creating healthy opportunities to play, learn and grow,” said Andrea Smith, Park Board president. “We’re …

Apr 01, 2022

For the fourth consecutive year, Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium and Northwest Trek Wildlife Park are certified as sensory-inclusive venues by a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing understanding, acceptance, and inclusion for people with sensory needs. “We want every guest to feel welcome and comfortable throughout their visit,” said Alan Varsik, director of Point Defiance Zoo and Northwest Trek. “Becoming sensory-inclusive helps us engage with everyone in our community and awaken a connection to wildlife.” In 2019, the two sister zoos were among the first venues in Washington to become sensory-certified through KultureCity. Today, eight venues in the state are …

Mar 25, 2022

Northwest Trek Wildlife Park will be open daily (April 2-April 10) just in time for spring breaks and there will be plenty to see and do. Both wild animals and the animals at Northwest Trek become much more active in spring as it warms up and natural food sources become more abundant. Watch Active Bears Both the black bears and grizzly bears seem to be getting their full energy back and will be viewable over spring breaks. The black bears at Northwest Trek are waking up from torpor, a state in which a bear’s body temperature, respiratory rate and metabolic …

Feb 22, 2022

This Black History Month, we sat down with Sunni, a zookeeper at Northwest Trek Wildlife Park who helps make the park the incredibly special place it is. We asked her about her experiences in zookeeping and what working with animals and wildlife means to her. Q: What is your favorite part of the job? A: I love working with and creating a relationship with the animals. I also enjoy creating fun and special moments with children on the Keeper Adventure Tours I lead. It’s wonderful watching them discover something new and cool and seeing their reaction to the animals. Q: …

Jan 11, 2022

Northwest Trek Wildlife Park’s Zoological Curator Marc Heinzman has been accepted into the Emerging Wildlife Conservation Leaders program. This national two-year program brings together twenty emerging leaders in the wildlife conversation field for intense training in developing well-rounded and successful conservation campaigns. “I’m extremely passionate about the conservation of wildlife, and this program will give me the skills and knowledge to be as effective as possible in working toward that goal,” said Heinzman. Acceptance into the program provides the opportunity to connect with other emerging conservationists from across the country and other parts of the world. Participants will work in …

Oct 21, 2021

They were literally jumping up and down as soon as they got off the buses. “Animals! We’re going to see animals!” It was the first-ever field trip for Beyond the Bell, a groundbreaking new partner program offering after-school activities and childcare to Tacoma students. But Friday October 8 was a no-school data day – and so Beyond the Bell was bringing any K-5 child who signed up on a field trip to Northwest Trek Wildlife Park, all day long. And every single one of the 155 students was incredibly excited. Beyond the Bell is a comprehensive program for Tacoma elementary …

Oct 20, 2021

It’s National Veterinary Technician Week Oct. 17-23, and we’re celebrating our wonderful veterinary technicians with a virtual thank-you card. Keepers, curators and veterinarians all weighed in to thank our superhero vet tech Tracy Cramer, plus keeper Deanna Edwards who’s also a licensed vet tech, for all they do to care for animals and help staff: prepping for procedures, monitoring animal vitals and taking samples, working with keepers to help animals take part in their own health care, giving therapies, endless administrative support and generally being awesome. “Our veterinary technicians (also known as veterinary nurses) are invaluable. They do a tremendous …