Summerfield Zoo opens for the summer season

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Mother Nature brought sunshine to the stateline on Sunday, allowing families to take advantage of the weather and Earth Day to visit the Summerfield Zoo.

Zoo owner Rick Anderson says most people are surprised at the variety of animals housed at the small zoo in the middle of Boone county.

Twelve-year-old Dakota Turley is one of them. He and his family visited Summerfield Zoo for the first time on Sunday.

“I thought there was going to be only certain animals, because it’s small – but there’s a lot of animals,” he said.

Turley got to see a lot of his favorite furry creatures. “My favorite is the wolf and my second is the fox. My third is the hyena,” he said. “They look like the K-9 dogs from the police.”

Abe Tangye spent Sunday playing with the animals. The 3-year-old boy was unfazed when he was surrounded by goats. His mom, Ashley, says she likes that she doesn’t have to travel far to have fun.

“There’s not a lot of things to do in Boone County,” she said. “It’s nice to have something to do to celebrate the warm weather, finally.”

Tangye says that now that they have seen what the local zoo has to offer, they’ll be back for more.

“Just watching our 3-year-old interacting with the animals was the best part.

On April of 2015, a tornado hit the area and the zoo was nearly destroyed. A new and improved wolf terrain will be the last bit in the zoo’s recovery effort.

“It’ll be a much larger area than they have now,” Anderson said. “It’s kind of our last dealing with the tornado stuff. Once our wolf habitats are done, that will be the end of it, hopefully.”

Summerfield Zoo is only open now on weekends, but will open during the week starting May 16th.

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