Stone Zoo becomes Winter Wonderland on Thanksgiving

STONEHAM ? A beloved holiday family tradition returns to Stone Zoo in Stoneham when “ZooLights” opens on Thanksgiving and continues through Dec. 30, with the exception of Christmas Day.The winter wonderland at Stone Zoo imbues thousands of visitors each year with the holiday spirit as they stroll along tree-lined paths lit by thousands of twinkling lights.Upon entering the Zoo, you will find yourself is Yukon Creek, which recreates an abandoned research site in a Canadian boreal forest bordering the tundra. The Yukon Creek exhibit, which is full of dazzling holiday lights, is also home to bald eagles, porcupines, lynx, a gray fox and a pair of reindeer.Be sure to get your photograph taken with Santa and make time to visit a magical holiday world filled with fairy tale characters and dancing plush animals before heading out for a trek through Stone Zoo’s Himalayan Highland exhibit. In the Himalayan Highlands you’ll find snow leopards, Markhor goats and a yak, which is commonly used as a beast of burden in the Himalayan Highlands.For those looking for a respite from the New England weather, a visit to the Windows to the Wild exhibit is a guaranteed treat. The exhibit includes the zoo’s large flamingo colony, which is comprised of Chilean and Caribbean flamingos. Small birds, mammals, and primates from around the world, including African-crested porcupines, hyacinth macaws, and emperor tamarins, also co-exist in this exhibit.ZooLights is open from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. from Nov. 22 through Dec. 30 (closed on Christmas). Admission is $4 per person and children under two-years-old are admitted free. The Stone Zoo is located at 149 Pond St. in Stoneham.

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