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Become a Member

Friends of the National Zoo Membership

A Friends of the National Zoo (FONZ) membership is the best way to support the outstanding wildlife conservation work of the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute and ensure your family’s experience at the Zoo is always special and enriching.

Join today and contribute to the Zoo's commitment to providing leadership in animal care, science, education and sustainability.

As a valued FONZ member, you enjoy a full year of special benefits, such as free parking at certain levels, priority registration to camps and classes and exclusive access to plenty of Zoo events and activities.

Learn more about the exciting possibilities that a FONZ membership has to offer and become a member today!

FAVORITE FONZ MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS:

  • Free parking during your visits to the Zoo
  • Exclusive animal tours and previews
  • Priority access to Zoo camps, classes and events
  • Being a strong supporter of animal conservation

General Membership

Support your free Zoo and become a FONZ member. Enjoy member-only benefits such as free or reduced parking, discounts on your purchases made at the Zoo, a subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine, and invitations to exciting Zoo events.

Starting at $50

Learn more about General Membership

Circle Membership

Circle-level members take their conservation contribution to the next level. From access to special animal tours and a Zoo concierge line to invitations to special Zoo events, they make the most of their Zoo experience, while helping save animals.

Starting at $250

Learn more about Circle Membership

Council Membership

Council members play an integral role in supporting the work we do to save species. As our most elite group of donors, Council members get to experience exclusive Zoo, SCBI, and Smithsonian events, and have the biggest impact on animal conservation.

Starting at $2,500

Learn more about Council Membership

General Membership Options

Cost: $50.00

Don't live nearby? We have a special membership option just for you. The National FONZ membership covers one named adult living more than 200 miles outside of Washington, D.C and offers free or discounted admission to more than 140 zoos and aquariums across the country. This level also features a Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine subscription, and many other discounts for events, camps, and classes at the Zoo.

Benefits

  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

FONZ Birthday Parties

lion carrying present The opportunity to hold a FONZ Birthday Party is a benefit provided to all FONZ members. Parties are for children turning ages 4 to 8, and for a maximum of 16 to 20 children, depending on the party room.
Cost: $55.00

Membership at the Green level covers one named adult for special green benefits such as a paperless subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine, a self-guided Green Tour of the Zoo, and discounts at local eco-friendly retailers.

Benefits

  • Free carousel ride coupon
  • Free fountain drink coupon
  • 10% discount coupons for food purchases
  • 10% discount in Zoo stores
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

FONZ Birthday Parties

lion carrying present The opportunity to hold a FONZ Birthday Party is a benefit provided to all FONZ members. Parties are for children turning ages 4 to 8, and for a maximum of 16 to 20 children, depending on the party room.
Cost: $60.00

You appreciate that by being a FONZ member and a frequent Zoo visitor, you become one of the Zoo's best advocates. In return for your support as a Basic-level member, you get to enjoy a wide variety of exciting member benefits, such as:

Benefits

  • 50% discount for parking at the Zoo
  • Free carousel ride coupon
  • Free fountain drink coupon
  • 10% discount in Zoo stores
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • One named cardholder per household
  • 10% discount coupons for food purchases
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

FONZ Birthday Parties

lion carrying present The opportunity to hold a FONZ Birthday Party is a benefit provided to all FONZ members. Parties are for children turning ages 4 to 8, and for a maximum of 16 to 20 children, depending on the party room.
Cost: $80.00

As a FONZ member at the Premier level, you get to enjoy all the exciting benefits from a Basic membership, and many more. Plus, you know how crucial your membership contribution is to the Zoo's critical work here and abroad, and you want to get even more involved. Some benefit highlights at this level include:

Benefits

  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • Up to two named cardholders per household
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • 10% discount in Zoo stores
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • 10% discount coupons for food purchases
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

FONZ Birthday Parties

lion carrying present The opportunity to hold a FONZ Birthday Party is a benefit provided to all FONZ members. Parties are for children turning ages 4 to 8, and for a maximum of 16 to 20 children, depending on the party room.
Cost: $110.00

