ZooTampa at Lowry Park Presents 30th Annual Karamu Gala: Step Into the Wild

The signature black-tie event supports the Zoo’s mission of conservation and education.

Karamu: Step into the Wild, the prestigious annual gala at ZooTampa at Lowry Park, returns Saturday, April 7th with a lavish and wild evening inspired by Florida’s lush fauna and endangered Florida panthers. In its 30th year, Karamu immerses guests into the Florida wilds and the world of mysterious Florida panthers. Attendees will be surrounded by vibrant greens and golds to mimic Florida’s rich landscape. Funds raised at Karamu support the Zoo’s conservation and education programs along with the Zoo’s commitment to preserving our most precious natural resources. The Zoo is thrilled to have Andrew and Emily Wright as co-chairs for this year’s gala.

“Emily and I are proud of this great resource based here in Tampa. We know how much our three girls treasure their experiences at the zoo, and are amazed at all the educational opportunities ZooTampa provides to hundreds of thousands of children all year long. And with a fourth girl on the way we are committed to supporting ZooTampa’s goals,” said Andrew Wright, CEO of Franklin Street.

“ZooTampa is thankful for the support of community leaders such as Mr. Wright. We are proud to be leaders in caring for Florida wildlife and it’s important that we learn about Florida panthers and how we can save these critically endangered animals,” said ZooTampa at Lowry Park’s CEO Joe Couceiro. “Every ticket and donation helps save a Florida panther and provides the Zoo resources to continue to rescue, rehabilitate and release these incredible animals.”

Since 1988, ZooTampa has rescued and rehabilitated 13 endangered Florida panthers, seven within the last six years. With the help of generous donors, the Zoo continues to expand its capacity to provide excellent long-term care to Florida’s threatened and endangered animals, including panthers, manatees, and Key deer.

Karamu, from the Swahili word for “party,” has raised more than $3 million in support of animal care and conservation at ZooTampa over the last 30 years. Special thanks to Franklin Street for entertainment. The Zoo gratefully acknowledges presenting sponsor Tampa Bay Lightning. ZooTampa would also like to thank Regions, Ashley Homestore and theTriad Foundation.

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About ZooTampa at Lowry Park 

ZooTampa at Lowry Park is operated by the Lowry Park Zoological Society, an independent 501(c)(3) charitable organization committed to excellence in conservation, education, recreation and research. The Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and is featured among the “Top 25 Zoos in the U.S” by TripAdvisor (2015). The Zoo is located at 1101 W. Sligh Avenue in Tampa, and is open seven days a week, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. with extended hours for select events. Parking is free. For more, visit www.ZooTampa.org or call (813) 935-8552. Also, find the Zoo on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.