Friends of the National Zoo

Member News and Information


May is Member Month!: May 1-31

For the month of May, we will be celebrating you—our FONZ members. As a member, you will enjoy a 10% discount on all of your food purchases at the Mane Grill, Panda Plaza, and Panda Overlook, and an additional 5% discount on all your gift shop purchases for the entire month! We hope that you will join us for one or all of the exciting events we have planned for you.

Also, join or renew online or during your visit to the park in May and receive an additional two months of membership; that's 14 months of great benefits!

Each membership account allows entry for up to 6 guests. RSVP is not required for events; space is limited and available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Some age restrictions apply. You must present a valid membership card and photo ID to participate in events and redeem discounts.

Enrichment Workshop
May 7, 8:30-9:30 a.m.
Picnic Pavilion

Create your own enrichment item using a variety of materials with the assistance of animal care and park staff! Following the activity, head over to the Small Mammal House, American Trail, or Cheetah Conservation Station to see animals enjoy your handiwork. For adults and children 8 and up; adult supervision is required for children under 18.

Member Look at the Bird House
May 14, 8-10 a.m.
Bird House

Join us for an exclusive look at the Bird House including guided bird walks, crane walks, bird banding and much more! Then continue your visit at Migratory Bird Day for close encounters with live birds, and interactive displays. Please check in at the Bird House entrance to participate in the following events.

  • Guided Bird Walks: 8:30 a.m., 9:00 a.m., 9:30 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.*
  • Bird Banding: 8:00-10:00 a.m.
  • Stanley Crane Walk: 9:00 a.m.*
  • Meet an Oriole: 9:00 a.m.

*Participants must be 8 years of age or older.

How Do You Zoo?
May 14 and 21, 1-4 p.m.
Visitor's Center

Test your skills by completing tasks in four pretend settings within the exhibit. Complete research projects in the Small Mammal House, become an animal chef, examine animal X-rays, and take care of business as a Smithsonian's National Zookeeper. Pass your training and become certified Junior Zoo Staff! There are no live animals in this exhibit and children will not come into contact with live animals.


A Members' Look at Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea: June 11, 2016, 8-10 a.m.

Parrot Fish

Help us celebrate the "Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea" exhibit by attending this special members-only event featuring fun activities, giveaways, and much more. Lead Artist and Executive Director of Washed Ashore Project Angela Haseltine Pozzi will be present to share about her team's extraordinary mission to educate and increase awareness of the impact of marine debris and plastic pollution through art.

Additional details coming soon!


Member Parking Information

A valid FONZ membership card with matching photo ID is required for free or discounted parking. Parking spaces are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Plan to arrive early when weather is nice. National Zoo parking gates open at 8:00 a.m. April through October and many animals are in their outdoor exhibits before 10:00 a.m. during the summer season.

Members who forget their membership cards, do not have matching IDs, or present illegible or expired cards or IDs, will be charged the full parking fee.

Need a temporary replacement card? Please contact the FONZ Membership Office at least 1 business day in advance your visit if notice your card is damaged or missing so that we can send you a temporary membership verification letter via email. The FONZ Membership Office can be reached directly via email or phone at (202) 633-2922, Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm.

Lost your membership cards? Replacement cards are available online for a $5.00 reprinting fee.