event recap: 40th annual ZippityZooDoo at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

Congrats to Karin B. (comment #6 care of random.org draw) for winning the Running for Hope 5K race entry giveaway! Please email me at poiseinparma (at) gmail (dot) come to claim your prize.  Didn’t win?? Sign up today at the event website or enter to win over at Jess’ blog.

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Zippity doo dah, Zippity aye, My oh my what a wonderful day…

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…and evening!

Putting ZippityZooDoo, the Cleveland Zoological Society’s (and CLE’s longest running) benefit, on my calendar at the turn of 2013 seemed like over-planning. But my how it snuck up on me and there I was on Friday, June 7, walking and talking with the animals under the overcast skies. It was crisp out for a June evening, but that didn’t keep us from having a great time.

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During the cocktail hour, guests strolled the grounds of the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, sipping on beverages and trying hors d’oeuvres such as Herb Pistou Crostinis, Chive Tied Rare Roast Beef Tenderloin bundles, Horseradish Shrimp Cocktail Shooters and Fresh Crudité Shooters.

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While this benefit promised the some of the usual fundraiser fare including cocktails, a gourmet dinner and dancing, guests also explored one-of-a kind Zoo experiences. It’s extremely cool to check in at the registration table to be greeted by an owl.

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One very special event feature was the live carving of the “animals” that would Circle of Wildlife Carousel. According to the zoo website: “the carousel will feature 64 beautiful hand-carved wildlife figures and 2 chariots representing animals and biomes from around the world.” The Cleveland Zoological Society is now raising funds to be able to provide this to its patrons: there’s more information on the zoo’s website on how you can donate here. Scheduled to open in 2014, it’s going to be quite the addition to the zoo!

When it was time to sit down for dinner, our second course of a Watermelon Feta Cheese Salad with marinated cucumbers, tomatoes, and a fresh oregano vinaigrette awaited us. It was a nice light option for a summer’s evening.

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For the main course, most guests enjoyed a Coffee Rubbed Filet Mignon with a Madeira wine mushroom glace, chive sea salt roast fingerling potatoes, heirloom petite carrots and beets.  I, on the other hand, was happy to see the gluten-free option: a Herb-Roasted Vegetable-Stuffed Portobello Mushroom with chive oil scented lentils and quinoa.

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Don’t let the veggie friendly option fool you: it was quite hearty and flavorful while being quite substantial.

I had to pass on the Lemon Almond Terrine dessert, but opted for another beverage as my friends and I planned to see what silent auction prizes we could take home. Alas, we did not win the overnight for 24 people at the Zoo. Maybe next year. We opted to dance away our sorrows…

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…while only moderately making a scene. All in good fun while supporting a great cause!!

SAVE-THE-DATE(S): The Cleveland Zoological Society will be hosting Twilight at the Zoo on Friday, August 2 and Date Night at the ZOOvies on Friday, August 23. Both are “must attend” events for different reasons… but you’ll just have to stay tuned to the blog to learn why! (And maybe even win tickets to one of these upcoming events…)

Keep tabs on what’s happening with the Cleveland Zoological Society by liking their Facebook page or by following @clevezoosociety on Twitter.

Disclosure: In exchange for sharing this recap and additional event information on the blog, I received a media pass to attend this event and other 2013 Cleveland Zoological Society events. My thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

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