Sequoia Park Zoo membership and attendance both at all-time highs

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EUREKA- The Sequoia Park Zoo is more popular than ever, with membership and attendance at an all-time high. 

Sequoia Park Zoo members say the zoo is fun for the whole family.

"I think it's great.  The kids can get really interactive with the animals, and being in Humboldt County, we're kind of far from things like that," said David Kavidar, who is a member of Sequoia Park Zoo.

Now, the zoo is at an all-time high for visitors.  Officials with the Seqoia Park Zoo Foundation confirm attendance has jumped from less than 71,000 in 2012 to about 95,000 in 2014.  Membership is up 25 percent from this time last year.

Sequoia Park Zoo Foundation officials say one of the main reasons for the higher attendance and membership at the zoo is the new Watershed Heroes exhibit.

"It's something new and different for the community and because the otters are really cute.  They're just super cute and it's also educational and it's appealing to little, tiny kids and older people and really, just everybody," said Amy Barnes, the Marketing and Communications Manager for the Sequoia Park Zoo Foundation.

“My kids love it with the tunnel and seeing all the otters and what not, it's really well done.  This is really nice," said Jesse Hindbaugh, who is a member of Sequoia Park Zoo.

"We love it.  The kids just love to come to the zoo and this is the first thing that we go to and we could spend all day here," said Sequoia Park Zoo member Lillian Scofield.

Barnes also says increased membership is important for the expansion of the zoo moving forward.

"Having an active, zoo membership helps us meet the basic requirements for funding organizations and grant writing proposals.  It lets our potential funders know that we have a tremendous amount of support from our community. That's great because they look and say, 'Wow, that community loves their zoo!  Look how many members,' and they're much more likely to want to fund our projects," Barnes said.

From now until March 15th, new zoo members will receive a 10 percent discount as part of the Membership Drive.