The circle of life continues at the Denver Zoo amid coronavirus pandemic

Posted at 8:16 PM, May 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-22 22:16:22-04

DENVER — Even though the doors are closed, the circle of life continues at the Denver Zoo.

"Life goes on here," said Jake Kubié, the communications director at the Denver Zoo. "We have two lion cubs, a rhino calf, and a zebra colt."

The new baby animals have made social media debuts and become celebrities online. But the staff say they are ready to make public appearances.

"I think our animals are very ready to reopen again, as we walk around the zoo," said Bert Vescolani, CEO of the Denver Zoo. "They are curious, they are like, 'where did everyone go?'"

The zoo has applied for a variance under the 'Safer at Home' order put in place by the state earlier in May. The plan, submitted to the state, would allow the zoo to reopen, but under strict social distancing guidelines. The state has not responded to the variance but officials say they are doing everything they can to prepare.

"We have planned and prepared and got the zoo in as best possible readiness that we can to re-engage our community and bring it back to the Denver," explained Vescolani.

The most important guideline, according to Vescolani, is the requirement that all visitors and staff wear masks. It is important "not only because of the Denver order to wear masks but all of our staff and all of our guests will be required to wear masks."

Guests will also be required to move in the same direction around the park and ticketing will be available only trough timed entries.

But as the zoo reopens, the animals and employees are excited to see people once again.

"We hope to open very soon. The zoo has been preparing and getting ready for our community to return."