More on those super stylin’ elephants at the Honolulu Zoo. Mari and Vaigai have already been decked out with an African Savanna type terrain, which includes a couple of pools and lots of room to roam.

Now it’s the humans turn, as they get a pavilion of their own. It will keep visitors out of the sun and the rain but most importantly, give them an even better view of the zoo’s largest creatures, according to a release.

When I interviewed former zoo director Manuel Mollinedo about the new elephant exhibit a few years ago, I couldn’t help but notice how hot it was. We stood right in front of the exhibit, where the public would be viewing the elephants. The afternoon sun beamed on my back as I tried my best to hold the video camera with moist palms. Manuel looked a little shiny himself, as the poor thing had the sun right on his face.

I could see how visitors might experience similar weather, especially in Hawaii, where it’s almost always warm and sunny. As nice as this weather is for the beach, it totally sucks for the zoo, so having some shade is a welcomed treat for visitors. The pavilion will allow them to hang out a little longer and really enjoy these beautiful creatures.

It should be done by mid-September, but what’s even cooler is that the pavilion will get the community involved. Six local schools will decorate columns holding up the roof, while a local artist designs the floor mural. Lots of great things happening at the Honolulu Zoo. Can’t wait to check it out!

HONOLULU ZOO • 151 Kapahulu Ave., Honolulu, HI 96815 • Open 9am-430pm daily, closed Christmas Day • 808-971-7171 • • See site for admission fees • Metered parking available; Near bus route


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