Maine Wildlife Park – 2012 Year in Review
The Maine Wildlife Park hosted more than 106,000 visitors in 2012 – breaking several records. For starters, it represented a 10 percent increase from 2011. Better yet, it made for a new all-time-record for paid admission and total revenue! A closer look reveals some of the best-performing sales categories of 2012, with Senior Citizen, Group and Tour admission sales setting new records. We also saw a 28 percent increase in school children coming for our wildlife educational programming.
We completed of one of our most unique and ambitious projects in park history – the new state of the art cougar exhibit,enjoyed by both the big cats and visitors alike.
Some of the park’s special programs also broke records in 2012. We’ve seen increased interest in the park as a birthday or family party destination, with shelter rentals steadily increasing over the years. Also, the Summer Photopass program nearly doubled in participants from last year, setting a new record as well.
Of course, no year is perfect, and our three biggest special events showed significant decreases in attendance. The Native American Pow-Wow and Halloween-Fest were plagued by poor weather. However, there was an event turnout “rainbow” with the park’s first “North Woods Law” feature. More than 1,100 visitors showed up to meet their favorite NWL Star for pictures and autographs on a Thursday afternoon. Needless to say, this event has already been scheduled again for 2013!
The Nature Store had a record-breaking season, increasing net revenue by 48% over 2011! The Friend’s Snack Shack also did very well financially and kept our visitors happy with a full variety of snacks and treats. Both of these establishments have demonstrated their adaptability over the years by changing their offering to best suit the interests of our visitors. The park’s vending machines and feed dispensers also produced record-high revenue in 2012.
It never gets boring at the park during the winter; in fact it seems we are just as busy – but in different ways. The park’s full time staff is joined by workers from the Maine Correctional Center to work on projects like building a new small shelter and a modified ground bird display, improving water systems, refurbishing signage, replacing fencing and siding, and much more.
The wildlife park is preparing for some much larger projects this year, including a larger, more modern and separate restroom building. A conceptual design has been completed for a new Canada lynx enclosure. And our visitors can expect to see all new wildlife species signs in 2013.
We hope you’ll make a plan to visit us this summer – the scheduled opening date is Saturday, April 13th, (weather permitting and just in time for school vacation). Stay posted on our website at www.mainewildlifepark.com; or visit us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/