Before zoos, humans had to rely on guessing or shaman-induced hallucinations to see what animals looked like. Confirm your suspicions with today's Groupon: for $62, you get a one-year Family Advantage Membership to Como Park Zoo and Conservatory in St. Paul's Como Regional Park (a $125 value). Although admission to the zoo is free ($2 suggested donation for adults; $1 for children), this membership offers several special benefits.
For more than a century, the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory has inspired the local community with a multitude of winged, hooved, and furred beasts. From its humble roots of only three deer roaming inside a fenced-in pasture, the zoo has since expanded to include a slew of awe-inspiring animals and habitats, including a seal island, large-cat exhibit, aquatic life, primates, birds, African hoofed animals, and a polar-bear exhibit, as well as the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory, a half-acre indoor and outdoor nursery blooming with bonsai trees, ferns, orchids, seasonal flowers, and trash-talking tiger lilies.
The Family Advantage membership ($125) lets zoo goers experience the majestic fauna and domesticated centaurs of the Como Zoo, pampering its members with a variety of perks and thrilling readables. Envious mail carriers bestow membership holders with invitations to members-only previews of exhibit openings, early announcements about special events and animal arrivals, and the Como Insider, a quarterly newsletter penned by a Wordsworth–spouting lemur. Card carriers also receive a 15% discount at the gift shop, a 10% discount on year-round educational programs for kids and adults, including summer camps—which boast a Nickelodeon Parents' Picks Award for Best Day Camp—four tickets to ZooBoo, Como's annual Halloween party, and 64 Como Town Amusement Park points, good for rides and attractions. Membership expands access for children and up to two adults beyond Como's dwarf-inhabited borders, granting free or reduced admission to more than 400 zoos and botanical gardens worldwide.
Como Park Zoo and Conservatory was mentioned on Frommer's. Lilaguiders and Google Mappers give it a four star-average. Over 30 Yelpers give it a three and a half star-average, and TripAdvisors give it an average of four owl eyes.