Teddy Bear Day

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:51

    SUSSEX COUNTY-On Saturday, Aug. 20, Space Farms Zoo and Museum will celebrate Teddy Bear Day, an annual event commemorating the family's long history with bears. Space Farms Zoo is home to Goliath, the Guiness Book World Record Kodiak bear, and is internationally known for breeding endangered Hokkaido bears. The zoo is currently the home of nine bears from four different species: Kodiak, Syrian, Himalayan, and Black. The bears spend the warm summer days lollygagging around in their pools or playing in the shady grass. When he was president, Teddy Roosevelt refused to shoot a bear cub tied to a tree. He was also responsible for the formation of Yellowstone National Park, the wilderness home of many protected grizzly bears. His sportsmanship was celebrated with the creation of a stuffed toy bears for children, which became known as "Teddy" bears. Roosevelt became a personal hero of Fred Space, co-owner of the zoo and museum complex with his son, Parker. On Teddy Bear Day, any child that brings a teddy bear receives free admission to the zoo (when accompanied by an adult). This special day will have a Teddy Bear Magic Show by Wescraft and a Teddy Bear Contest with prizes for children. Free pamphlets on native black bear safety, from the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife, will also be given out. The museum showcases more than 100,000 items from American history, including antique cars and motorcycles, old-fashioned carriages and wagons, an Eskimo exhibit, a mineral theater, weapons and rifles, a tool barn, doll museum, blacksmith shop, miniature circus, hand-built train set, and Indian arrowheads and artifacts. The zoo includes bobcats, tigers, lions, buffalo, hyena, wild ponies, timber wolves, foxes, bears, deer, leopards, monkeys, jaguars, coyotes, llamas, yaks, snakes, and hundreds more. This private collection of wildlife is the largest in the world, and even rare, exotic species thrive in the natural environment. Space Farms, located on Route 519 in Wantage, is open daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. until Oct. 31. Admission is $10.95 per adult, $9.95 per senior, and $6.50 per child (without a Teddy Bear on Teddy Bear Day). Family season passes and birthday party packages are available. For more information, call 973-875-5800 or visit spacefarms.com.