Philadelphia Zoo and PECO launch PECO Smart Ideas Challenge

Working together to ‘Save Energy to Save Wildlife’

PHILADELPHIA (February 10, 2014) – Philadelphia Zoo is partnering with PECO to ‘Save Energy to Save Wildlife.’ Together the two organizations launched the PECO Smart Ideas Challenge® -- an in-depth curriculum experience focused on reinforcing energy conservation. More than 30,000 students from Title I schools across the region will be visiting the Zoo now through April 30th free of admission to participate in program.

The curriculum invites students to take a journey throughout the Zoo to discover how both animals and people can have an energy-saving impact. Action Chats give students an opportunity to learn about the unique adaptations of animals, such as burrowing deep underground to stay warm or utilizing thick layers of fat called blubber, that allow them to save energy. Students will learn about small changes they can make every day to make a difference for the planet -- from turning off water while brushing their teeth, to unplugging the phone charger, to recycling plastic bottles. At the program’s conclusion, students are rewarded with a PECO Smart Ideas Challenge® backpack.

“We have a very strong commitment to conservation at Philadelphia Zoo, and we have both a responsibility and a unique opportunity to foster future wildlife stewards,” says Kristen Waldron, Director of Conservation Education and Integration, Philadelphia Zoo. “It is with that responsibility in mind that we joined forces with PECO to create a program that perpetuates the ‘Saving Energy to Save Wildlife’ message we deliver in the new KidZooU and Zoo-wide by connecting visitors to our majestic animals, who are truly ambassadors for conservation action.”

America's first zoo and one of the region's foremost conservation organizations, the Philadelphia Zoo is home to nearly 1,300 animals, many rare and endangered. By connecting people with wildlife, the Philadelphia Zoo creates joyful discovery and inspires action for animals and habitats. The Philadelphia region’s leading family destination, the Zoo welcomed more than 1.2 million visitors last year. The Philadelphia Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. For more information on the Philadelphia Zoo, as well as to purchase and print tickets online, visit us at Philadelphia Zoo is a non-smoking facility.