While the actual animals will be kept in cages and behind glass, expect to see plenty of wild costumed creeps and critters at this year’s Creatures and Cocktails event.
It might be at the Oklahoma City Zoological Park and Botanical Garden, but no one under 21 is allowed at this Halloween party. Creatures and Cocktails is returning for its second annual event 7-10 p.m. Friday at the zoo, 2101 NE 50th St.
Party attendees can enjoy drinks, food, games, a wine pull, a costume contest and tunes from a guest DJ. OKC Zoo marketing and special events manager Brianne Hinojosa said the event is for anyone looking for a festive, costumed time out this Halloween season.
“It seems to go toward that millennial-type crowd,” she said, “but it’s really for anyone that’s 21 or older and wants to celebrate Halloween.”
Tickets for the event are $45 and include two drink tickets and food. Additional drink tickets are $5 per drink or $3 per beer. Among the guest’s drink offerings will be its special “voodoo punch,” a spooky misting drink that includes citrus vodka, grenadine, ginger ale, lemon-lime Kool-Aid, rum, Sprite and dry ice.
Designated driver tickets are available for $15. The first 500 tickets purchased include a free event shirt printed by Oklahoma Shirt Company. Net proceeds will go toward OKC Zoo’s conservation efforts.
There is no need to pay for admission to the zoo outside of the party ticket, as the zoo will otherwise be closed for business. The party will take place near the Herpetarium (reptile house) on the west side of the zoo.
For the night, the Herpetarium will transform into a haunted house-like environment sure to keep guests on their toes. While the snakes and reptiles normally found in the enclosure would be enough to frighten some on their own, guests can rest easy knowing all the animals remain behind glass.
“We want to scare people, but not that bad,” Hinojosa said.
Creatures and Cocktails’ primary draw is its costume contest, which includes individual, pair and group costume categories. Those hoping to compete must register in advance — $5 per individual, $10 per pair and $20 per group.
Winners from each category will receive a $50 zoo gift card as a prize (one for the individual, two for the pair and up to six for the group). A grand prize winner will be chosen from the top pick in each category for a two-night getaway package at the Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine, Texas.
When Creatures and Cocktails launched last year, it immediately proved itself to be a popular draw, bringing in more than 200 guests looking to cut loose for Halloween.
The city is full of Halloween themed events, but many of them have a youth or teen slant to them. Hinojosa said Creatures and Cocktails is an attempt to fill the void for an older but hip crowd.
“There’s really not an all-adult Halloween-type event in the city,” she said, “so that’s really what we’re trying to do.”
Visit zoofriends.org to register.
Creatures and Cocktails
7-10 p.m. Friday
Oklahoma City Zoological Park and Botanical Garden
2101 NE 50th St.
Print headline: Scaly scares, Guests will spot plenty of interesting specimens at OKC Zoo’s Creatures and Cocktails event.