What: Treetop Trek, a new outdoor attraction featuring obstacle courses
When: 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily; last admission is at 4:15 p.m. It officially opens July 2.
Where: Brevard Zoo, 8225 N. Wickham Road, Melbourne
Cost: Zoo admission is $13.75; $12.75 for seniors; $10.25 for kids ages 2 to 12; free for kids younger than 2. Parking is free. Admission to the Treetop Trek is extra and ranges from $15 to $40.
Info: Call 321-254-9453 or visit www.brevardzoo.org.
Where to zip
Where can people zip-line in Central Florida? Forever Florida, Gatorland and now Brevard Zoo.
•Gatorland, 14501 S. Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando: The Screamin’ Gator Zip line spans 1,200 feet from seven platforms. You zip over crocodiles and more than 130 alligators at about 25 mph. You must weigh at least 60 pounds and no more than 275 pounds. Wear closed-toe shoes and pants. The 90-minute experience costs $69.99, which includes park admission. Call 800-393-5297 or visit www.gatorland.com.
•Florida EcoSafaris at Forever Florida, 4755 N. Kenansville Road, St. Cloud: Zipline Safari reaches heights of 55 feet with speeds up to 25 mph. Enjoy lush greenery and wildlife as you zip through Pine Flatwoods and over wetlands. The experience includes a nature hike, seven zip rides and two sky-bridges over three ecosystems. Also available at Forever Florida are starlight and moonlight zip-line safaris with one set for Saturday, July 9, 16, 23 and 30. The 90-minute ride is $85 for people 10 and older. You must weigh at least 70 pounds; no more than 275 pounds. Call 866-854-3837 or visit www.foreverflorida.com.
The story: The next time you go to the Brevard Zoo, look up. The Treetop Trek is just like it sounds — an outdoor attraction in the trees with three courses based on your age, athletic ability or the mood you’re in. Participants go through a brief training and then are hooked to safety harnesses. The prices below reflect the activities and are not included with zoo admission. However, if you just want to do the obstacle courses, you can. It officially opens Saturday.
Chutes and ladders: This course is for children ages 4 to 8 and at least 3 feet tall but shorter than 5 feet. Wind through 20 treetop games, bridges, ladders, etc., then take a spin on two zip lines or down a zip slide. The lowest point of the course is 2 feet off the ground, with the highest point at 8 feet — but it still is an obstacle course in the air. This one costs $15.
Canopy walk: This course, designated for people 9 and older, is a walk in the park — 20 feet above ground. You’ll get a different view of Brevard County by climbing trees, walking across bridges, logs and more in the La Selva loop. The canopy walk is above the animal enclosures in Latin America. Here’s where you can hang like a monkey and then see the spider monkeys. Other animals you may hover over in the La Selva loop include anteaters and some tropical birds. It’s a 45-minute trek with five treetop challenges and two zip lines. You’ll try to get from one tree to another. Having a little bit of balance helps, but you can always rely on your support cables. It’s $25 per person, and you must be at least 54 inches tall.
Treetop challenge: Hold on to your hat, because this one is a doozy. If you really want an adventure, go on the big adventure. This is a 90-minute obstacle course about 40¤feet off the ground. It takes you from one end of the zoo to the other, out into the wetlands. Features include a shaky log ladder, a rope swing and more. At the end, it brings you back to a zip line over the alligators and crocodiles. The Treetop Challenge includes the canopy walk. It’s $40 to participate and you must be at least 54 inches tall.
Other zoo fun:
•Paws On: The exhibit, which is year-round, features a water play area with a giant, overfilling bucket of water; kiddie pool; aquarium and petting zoo. Grown-ups can enjoy coffee and free Wi-Fi in the shade. This part of the zoo is open during zoo hours, but not during Summer Saturday Nights. There’s no extra cost to splish-splash in Paws On.
•Summer Saturday Nights: The weekend event, which continues from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Saturdays through July 30, offers folks the chance to roam the zoo during cooler evening temps. Part of the fun is listening to local musicians play. Entasys is scheduled to perform Saturday, then it’s the Dixie Hiway Bluegrass Band, Brevard Symphony Orchestra Brass Quintet, BSO Woodwind Trio and Drift Session, respectively. It’s $5; free for zoo members.
Some Saturday night hikes for kids feature games, crafts, animal visits and pizza. Those are from 5 to 9 p.m. for children ages 4 to 12. Bring swimsuits for hikes this Saturday, July 9, 23 and 30.
•Summer camps: These continue through August. On Tuesday, a four-day camp called Animal Adventure gives folks a taste of what it’s like to live in a tough climate and harsh environment. Activities include kayaking and paddleboating. Kids should wear comfortable clothing, closed-toe shoes, shorts and T-shirts. Anyone can sign up for the zoo camps.
For more information, call the zoo or visit www.brevardzoo.org.
Contact Sangalang at 321-242-3630 or firstname.lastname@example.org.