Membership at the Premier Plus level is one of the most popular and there's definitely a  good reason. As a Premier Plus member, you get to enjoy all the great benefits from the Premier level, plus some exclusive extras. On top of that, you share in our passion and dedication to support the Zoo in their mission to save species. Some of those key member benefits include:

Benefits

  • Up to three named cardholders per household
  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • Free fountain drink coupons
  • 10% discount in Zoo stores
  • Priority enrollment for birthday parties
  • Priority enrollment for Snore & Roar overnights
  • Priority enrollment for children’s camps
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • 10% discount coupons for food purchases
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

FONZ Birthday Parties

lion carrying present The opportunity to hold a FONZ Birthday Party is a benefit provided to all FONZ members. Parties are for children turning ages 4 to 8, and for a maximum of 16 to 20 children, depending on the party room.

Circle Membership Options

Cost: $250.00

As a member at the Patron Circle level, you get to enjoy all the benefits from the Premier Plus level and many more. Highlights include:

Benefits

  • Choice of one of five Guided Specialty Tours
  • Name recognition in Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • 15% discount in Zoo stores
  • Priority enrollment for children’s camps
  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • 15% discount coupons for food purchases
  • Priority enrollment for birthday parties
  • Priority enrollment for Snore & Roar overnights
  • Up to three named cardholders per household
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • Free fountain drink coupons
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

Guided Specialty Tours

Patrons are invited to choose one of five Guided Specialty Tours: Endangered Species, Hidden Gems, Kiss and Tail, Upper Zoo, and Young Explorers. Each tour provides fascinating glimpses into the cutting-edge science and conservation work that your support makes possible.

Each tour group can have one to ten members. That size fosters the best possible learning environment for you and your guests.

Endangered Species Tour
Looking to learn more about the conservation efforts to save endangered species? This tour explores many of the species at the Smithsonian's National Zoo that are facing, or have faced, the danger of extinction. This tour gives you the opportunity to learn about the amazing ways these animals have adapted to their habitats, how they are being threatened in the wild, and what you can do to help.

Hidden Gems Tour
Do you think you know everything about the giant pandas, elephants, great cats, and the Zoo's other most famous animals? This tour takes you "off-the-beaten path" and introduces you to some of the Zoo's most interesting yet lesser-known animals, such as Andean bears, caracals, and elephant shrews. Who knows? You just may find your new favorite animal!

Kiss and Tail Tour
Looking for something a little more wild? Join this adults-only tour and learn about the fascinating world of animal dating and mating. This tour visits cheetahs, zebras, Przewalski's horses, giant pandas, Big Cats, Small Mammal House, Great Ape House, and Reptile Discovery Center.

Upper Zoo Tour
Want to spend more time learning about animals and less time walking? Join our Upper Zoo Tour. This two-hour tour allows you to really get to know the animals in the three exhibits at the upper part of the Zoo, including cheetahs, zebras, gazelles, Asian small-clawed otters, clouded leopards, sloth bears, and more.

Young Explorers Tour
Have little zoogoers? Take them on a tour designed especially for them! This 90-minute tour designed for children ages 4 to 7 allows your little zoogoers to have an interactive experience, including a chance to touch pelts, feathers and other objects. The outdoor portion of this tour visits the cheetahs, sloth bears, clouded leopards, as well as the Bird House.

Cost: $500.00

As a member at the Sponsor Circle level, you get to enjoy all the benefits from the Patron Circle level and many more. Highlights include:

Benefits

  • One single-use, reserved parking pass, with advance registration
  • Members' breakfast with curator
  • Invitations to VIP exhibit openings
  • Choice of one of five Guided Specialty Tours
  • Name recognition in Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Access to a Zoo donors' concierge line during regular Zoo business hours
  • Opportunities to attend talks with animal experts
  • 15% discount coupons for food purchases
  • 15% discount in Zoo stores
  • Priority enrollment for birthday parties
  • Priority enrollment for Snore & Roar overnights
  • Priority enrollment for children’s camps
  • Up to three named cardholders per household
  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • Free fountain drink coupons
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

Guided Specialty Tours

Patrons are invited to choose one of five Guided Specialty Tours: Endangered Species, Hidden Gems, Kiss and Tail, Upper Zoo, and Young Explorers. Each tour provides fascinating glimpses into the cutting-edge science and conservation work that your support makes possible.

