Roger Reinert and Erik Simonson had it right in their May 24 Budgeteer article. ("What is the future of the Lake Superior Zoo?") The integrity of the zoo as a zoo must be maintained. I am always leery of the recommendations of consultants who sometimes are used to confirm what some individuals in charge already have in mind. Duluth does not need more parks.
There was an excellent advertisement in December's Minnesota Monthly, placed by the Minnesota Zoo on "Why Zoos Matter." The article mentions that the poet Robert Bly said, "Our country developed a neurosis when we lost touch with large animals." It also reminds us that since 1970, more than half the world's wildlife has been lost.
People are making fewer and fewer personal connections with nature and wildlife. If we become almost totally disassociated with them, there may be even less concern. It is good to be reminded that we are not the only creatures on the planet. Displaying just a few barnyard and/or local animals will just not cut it.
The ultimate solution is to find new revenue streams. The proposed placement of the walkway directly through the heart of the zoo could drastically reduce paid admissions and there is a good alternative around the perimeter. We have an excellent zoo board. Let the creativity flow. The dollars spent on consultants could have been used to assist the zoo instead.