Thousandth student visits Hope Elephants
Hope — Hope Elephants reached a milestone Jan. 4 when Tressa Urie of Albany, Vt. became the 1,000th schoolchild to visit the facility since the arrival of Rosie and Opal Oct. 21.
Tressa, a 6-year-old kindergartener from the Albany Community School traveled with her mother, Kristin Urie, just to see the elephants. Tressa said she liked both Opal and Rosie equally and liked their trunks the most.
Kristin Urie said they left Tressa’s 3-year-old triplet siblings, Maeda, Linden and Nell, at home with their papa but will certainly bring them along on their next trip to Hope Elephants.
Tressa was presented with a Hope Elephants T-shirt; she chose a pink one.
Hope Elephants encourages visits by individuals, groups, and school classes at 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. daily except Thursdays, but because it is not an entertainment venue, walk-up visitors are not allowed. Arrangements can be made for a scheduled presentation by calling 619-4801 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hope Elephants never charges a fee for a visit, but they do request that individual visitors and family groups consider making a suggested donation. These donations are used to fund care of the resident elephants, maintain the facilities and deliver educational programming. Hope Elephants is a 501(c)(3) organization.
Currently, Rosie and Opal, a pair of aging and injured retired circus elephants, receive state-of-the-art physical therapy and nutritional support in a purpose-built habitat dedicated to their needs. School children and others of all ages experience elephants in a way unavailable anywhere else in the country. The goal of Hope Elephants' educational program is to inspire visitors to act upon their experience and find their own path to participate in wildlife conservation.