Each tour group can have one to ten members. That size fosters the best possible learning environment for you and your guests.

Endangered Species Tour
Looking to learn more about the conservation efforts to save endangered species? This tour explores many of the species at the Smithsonian's National Zoo that are facing, or have faced, the danger of extinction. This tour gives you the opportunity to learn about the amazing ways these animals have adapted to their habitats, how they are being threatened in the wild, and what you can do to help.

Hidden Gems Tour
Do you think you know everything about the giant pandas, elephants, great cats, and the Zoo's other most famous animals? This tour takes you "off-the-beaten path" and introduces you to some of the Zoo's most interesting yet lesser-known animals, such as Andean bears, caracals, and elephant shrews. Who knows? You just may find your new favorite animal!

Kiss and Tail Tour
Looking for something a little more wild? Join this adults-only tour and learn about the fascinating world of animal dating and mating. This tour visits cheetahs, zebras, Przewalski's horses, giant pandas, Big Cats, Small Mammal House, Great Ape House, and Reptile Discovery Center.

Upper Zoo Tour
Want to spend more time learning about animals and less time walking? Join our Upper Zoo Tour. This two-hour tour allows you to really get to know the animals in the three exhibits at the upper part of the Zoo, including cheetahs, zebras, gazelles, Asian small-clawed otters, clouded leopards, sloth bears, and more.

Young Explorers Tour
Have little zoogoers? Take them on a tour designed especially for them! This 90-minute tour designed for children ages 4 to 7 allows your little zoogoers to have an interactive experience, including a chance to touch pelts, feathers and other objects. The outdoor portion of this tour visits the cheetahs, sloth bears, clouded leopards, as well as the Bird House.

Cost: $1,000.00

As a member at the Benefactor Circle level, you get to enjoy all the benefits from the Sponsor Circle level and many more. Highlights include:

Benefits

  • Exclusive Meet-a-Keeper Tour
  • One single-use, reserved parking pass, with advance registration
  • Access to a Zoo donors' concierge line during regular Zoo business hours
  • Opportunities to attend talks with animal experts
  • Members' breakfast with curator
  • Invitations to VIP exhibit openings
  • Name recognition in Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • 15% discount coupons for food purchases
  • 15% discount in Zoo stores
  • Priority enrollment for birthday parties
  • Priority enrollment for Snore & Roar overnights
  • Priority enrollment for children’s camps
  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • Free fountain drink coupons
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

Exclusive Meet-a-Keeper Tour

This two-hour guided walking tour highlights some of the most exciting and interesting areas of the Smithsonian's National Zoo, and offers you the opportunity to find out more about an exhibit directly from an animal care expert.

Council Membership Options

Cost: $2,500.00

As a member at the Director Council level, you get to enjoy all the benefits from the Benefactor Circle level and many more. Highlights include:

Benefits

  • Exclusive Director Tour
  • Two single-use reserved parking passes with advance registration
  • Invitations to Smithsonian-sponsored events hosted in various cities throughout the country
  • Invitation to exclusive annual dinner honoring Council members
  • Name recognition in annual report of Smithsonian Institution
  • Invitations to private receptions, annual programs and exclusive events sponsored by Smithsonian Institution, including the annual Smithsonian Weekend
  • E-newsletter updates about Smithsonian campaign and Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI)
  • Name recognition in Zoo Visitor Center lobby
  • 20% discount in Zoo stores
  • 20% discount coupons for food purchases
  • Access to a Zoo donors' concierge line during regular Zoo business hours
  • Members' breakfast with curator
  • Invitations to VIP exhibit openings
  • Name recognition in Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Priority enrollment for birthday parties
  • Priority enrollment for Snore & Roar overnights
  • Priority enrollment for children’s camps
  • Up to three named cardholders per household
  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • Free fountain drink coupons
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

The Director Tour

Want to see how the elephant herd starts the day? The Director Tour brings you and your group of up to five people behind the scenes at the Elephant Community Center.

