Smithsonian National Zoological Park l Friends of the National Zoo



Zoo's first Instameet “#ZooMeet”

February 1, 2014 from 8 to 8:30 a.m.

A small group of Instagrammers will get special access to the David M. Rubenstein Giant Panda Habitat to see giant panda cub Bao Bao and meet and ask questions of her team of panda keepers and biologists.

Event hashtag: #ZooMeet #Panda

Registration for this event begins January 15 and ends at 11:59 p.m. on January 21.

Thirty participants will be selected from registrants to attend the event and will be notified of their selection by January 27. Timed entry is from 8 to 8:30 a.m.

What will I experience at the Instameet?

Participants in the Instameet or “#ZooMeet” will get special access to enter the David M. Rubenstein Panda Habitat to see and take photos of giant panda cub Bao Bao for your personal use. You will meet National Zoo panda keepers and biologists who will be on hand to answer questions and talk more about Bao Bao and her development.


What is an Instameet?

An Instameet is when a group of people get together and post to Instagram on a certain subject. The National Zoo’s Instameet or “#ZooMeet” provides an opportunity to see and take photos of Bao Bao and learn more about her development from panda experts including the Zoo’s continued work to help save this endangered species.

How do I register?

Registration opens for a set period of time from January 15 through January 21. Instameet participants are selected from those who sign up on this page by January 21, 2014. Additional registrants are placed on a waitlist and will be notified by January 27, 2014.

Register here.

Please note that in addition to the registration form, applicants are asked to create and submit a 15-second Instavideo on why they should be selected and post to their Instagram account tagging @SmithsonianZoo, using #Zoomeet, or submit via Instagram direct video.

Do I need to have an Instagram account to register for the Smithsonian’s National Zoo Instameet?

Yes, National Zoo Instameets are designed for active Instagrammers who follow @SmithsonianZoo. The goal of the Zoo’s first Instameet is to provide an intimate opportunity for members of our public to learn more about giant panda cub Bao Bao, the Zoo’s efforts to save this species and share the experience with their followers.

What are Smithsonian’s National Zoo Instameet registration requirements?

By registering for Smithsonian’s National Zoo Instameet, you are indicating your intention to travel to the site of the event and attend in person. You are responsible for your own expenses for travel, accommodation, food and other amenities. You will need to provide government-issued identification (driver's license or passport) that matches the name provided on the registration.

Can I register if I am not a U.S. citizen?

Yes, non-U.S. citizens may register to attend the National Zoo Instameet.

When and how will I know if I am selected?

After registration closes, an e-mail with confirmation information and additional instructions will be sent to those selected as well as those on the waitlist. If you are on the waitlist, you may receive an invitation only if someone on the original selection list cancels and a space opens up.

What if I cannot travel to the Instameet?

If you cannot attend in person, please do not register for the Instameet. However, you can still plan to follow along with the event on Instagram via @SmithsonianZoo or using the event hashtag provided above.

Can I bring friends or family members to the Instameet with me?

No, Instameet activities may only be attended by selected participants.

What else should I know?

You will be asked to sign a release form allowing Smithsonian Friends of the National Zoo and third parties authorized by the Smithsonian to use your Instagrammed images or video taken of you during the event.

Have a question or need more information? Email us.

The Fine Print (Terms & Conditions):

Entrants must have an active Instagram account that follows @SmithsonianZoo to be eligible for selection to attend the Instameet. Registration is for one person only and is not transferable.

If you are selected for the Instameet but cannot attend, please notify Smithsonian by January 29, 2014, and your space will be given to another registrant on the waitlist.

Instameet participants are responsible for their own expenses for travel, accommodations, food and incidentals (unless otherwise indicated, e.g. food, may be provided for a specific event). Please notify Smithsonian if you have any special needs, dietary requirements, or accessibility requirements prior to arriving for the event.

Some events and staff scheduled to appear at the Instameet are subject to change without notice. Smithsonian is not responsible for injury, loss or damage incurred as a result of attending. Smithsonian reserves the right to cancel the event with limited or no notice, to exclude any person whose actions interfere with the proper operation of the Tweetup, do not comply with Smithsonian policies or specific instructions when behind the scenes, or otherwise act in an inappropriate or disruptive manner. All decisions of Smithsonian are final.

On the day of the Instameet, registrants must show a government issued ID (driver's license or passport) that matches the name provided on the registration. Those without proper identification cannot be admitted. All Instameet participants will be required to sign a release form allowing Smithsonian, Friends of the National Zoo and third parties authorized by Smithsonian to use images or video taken of you and Instagram posts by you during the event.