Press Release

April 7, 2014

Maine Wildlife Park Opening For 2014 Season

The Maine Wildlife Park, located on Route 26 in Gray, will open for the 2014 season on Saturday, April 19th at 9:30am – just in time for school vacation! Even though there is still some snow on the ground and it’s a bit muddy, the wildlife park will welcome visitors a bit later than usual, due to heavy snow cover, on the 3rd Saturday of April this year. Visitors will be happy to note that for the 6th year in a row, the park’s admission fees remain the same!

Many families cannot wait to visit their favorite animals after a long winter, but close to 13,000 fans have ‘kept in touch’ with our wildlife via Facebook over the winter, ‘liking’ and commenting on photos posted of our wildlife as they adapted to winter snow and cold. But everyone’s ready to see the moose, bears, eagles, owls, foxes and more again in person!

The Wildlife Park has a variety of NEW things to see and do this year! A brand new native snake and amphibian exhibit is taking shape in the Visitor’s Center using the space formerly occupied by the restrooms. There are new games, puzzles and exhibits in there as well. The turtle ponds have been completely reconstructed to ameliorate leaking ponds and predation. The Friends of the Wildlife Park are funding the construction of a new lynx exhibit, on which work has already begun. The park also has a new resident, an unreleasable merlin, which can be viewed in the raptor exhibits.

New events are planned for several weekends beginning Saturday May 3, starting with a snake and turtle event. Raptor programs, an LLBean Camping Demo, a Tailgate Yard Sale, Summer Solstice Farmers Market, ‘Meet Donn Fendler Day’, Fish on Ice, Wildlife Encounters and Enchanted Forests will all be new and different! Favorites like Mad Science, Pow Wow, Chainsaw Artists, Northwoods Law Day, Rick Charette and Halloweenfest will all be back as well. Plan to purchase your family pass now so you don’t miss any of the fun; and be sure to pick up an Event Calendar! Keep up with current photos and stories on Facebook too.

The Maine Wildlife Park is owned and operated by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. The park exists to promote an understanding and awareness of the wildlife, conservation and habitat protection programs and projects of MDIFW.

The Maine Wildlife Park has over 30 species of native wildlife on display, plus wildlife gardens, nature trails, a fish hatchery and other interactive exhibits and displays. The park is open daily from April 19th through November 11th from 9:30am-4:30pm; visitors must leave the premises by 6:00pm. Admission to the park is free for ages 3 and under; $5.00 ages 4-12; $7.00 for adults, and $5.00 for seniors. Groups of 15 or more are $3.50 per person. Bring a picnic and spend the day! Family and Community Season Passes are available, and are an incredible bargain for families and groups that visit the park several times over the course of the summer. Remember that Family Passes make a great gift; and are available for purchase in the Department of Fish & Wildlife’s online store @ www.mefishwildlife.com. For more information about any of these programs, please call the Maine Wildlife Park at
207-657-4977; or visit us online at www.mainewildlifepark.com , www.mefishwildlife.com or on Facebook!

GEMS OF ROUTE 26: Rich in culture, ecology and history, the Maine Wildlife Park, Shaker Village, Poland Spring Inn and Resort, Poland Spring Preservation Society, Poland Spring Preservation Park, Harvest Hill Farm and the grounds of McLaughlin Garden truly are “The Gems of 26.” Visitors are encouraged to go and experience the park, as well as five other unique sites -- all less than an hour from each other on the picturesque Route 26 in Western Maine. Route 26 connects Western Maine to the rest of the State via Maine Turnpike’s exit 63 in Gray; meandering through gorgeous countryside and boasting culturally, historically, and ecologically significant attractions. Just thirty minutes north of Portland, a family can spend a day or several days visiting all five important and interesting destinations for very little money – a true value. www.gemsof26.com