Changes coming to Potter Park Zoo’s souvenir shop, concession stand

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A view of the Potter Park Zoo gift shop which is currently closed.

Michael Downes

A view of the Potter Park Zoo gift shop which is currently closed.

LANSING — Changes are coming for Potter Park Zoo, specifically for the gift shop and concession stand. The shop, once run by the Zoological Society, will be handing the reins over to Ingham County. This move will create new county jobs, including a managerial position.

The change of management at the souvenir shop will allow the Zoological Society to focus on what it does best, fundraising. This will also let the county switch things up in the gift shop, adding new variety to the selection to try and boost sales.

“We are looking to bring in more merchandise and try new things in the gift shop,” said Potter Park Zoo Director Cynthia Wagner. “We want to bring in more fair-trade merchandise and conservation society merchandise.”

The new items won’t only raise money for the zoo, but also for those societies.

The open sign at the Potter Park Zoo is unlit

Michael Downes

The open sign at the Potter Park Zoo is unlit

Changes have been looming for the gift shop because as Richard Snider, a board member for the zoo, said, “Rubber snakes are out.”

The gift shop isn’t the only part of the zoo switching things up.There will also be changes made to the concession stand menu.

Wagner said, “Over the course of the summer we will be looking to try and bring more variety to the menu, including more gluten-free and vegetarian options.”

There won’t be an outside vendor coming in soon, but Wagner hasn’t ruled that out just yet.

It is unknown when the gift shop will be opened. However, the zoo is aiming for everything to be ready by April 1 when the zoo changes its hours.