Santa feeds the reindeer while families watch from the nearby path. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

Santa feeds the reindeer while families watch from the nearby path. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

31st annual Reindeer Festival returns to Cougar Mountain Zoo

Cougar Mountain Zoo will run the 2018 Reindeer Festival every day until Dec. 23.

Returning for its 31st year, Cougar Mountain Zoo’s annual Reindeer Festival is bringing families out for holiday themed events all month long.

Running from Dec. 1 to Dec. 23, the Reindeer Festival lets attendees meet and take pictures with Santa Claus and the Cougar Mountain Zoo’s stable of reindeer. They also host story time for children, letter writing and other holiday themed events around the zoo.

Sasha Hendricks, education curator at the zoo, explained that for the Christmas-themed event the zoo creates festive anecdotes and activities around each of the animals and incorporates each exhibit into the overall Christmas theme.

This year, the zoo introduced two new alpaca to the facility just days before the festival began. On the last few weekends leading up to the 25th, Cougar Mountain Zoo will also bring carolers to perform live.

As a nonprofit organization, the Cougar Mountain Zoo uses events such as the Reindeer Festival as fundraisers to support operations and the animals themselves during the rest of the year, Hendricks explained. On average, the zoo sees about 10,000 attendees in the festival’s 23-day run.

During the Reindeer Festival, the zoo is open seven days a week from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. or dusk. General admission tickets are a minimum donation of $15.50, children tickets at $12.50, and children younger than two get free admission.

For more on the Reindeer Festival, visit cougarmountainzoo.org.

Brothers Noah and Alex Kipper feed apples to the Alpaca. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

Brothers Noah and Alex Kipper feed apples to the Alpaca. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

Raelynn Thukaram meets Santa at the Cougar Mountain Zoo Reindeer Festival. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

Raelynn Thukaram meets Santa at the Cougar Mountain Zoo Reindeer Festival. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

One of the Reindeer stands behind the rest and looks at the crowd of Zoo attendees. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

One of the Reindeer stands behind the rest and looks at the crowd of Zoo attendees. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo

More in Life

Salmon, Science, Suds on Jan. 16

Presentations will focus on improving the health of the Sammamish watershed.

New Year resolution: Love yourself

Love yourself in 2019 and watch the positive changes.

Jiff Searing paints the door frame of the tiny house during the volunteer event on Saturday. Evan Pappas/Staff Photo
Issaquah citizens build a tiny house for the Low Income Housing Institute

An work party was held in Issaquah to build and donate a house to a low income tiny house village.

Diane Gillespie. Photo courtesy of Diane Gillespie
OPINION: Sleeping in troubled times

While adequate sleep is critical to good health and longevity, sleep deprivation is currently on the rise.

31st annual Reindeer Festival returns to Cougar Mountain Zoo

Cougar Mountain Zoo will run the 2018 Reindeer Festival every day until Dec. 23.

KCLS launched its first podcast called “The Desk Set.” The podcast is hosted by librarians Britta Barrett and Emily Calkins. Photo courtesy of “The Desk Set.”
KCLS launches first podcast, The Desk Set

Librarians Britta Barrett and Emily Calking co-host new podcast.

Nancy Stewart will preform her concert series in various libraries throughout King County. Families can visit the KCLS website to find upcoming concerts. Courtesy of Nancy Stewart.
Nancy Stewart’s ‘A Season for Singing’ concert coming to a library near you

King County Library System prepares for its annual Season of Stories and Songs.

Community gathers for annual Day of the Dead celebration

On Nov. 3, communtiy memebrs came out to the Issaquah Latino Club’s annual Day of the Dead event.

Detox for your body and mind

Dr. Allison Apfelbaum is a naturopathic primary care doctor in Woodinville.

Maywood Middle School hosts first district-wide Rubik’s Cube competition

Maywood Middle School hosted more than 60 students from around the Issaquah… Continue reading

Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank plans for facility expansion

To meet the need of the community, the Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank is looking to expand.