Cost: $5,000.00

As a member at the Explorer Council level, you get to enjoy all the benefits from the Director’s Council level and many more. Highlights include:

Benefits

  • Exclusive Explorer Tour
  • Two single-use reserved parking passes with advance registration
  • Invitation to enroll in annual Conservation Immersion Seminar Weekend at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
  • Invitation to exclusive annual dinner honoring Council members
  • Invitations to private receptions, annual programs and exclusive events sponsored by Smithsonian Institution, including the annual Smithsonian Weekend
  • Name recognition in annual report of Smithsonian Institution
  • E-newsletter updates about Smithsonian campaign and Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI)
  • Name recognition in Zoo Visitor Center lobby
  • 20% discount in Zoo stores
  • 20% discount coupons for food purchases
  • Access to a Zoo donors' concierge line during regular Zoo business hours
  • Opportunities to attend talks with animal experts
  • Members' breakfast with curator
  • Invitations to VIP exhibit openings
  • Name recognition in Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Priority enrollment for birthday parties
  • Priority enrollment for Snore & Roar overnights
  • Priority enrollment for children’s camps
  • Up to three named cardholders per household
  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • Free fountain drink coupons
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

The Explorer Tour

Want to get a look behind the scenes of one of our exhibits? The Explorer Tour brings you and your private group of up to six people behind the scenes at one of our animal exhibits. Explorer Council members can choose between Amazonia, the Small Mammal House, the Kids' Farm, the Bird House, or Asia Trail. OR you may choose a Highlights Tour of the Smithsonian's Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, VA.

The Highlights Tour is a 2-hour driving tour of the 3,200-acre Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute showcases the endangered species research and breeding center, in Front Royal, VA.

Cost: $10,000.00

As a member at the Ambassador Council level, you get to enjoy all the benefits from the Ambassador Council level and many more. Highlights include:

Benefits

  • Exclusive Ambassador Tour
  • Two single-use reserved parking passes with advance registration
  • Invitations to Smithsonian-sponsored events hosted in various cities throughout the country
  • Notification of trips sponsored by Smithsonian Journeys that highlight work of scientists at the Zoo and the Conservation Biology Institute
  • Invitation to enroll in annual Conservation Immersion Seminar Weekend at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
  • Invitation to exclusive annual dinner honoring Council members
  • Invitations to private receptions, annual programs and exclusive events sponsored by Smithsonian Institution, including the annual Smithsonian Weekend
  • Name recognition in annual report of Smithsonian Institution
  • E-newsletter updates about Smithsonian campaign and Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI)
  • Name recognition in Zoo Visitor Center lobby
  • 20% discount in Zoo stores
  • 20% discount coupons for food purchases
  • Access to a Zoo donors' concierge line during regular Zoo business hours
  • Opportunities to attend talks with animal experts
  • Choice of two of five Guided Specialty Tours
  • Members' breakfast with curator
  • Invitations to VIP exhibit openings
  • Choice of one of five Guided Specialty Tours
  • Name recognition in Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Priority enrollment for birthday parties
  • Priority enrollment for Snore & Roar overnights
  • Priority enrollment for children’s camps
  • Up to three named cardholders per household
  • Free parking while visiting the Zoo
  • Discounts on stroller rentals
  • Free carousel ride coupons
  • Free fountain drink coupons
  • Discounts on popular Zoo event tickets
  • Discounts on Zoo camps, classes, and overnights
  • Free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos and aquariums nationwide
  • Invitations to member-only previews and exhibit openings
  • Invitations to special events
  • Access to birthday parties at the Zoo
  • Quarterly subscription to Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine
  • Zoo Friends e-newsletter
  • Access to the FONZ Photo Club
  • Access to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Club ($30)
  • Access to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Club ($30)

The Ambassador Tour

The Ambassador Tour brings you and your private group of up to six people behind the scenes of one of the Zoo's animal exhibits. Members can choose between Big Cats, Asian Elephants, Giant Pandas, Asia Trail, the Reptile House, or Cheetah Conservation Station. OR you may choose a Highlights Tour of the Smithsonian's Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, VA.

The Highlights Tour is a 2-hour driving tour of the 3,200-acre Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute showcases the endangered species research and breeding center, in Front Royal, VA.