Oakland, California (EastBayDaily) — On Saturday, May 16, Oakland Zoo invites the public to attend an evening engagement inspired by elephants. Guest speaker Amy Baird, Associate Director of Big Life Foundation, will tell a captivating story of how her conservation organization became the first group in East Africa to coordinate anti-poaching teams operating on both sides of the Kenya-Tanzania border. "As elephants face tremendous pressures from poaching and human wildlife conflict, the Oakland Zoo supports our efforts to stop poaching in East Africa and support local communities, so that we can continue to celebrate elephants for generations to come," said Amy Baird, Associate Director of Big Life Foundation. Through her presentation, an emotional story will unfold about Big Life co-founder, Nick Brandt, a wildlife photographer, who witnessed gun shots and the aftermath of elephant killings. His first-hand experiences motivated him to team up with Richard Bonham, conservationist and co-founder of Big Life; together, the two set out to take action and create a conservation organization that puts boots on the ground to help save the world’s largest land mammal from extinction.
In addition to the presentation, Oakland Zoo will host a silent auction and reception. The evening will include exquisite arrays of appetizers and refreshing beverages as guests intermingle while browsing dozens of auction items donated from Bay Area restaurants, breweries, shops, and artists. Bidders will have a vast variety of goods to choose from, such as, gift certificates, local winery gift baskets, sports events tickets, hand-crafted art, art created by animals, and behind-the-scenes zoo experiences. “Oakland Zoo is dedicated to protecting animals in the wild; Celebrating Elephants is an example of that work, said Colleen Kinzley, Director of Animal Care, Conservation, and Research. “Through this annual event, we raise awareness and funds that directly benefit African elephants in Kenya.”
An evening of “Celebrating Elephants” begins at 6:00pm in the Zoo’s Zimmer Auditorium with a reception and silent auction, followed by a presentation at 7:00pm. The cost for this event is a sliding scale of $40 – $96 per person. All proceeds raised will support Amboseli Trust for Elephants (http://www.elephanttrust.org). Tickets are purchased at the door. For more information, please call 510-632-9525, ext 167 or go to http://www.oaklandzoo.org.
96 ELEPHANTS: The 19th annual Celebrating Elephants event will be to raise awareness of “AB96-Ivory belongs on Elephants.” California is the second largest hub for ivory sales in the United States – and it’s supporting the slaughter of elephants thousands of miles away in Africa. Californians have an opportunity to lead during this critical time for elephants. By banning the sale of all elephant ivory and ivory products, California can raise consumer awareness, reduce poaching pressures on elephants, and set a critical example for other countries. Please, Californians, ask your state lawmakers to support AB96. This bill is named for the 96 elephants killed each day in the name of ivory. Help pass legislation to ban ivory sales in our State, go to the below link and sign the letter: https://secure3.convio.net/wcs/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=687
ABOUT OAKLAND ZOO: The Bay Area’s award-winning Oakland Zoo is home to more than 660 native and exotic animals. The Zoo offers many educational programs and kid’s activities perfect for science field trips, family day trips and exciting birthday parties. Oakland Zoo is dedicated to wildlife conservation onsite and worldwide. Nestled in the Oakland Hills, in 500-acre Knowland Park, the Zoo is located at 9777 Golf Links Road, off Highway 580. The East Bay Zoological Society (Oakland Zoo) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization supported in part by members, contributions, the City of Oakland and the East Bay Regional Parks. For more information please visit our website at http://www.oaklandzoo.org.
Erin Harrison, Senior Manager, Communications