Overnight Adventures

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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Have you ever wanted to spend the night at the Zoo and learn something, too? With our Overnight Adventure programs, you can! From April through October, our Nocturnal Adventure programs are available for school groups and Bunk for a Badge programs specifically designed for Girl Scouts.   ​

Cost: $50 per child and $30 adult

Nocturnal Adventures for Schools

Available select dates in April, May, September and October

Spend the night at the zoo with your school! Our Nocturnal Adventures help teach science curriculum in a way like no other. Come join us on one of our thematic evenings — Adaptation Station, Conservation Connection or Habitat Junction — to help assist you teach these concepts to your class! [more...]

Adaptation Station

From where they live to what they eat, animals have adaptations to aid them in their surroundings. Our nightly activities investigate how adaptations help an animal survive.  The night will include an after-hours tour, a evening hike through our Deserts building and an adaptation game.  Together, we will explore how certain physical or behavioral characteristics aid an organism's fight for resources, food and survival.

Conservation Connection

Who’s endangered and why? Get connected and explore what you can do to help endangered species and habitats around the world.  Participants will learn about how species become endangered and why caring for the animals at the Zoo is important to the survival of species in the wild. Over the course of the night, groups will be tak​​en on a behind the scenes tour of the dolphin kitchen, participate in after hour exploration of the Oceans building, and learn more about conservation through games and a craft. Join us to find out more about what you can do to help protect the earth and its inhabitants!

Habitat Junction

Who lives where and why? Discover the importance of habitats to animals and see what it takes for the Zoo to put together a habitat.  Groups will be taken on a behind the scenes tour of Oceans to see what it takes to put together a habitat at the Zoo.  Also, participants will go on an exploratory night hike in our Gardens, play games and make a craft. 

Orangutans

Spend the night at the zoo and discover the world of orangutans and orangutan conservation. In the morning you and your students will be some of the first people into the Simon Skjodt International Orangutan Center where you will have an opportunity to come face to face with our orangutans. ​

Zoo Careers (New for 2016)

Ever wonder what it would be like to work at a zoo? Investigate the wide range of careers found at the zoo. Go behind the scenes and see how the zoo works for people and animals.

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Bunk for a Badge for Girl Scouts

Available select dates in June, July, and August

The Bunk for a Badge program is specifically designed for Girl Scout Juniors and Brownies! Your scouts will have a fun time spending the night at the Zoo and leave the next day with the badge they earned the night before. ​

Since this program is geared specifically toward scouts and their parents and leaders, we ask that you do not bring tag-alongs that are not registered as a part of your troop. Arrival time for this program is 6pm. The next morning after breakfast, groups can stay and explore the Indianapolis Zoo all day. Come join us on one of our thematic evenings. Brownies choose between Pets and Senses. Juniors choose between Animal Habitat, Detective, and Flowers.  The first troop to book the night selects the badge and only one badge program can be run per evening. [more...]

Pets (Brownies)

Do you know what it takes to care for a pet? Whether you have a pet or not you will learn all about what you need to care for an animal as well as see how the Zoo cares for their animals.  Through crafts, behind-the-scenes tours and other activities at the Zoo you will create your own pet care manual while earning your Brownie Pets badge.

Senses (Brownies)

Ever wondered why we have five senses? We use them every day, but in this badge, your girl scouts will put their senses to the ultimate test! Don’t worry; we have items that will help you develop super senses for the evening. Your scouts will smell your way through “food” items, just like some ocean animals do. We will play a game with your ears, and strap on some “new” eyes to see the world differently. We will even take a look at our Deserts Dome to see how the animals use their senses. 

Animal Habitat (Juniors)

It’s a celebration so put your party shoes on and come to a ‘wildlife party’ at the Zoo. You will learn about animals and their habitats while getting ready for the party.  There will be games to play and crafts to make as well as a scavenger hunt all in celebration of animal habitats. 

