President

Jungle Island Makeover Will Place Visitors in the Wild

The new design will give visitors a hands-on jungle experience.

A multi-million dollar makeover is in the works for Jungle Island.

The new vision is to provide visitors with a hands-on jungle experience from the moment they walk in. The park’s president John Dunlap said that was a request made by his own son.

"My child's first visit to the park he said, 'daddy, I want to go here, I want to go the jungle,' and so our goal is to get people here faster to move our guests, within their first few steps through the front door, directly into an immersive jungle environment."

To do that, the current entry will come down to make way for a mixed-use entrance which will feature a restaurant, and views of a flamingo nesting area.

The renderings show the park surroundings will resemble the backdrop of an action movie with weathered walls built like an ancient temple and covered in jungle overgrowth.
The park staff is also working to create a sense of education through adventure.

"We aren't learning experientially by jumping and climbing," Dunlap said. "We spent a lot of our time talking about how we can engage people that way here."

Park-goers can look forward to zip lining through the Jungle Island’s tree canopies, and along its bay-side views. Another new attraction promises to give the public a close-up look at orangutans in a way they have never seen before.

Jungle Island plans to remain open during the renovations which are expected to take as many as five years.
 

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