All activities are subject to animal participation. Please note that the experience may be ended without refunds at any time if guests do not follow staff instructions.
What happens after I book an Experience?
All Backstage Pass Experience ticket holders will receive a confirmation email upon purchase. Then. 7 – 10 days prior to your experience, your Zoo guide will reach out to you via email to:
- Introduce themselves as your guide
- Confirm the date time and number of guests in your party
- Provide you with a copy of the Zoo’s behind the scenes waiver
- Review details for your experience including where to meet and at what time
- Review the rules for your experience
- Provide any further details they may have regarding your experience
If you do not receive a confirmation or are not contacted by a Zoo guide prior to your experience, please reach out to us at (502) 238-5358 as this may indicate an error with your purchase.
When will my experience occur?
Backstage Pass Experiences occur throughout the week. Please check specific details for each experience for start times. Guests must purchase tickets at least 24 hours in advance and arrive 10 minutes prior to the start of the experience. All Backstage Pass Experience guests should meet their guide on the Zoo’s plaza next to the Zoo Map.
How long is my experience?
Backstage Pass Experiences last approximately 45 minutes.
Is this a walking tour?
Backstage Pass Experiences include some walking to and from animal areas, but guests will be primarily transported via golf cart by your Zoo guide.
Where do we meet for the experience?
Guests are expected to meet their guide next to the Zoo’s plaza map 10 minutes prior to the experience. The estimated time to get from the parking lot to the Zoo’s plaza is around 10 – 15 minutes depending on the day.
What happens if I am late to my experience?
Experiences will begin on time. Guests who are not at the location by the start of the tour may forfeit their experience.
How many people can participate in an experience?
Each Backstage Pass Experience is limited to five (5) guests per session. Guests who do not purchase all 5 tickets may have a shared experience with guests from another party. Guests that are not a part of the tour will not be permitted to watch the experience or tag along with the group. Guests under the age of 18 are required to be accompanied by a parent or guardian with a separate ticket.
Who can participate in an experience?
All experiences are available for persons aged 6 or older. Guests under the age of 18 will need a parent or guardian to accompany them on the tour with a separate ticket. Infants in arms, toddlers or any children under age 6 will not be admitted.
What if there is bad weather?
Backstage Pass Experiences are rain or shine. In case of inclement weather that requires the Zoo to close to the public, experiences will be canceled, and guests will be notified in advance.
How should I dress?
All Backstage Pass Experiences occur either partially or completely outdoors and may have wet or slick surfaces. Guests should wear closed-toe, non-slip, gym-style shoes and season appropriate outerwear as some walking is required as a part of the tour. Guests will be required to wear a mask when visiting the Zoo’s Black-Footed Ferret Conservation Center. If you do not have a mask, one will be provided for you.
What should I bring?
The Zoo does not have secure areas to hold belongings such as purses, umbrellas, wagons, hats, water bottles or sunscreen. All personal items must be carried. Cameras are permitted and encouraged but please refrain from using flash photography.
Are there any restrictions on photography or videography?.
The Louisville Zoo does not allow live-streaming during the Backstage Pass Experience. Photos and video may be taken in specific areas which will be identified by your guide. Also, lighting equipment is not allowed.
Are there any restrictions for persons with disabilities?
To ensure that guests with disabilities can fully enjoy their visit, please email email@example.com before purchasing tickets as there may be some areas that are not wheelchair accessible.
Backstage Pass Experiences occur in areas where our animal ambassadors live: strong animal odors as well as food smells such as fish are common and should be expected.
What is the Cost of a Backstage Pass Experience?
Backstage Pass Experiences with the Zoo’s rhino, Aldabra tortoise and penguin are $90 per ticket. Backstage Pass Experiences with the Zoo’s pinnipeds are $120 per ticket and include a full behind-the-scenes tour of the Glacier Run seal and sea lion facilities including the indoor pools, prep kitchen and outdoor decks.
Backstage Pass Experience tickets do not include Zoo admission. An admission ticket and parking fee is required for guests who are not members. We recommend arriving early to enjoy the Zoo before your scheduled tour. General admission tickets may be purchased online in advance or on the day of your experience at the admission windows. Please note that the Zoo experiences long lines in the spring and summer. Please plan accordingly.
Can I purchase a Backstage Pass Experience as a gift?
YES! Backstage Pass Experience tickets can be transferred to another person. In the case of a ticket transfer, the Zoo must be notified in writing of the new ticket holder to ensure they are able to participate. To notify the Zoo of a ticket transfer, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What if I need to cancel my experience?
Cancellations made 8 or more weeks in advance will be refunded. Cancellations made less than 8 weeks in advance of your experience will not be refunded. If you are unable to attend your experience, you may transfer your ticket(s) to another person. In the case of a ticket transfer, the Zoo must be notified in writing of the new ticket holder to ensure they are able to participate. To notify the Zoo of a ticket transfer, please email us at email@example.com.
Can I reschedule my Backstage Pass Experience?
Backstage Pass Experiences cannot be rescheduled. If you are unable to attend your experience, you may transfer your ticket(s) to another person. In the case of a ticket transfer, the Zoo must be notified in writing of the new ticket holder to ensure they are able to participate. To notify the Zoo of a ticket transfer, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- All activities are subject to animal participation.
- We ask that guests be respectful of the animals at all times. Guests should not approach an animal unless they have been instructed to by Zoo staff.
- Please refrain from making loud noises or sudden movements that may startle the animals as this may have a negative impact your experience. All guests are required to respect Zoo animal barriers at all times. Zoo animal barriers are for the safety of our animals and Zoo guests. Guests should not enter any areas unless their guide has instructed them to do so.
- Once your experience has started, guests will be expected to remain with their guide. Guests may not leave the group for any reason. If a guest leaves the group during an experience, they may not be permitted to rejoin the tour.
- All guests participating as a part of a Backstage Pass Experience must complete a Zoo behind-the-scenes waiver. An electronic waiver will be sent to you by your Zoo guide prior to your tour. Signed electronic waivers may be emailed to email@example.com prior to your visit, or you may bring them with you on the day of your experience. Children ages 6 – 18 must have a completed waiver signed by a consenting adult.
- Guests that are not a part of the tour will not be permitted to participate in the experience or tag along with the group.
- Please be respectful of other guests on your tour. We ask that you refrain from any behavior that may be a distraction or considered inappropriate. Cell phones should be placed on silent during the experience. Please refrain from taking phone calls during experiences.
- Cameras are permitted but we ask you do not use flash photography.
- Guests with children should be responsible for them at all times. Children may not run or play in behind-the-scenes areas.
- Food and drinks are not permitted in behind-the-scenes areas.
- Guests should be respectful of Zoo staff instructions at all times. Please note that the experience may be ended without refunds at any time if guests do not follow staff instructions.
|Join us for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! Learn about the importance of the Zoo’s conservation work, how our dedicated keeper staff care for the Zoo’s animals and get VIP access to areas not available to the public.|
Each Backstage Pass Experience is approximately 45-minutes long and includes a guided cart tour with an experienced Zoo staff member, a visit to the Zoo’s Black-Footed Ferret Conservation Center, a behind-the-scenes visit to one of the Zoo’s animal areas, and an up-close experience with Zoo animals and their care team.