1. It is local- If you are in the Carolinas, what a wonderful organization to have in your backyard. Not only is it a well-known park, but they are a “small business”, employs South Carolinians, they give back to the community, and they believe in a cause.
2. Educational Experience- Hollywild offers many educational programs, including the live Creature Feature Shows, Safari Rides, a chance to speak with park staff, and even a webcam to allow you to watch the bears and other animals from home.
3. Summer Programs- Hollywild Animal Park offers a few summer programs that would be perfect for a child/ teenager who is interested in working with animals. The Jr Zookeeper camp may just be perfect for that child. Hollywild also offers Job Shadowing programs, and Internships for older students interested in learning more about the behind-the-scenes care and careers in animal care.
4. Get Up Close- There are many petting areas where you can purchase food and baby food to feed to the animals. Who doesn't love getting up close and personal to animals? (Except that time a Llama licked my face at a petting zoo)
5. Support A Good Cause- When animals have been used in film and television, they cannot go back to the wild, so Hollywild houses them to give them a good home. There are also animals that have been retired from zoos and that were pets who were no longer wanted.
6. Meet Celebrities- The “Zooperstars” that live at Hollywild have been used in over 65 feature films and dozens of television shows. In fact, Tank, now has a home at Hollywild. He is one of the two “working” White Rhinos in the nation.
7. Visit 6 Continents- Hollywild has animals from 6 of the world's continents. These animals find a wonderful home with a community and staff that adores them and does what they need to make sure they are happy and healthy.
8. See Animals Rare In Captivity- Many animals are not often found in captivity, so it is hard to get a chance to see them. Hollywild has some of these animals, including the Syrian Brown Bear (and cubs that were born at Hollywild) and a Waffalo, which is a cross between an African Watusi and a North American Bison (Buffalo).
9. Host An Event- The park has an amphitheater, picnic shelters, a pavilion, and an inside loft area where groups can gather. You can hold homeschool group events, birthday parties, reunions, and company picnics. There are even special programs available for scouts, homeschoolers, community groups, and other organizations.
10. Go On A Safari- The Safari bus rides run daily during the regular season and is sure to captivate your entire family.
While it is genuine fun for your family, make it truly an adventure and educational experience for your homeschool family. The staff at Hollywild and Hollywild.org can help you make the most of your trip. I encourage you to visit at least once if you are in the Carolinas.