Happy post-Easter and Passover everyone! Sadly, the mall zoos are gone. I always look forward to the Easter weekend mini-farms. Not only do they offer a great opportunity for kids (and adults!) to experience the sounds and sights (and smells) of a hobby farm but they are a great way to meet other families/friends. Lately, I’ve heard rumors of the malls slowly eliminating this yearly ritual because of animal cruelty protesters (or a fear thereof) but I’m of the opinion that they offer a valuable educational tool. If properly cared for I don’t see how a heated mall is any more cruel than an outdoor mini farm. Let’s hope they keep this tradition going!
Now that the mall mini zoos are gone, where can we take our children for a few hours of educational fun? The Ecomuseum Zoo!
Located in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, it might be a little off the beaten path for any non-West Islanders but it is well-worth the drive. They house an amazing variety of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish. The staff is highly knowledgeable and extremely friendly. It is a combination of indoor and outdoor animal housings so it’s great on a rainy or a sunny day.
The admission rates are comparable to other Montreal-based zoos and attractions. Toddlers (2 and under) are free; Children (3-15) are $9; Adults (16-64) are $15 and Seniors (65 +) are $12. As an added bonus, they offer free parking!
Check their calendar for extra activities. For example, they offer great educational workshops and even overnight “sleep with the animals” events. I’m also seriously considering their birthday hosting options.
Have fun, be safe and give the black bears (Suzie, Marge and Homer) a kiss for me!
Here are some sites that discuss the Ecomuseum: