Zoo Crew is a summer learning opportunity for kids entering fifth–eighth grade in the fall. Participants in the summer 2017 program will work with peers and zoo staff to develop and implement environmentally minded research projects to make positive changes in their own communities.
Notice to Zoo Members: Please check your membership status to make sure it's active and you're eligible to register when you want. Also confirm that our Membership team has your preferred email address on file to be sure you receive specific registration information and links. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 312-742-2322.
Looking for summer opportunities for kids from PreK to those entering fourth grade? Check out Lincoln Park Zoo’s summer Conservation Camp!
Registration | Pricing | Cancellation Deadline | Scholarships | Dates and Themes | Field Trips and Sleepover | Teen Volunteers | Open House and Gear Pick-Up | FAQs | About the Staff
Download the Lincoln Park Zoo Camp Registration Guide Tutorial
Please note: Members and donors eligible for early registration will receive an email with the registration link prior to their early registration date.
- Zoo supporters at the Curators’ Circle and above will be eligible to register early on Wednesday, February 8, beginning at 10 a.m.
- Active Safari level members will be eligible to register early on Wednesday, February 15, beginning at 10 a.m.
- Please note: Household and Individual members will register with the general public but receive a 15-percent discount. To check your membership status, call the membership hotline at 312-742-2322. Make sure you join or renew your membership prior to early registration!
- Open registration will begin Wednesday, March 1, at 10 a.m. A link to the online registration form will be available on this web page at that time.
- All campers may only be registered by their legal guardian.
Zoo Crew Pricing
Active Lincoln Park Zoo members at any level receive a 15-percent discount on registration. Become a member today!
Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–3 p.m.
$790/session ($672/session for Lincoln Park Zoo members)
- Daily healthy snack
- Two offsite field trips
- One overnight (including dinner and breakfast)
- Two Zoo Crew T-shirts
- Zoo Crew backpack
- Zoo Crew water bottle
3 p.m.-5 p.m.
After Care is available from 3–5 p.m. Campers stay after to enjoy additional time on zoo grounds and within the classroom. Campers will do a variety of activities during After Care, including going to animal buildings, arts and crafts, playing games, and as a special treat they will be able to ride the AT&T Endangered Species Carousel (weather dependent) and watch an age-appropriate movie at the end of the week. Instructors may utilize educator resources such as videos and online games. Cost is $160 per camper for the two-week session.
Lincoln Park Zoo adheres to a strict cancellation and refund policy. If the zoo must cancel a program, full refunds will be issued. If for any reason you need to cancel your registration before May 15, a refund will be issued, less a 12.5-percent processing fee. After May 15, Lincoln Park Zoo will not be able to offer any refunds for cancelled registrations.
Zoo Crew Scholarships
Lincoln Park Zoo offers a limited number of Zoo Crew scholarships, ranging from partial scholarships to full scholarships which cover the cost of the two-week session. Please complete and submit an application to be considered for a scholarship.
Please note: Scholarships are limited. Applying for a scholarship does not guarantee a spot in a summer program.
Optional: To guarantee your child a spot in camp, you may choose to register your child once registration opens. If your child is later granted a scholarship, we will refund the amount of the scholarship from the registration fee.
Application deadline: April 21
Download the Scholarship Application
Zoo Crew Dates and Themes
Participants must commit to attending two consecutive weeks of Zoo Crew. Although program themes for the different age groups are the same year to year, activities and projects do vary so campers can return for a unique experience each year.
Fifth–Sixth Graders: July 10-21, August 7-18
The 21st Century Zoo
It’s fun to see exotic animals like sloths and tigers, but zoos offer more than entertainment. This session will explore various zoo careers and share how different roles collaborate to provide excellent care for zoo animals. Discover how zoos contribute to a greater understanding of animal biology and wildlife conservation efforts around the world. By meeting zookeepers, nutritionists and veterinarians and partaking in hands-on projects, participants will discover the importance of the 21st century zoo.
Seventh–Eighth Graders: June 19–30, July 24-August 4
Lincoln Park Zoo in the Field
Lincoln Park Zoo plays a major role in conservation around the globe, from Chicago to Brazil to Tanzania. Zoo scientists don’t just study wildlife in the field, though; they also conduct research projects at the zoo to better understand animal needs and behaviors. Participants will meet zoo endocrinologists, animal-behavior experts and population biologists and share some of their work firsthand. Afterward, they’ll better appreciate Lincoln Park Zoo’s far-reaching conservation work at the zoo and in the wild.
Field Trips and Sleepover
Offsite Field Trips
Zoo Crew campers will go on one offsite field trip per week. Permission slips will be given in advance and required for campers to leave zoo grounds. The Zoo Crew campers and staff will travel via school bus to offsite field trips during regular camp hours. Additional information and the field trip waiver will be distributed on the first day of the camp session. Field trips are included in the cost of Zoo Crew.
Each Zoo Crew session will host a sleepover on the second Thursday of the two-week session. Campers will attend Zoo Crew as usual from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and then stay afterwards to have dinner, participate in nighttime activities at the zoo, and then sleep in an animal exhibit building. On the Friday morning after the overnight, the campers will present their culminating project for caregivers, zoo staff, and summer campers. Caregivers are invited to join at 9 a.m. followed by check-out at 9:30 a.m.
Chicagoland area high school students ages 13–18 have the opportunity to spend three weeks assisting in the day-to-day running of Conservation Camp. Camp Teen Volunteers will be mentored by Camp Instructors on how to care and educate our PreK-4th grade Conservation Camp campers. Applicants entering their Junior year and above may have the opportunity to work with campers entering 5th-8th grade in our Zoo Crew program. This is an unpaid educational service-learning opportunity. For students entering grades 9–12 or college freshman. Learn more.
Open House and Gear Pick-Up Days
The camp team will host an Open House for registered parents and campers. At the Open House, you can meet camp staff, see classrooms and pick up and purchase camp gear including t-shirts, backpacks, and water bottles.
Already familiar with Lincoln Park Zoo Camp? Parents of campers who have previously attended Lincoln Park Zoo Camp Programs are welcome to drop by on one of the Gear Pick-Up Days to pick up and purchase camp gear including t-shirts, backpacks, and water bottles.
Dates for these events will be released in your confirmation email upon completing the online registration for camp.
Frequently Asked Questions
Download the Zoo Camp FAQs
About the Zoo Crew Staff
Each camp group is led by two camp instructors who have extensive professional experience working with children and a demonstrated commitment to connecting children to the natural world. Camp instructors facilitate all educational components of the camp day, but groups also have the chance to meet zoo staff throughout the two weeks, from veterinarians to zookeepers to scientists.
For more information please email Camp@lpzoo.org or call 312-742-2056.