Detective (Juniors)

When a long-haired snipe escapes at the Indianapolis Zoo, it is up to a group of girl scouts to help get it back. Using clues, decoding messages from friendly orangutans, and making tracks, Girl Scout Juniors follow and eventually recover this fictitious animal.

Flowers (Juniors)

They smell great, make amazing gifts, and can cheer up any room! But flowers are more than just a plant with good looks. Come and dig up more secrets about flowers in this badge. Go on a flower hunt, create a scented item to take home, and find out your own flower superhero strength! We will even see some animals that flowers depend on in order to survive. By the end of our evening, your scouts will know just why flowers and are a part of many cultures around the world. [close]

​​Summer Safaris

Available by request select dates in June, July, and August

Have you ever wanted to take an evening trek through the wild? At the Indianapolis Zoo, you can​! During our Summer Safaris, you will discover the animals of Africa and beyond on this overnight adventure. This summer safari takes place at the Zoo where you will explore animals big and small. You'll take an after hours hike in the African Plains and go behind the scenes in the Zoo Commissary while being guided by one of our knowledgeable educators! ​​

​Important Requirements for Participation 

  • Participants must be at least 6 years old to participate in any Indianapolis Zoo overnight program.
  • All participants must have a signed waiver of liability before beginning the program.  Participants under the age of 18 must have their waiver signed by a parent or legal guardian.

  • All school and scout groups must provide a certificate of liability insurance.

  • Please note that our overnights have minimum attendance requirements (35 for Nocturnal Adventure and Summer Safari and 25 for Bunk for a Badge programs) If you have a smaller group, please consider signing up for a date with another group.

  • Group overnights require a deposit of $100 due within seven days of when the reservation is made with the remaining balance due within 30 days of your adventure to the Zoo.

How to Register

All overnight adventures can be registered through our online reservation system. Use the links below to sign up.

 

Check ​overnight availability​!​​​​​​​   Sign Up Today!

Note: Your online registration will display a cost of $0. You will be sent an updated invoice to reflect your actual total once we receive your registration.

​​For more information, please email ​us or call 317-630-2000 between the hours of 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday

​​Additional Overnights Information 

Your program fees include Zoo and White River Gardens admission, parking fees, all activities, spending the night at the Zoo, and a catered breakfast buffet. [more…]

Just like students, we have a scholastic season and a summer season. During the school year, we offer Nocturnal Adventures which are centered around the student. We also offer Summer Safari programs in warmer months, and Girl Scout Bunk for a Badge programs in the summer. 

Generally, your group will be joined by others. The maximum number of participants for a Bunk for a Badge is 45. For Nocturnal Adventures or Summer Safari, 100 participants is the maximum.

Please note that our overnights also have minimal attendance requirements for overnights, and the Zoo reserves the right to cancel due to participation numbers that do not meet our minimums. We will notify you at least two weeks in advance if we need to cancel. 

Groups sleep on the floor in the Dolphin Gallery. The Gallery is the large room that leads into the dolphin dome, but no one is allowed to sleep in the dome. There are bathroom facilities inside the building, but there are no showers available. The Zoo reserves the right to change your sleeping area as necessary.

Below is a sample itinerary during an Overnight Adventure. Specific activities and schedule for each overnight vary depending upon the program selected. For Bunk for a Badge overnights, girls perform activities to earn a badge. For all overnights, the first group to register gets to select the topic.

DAY ONE

6:30pm​

​Arrive

​6:30-7pm

​Welcome & Orientation

​7:15-7:45pm

​Activity #1

​8-8:30pm

​Activity #2

​8:45-9:15pm

​Activity #3

​9:30-10pm

​Snack & Movie

​10:15pm

​Lights Out

​​DAY TWO ​

​7am​​

​Wake Up Call

​7:30am

​Breakfast

​8:30am

​Zoo Field Trip on Your Own


​​​Please note that the Zoo reserves the right to change any programming as necessary, including anything listed above. Also, please understand that we are not equipped to mix and match the activities. [close]