Rent the Zoo

Rent the Zoo

Everything is unique when using a rental facility at Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium. It just isn't your typical function space. The Zoo comes with built in entertainment for your guests. Appetizers while gazing at penguins, or dinner and drinks with the white-handed gibbons in the Lied Jungle® makes for an exceptional atmosphere. Contact the Events Department at (402) 738-2088 or events@OmahaZoo.com for more information or to set up a site tour.

Daytime Venues

Daytime venues are available from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily.  Some tables and chairs are included in the rental fees depending on the space selected. For daytime rentals and events, all food and beverage needs will be fulfilled by Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium®'s TreeTops Catering Department. Outside catering is not allowed for daytime events. Please call (402) 738-2088 for details.

Zoo admission is included with all indoor daytime venues.

Aquarium Conference Center

Rental Fee: $2,000
The uniquely designed venue transports guests to a world under the sea with special features including a 24-foot acrylic tropical reef aquarium and 75-foot modular arts wave-like wall that can be illuminated by a variety of colored lights. The conference center has 5,302-square-feet of conference space and seating for up to 325 guests available. The Suzanne and Walter Scott Aquarium's Aquarium Conference Center can be divided into smaller spaces to best accommodate your group's size. Tables and chairs as well as Wi-Fi and audio visual equipment are included in the rental of this space. Three-hundred admission tickets included with rental.

Venues Located Aquarium Conference Center

  • Entire Aquarium Conference Center (Rounds: 325; Business Rounds: 214; Classroom-style: 258 ): 300 admission tickets; $2,000
  • Queen Angel Fish A (Rounds: 40; Business Rounds: 30; Classroom-style: 24): 20 admission tickets; $500   
  • Queen Angel Fish B (Rounds: 40; Business Rounds: 25; Classroom-style: 24): 20 admission tickets; $300   
  • Queen Angel Fish A/B (Rounds: 80; Business Rounds: 65; Classroom-style: 66): 60 admission tickets; $750  
  • Grand Reef (Rounds: 112; Business Rounds: 85; Classroom-style: 90): 100 admission tickets; $1,500
  • Clown Trigger Fish (Rounds 80; Business Rounds: 65; Classroom-style: 63): 60 admission tickets; $750

Durham Lodge and Birthday House

Rental Fee: $600
(Banquet-style: 60; Classroom-style: 54)
Let your imagination run wild! With a large private deck and fireplace, this building is perfect for corporate retreats. Located near the Lied Jungle, it can also be rented by small groups in the evening. Tables and chairs as well as Wi-Fi and some audio visual equipment are included in the rental fee. 60 admission tickets included with rental.

Desert Dome Classroom

Rental Fee: $300
(Banquet-style: 30; Classroom-style: 30)    
Located inside the Desert Dome, this is the perfect space for a small social gathering or meeting. Tables and Chairs are included in the rental of this space. Thirty admission tickets included with rental.

Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom Pavilion Auditorium

Rental Fee: $750
(Seats: 312)
Located in the Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom Pavilion, this is the perfect place for a speaker, presentation or awards ceremony. Tables, Chairs and some audiovisual equipment are included in the rental of this space. 312 admission tickets included with rental.

Garden Classroom

Rental Fee: $500
(Banquet-style: 40; Classroom-style: 36)
Newly opened in the spring of 2014 and located in the Garden of the Senses, the Garden Classroom is a quaint indoor space featuring murals of the African Grassland. This space is available daily in June and July, and available weekends only August through May. Tables and chairs, as well as some audio visual equipment are included in the rental fee. Forty admission tickets included with rental.

Add a wild twist to your event with an up close and personal educational encounter with one of the Zoo’s Animal Ambassadors!

Evening Venues

African Lodge/Elephant Family Quarters                           

Rental Fee: $4,500
Journey to Africa for your next gathering or celebration! Modeled after lodges found in the African savanna, the African Lodge features a high-pitched roof lined with plastic thatch shingles, uniquely themed lighting fixtures and a rounded dining space with an oversized faux stone fireplace. Indoor seating for 100, with additional outdoor seating, overlooks the four-acre elephant exhibit and wading pool.  Spacious restrooms are also located in the area. To enhance the experience, guests are able to enjoy viewing the elephant family’s new quarters. Rental includes a tram. The African Lodge is only available April – October.

Durham TreeTops Restaurant/Lied Jungle®

Rental Fee: $2,500
Best dining venue in Omaha! With a 90-foot window overlooking the world’s largest indoor rainforest, this three-tiered restaurant has seating for up to 284 guests for a dinner or a cocktail reception. The Lied Jungle is open until 8 p.m. for guests to walk through. Tables, chairs and microphone are available.

Rental Fee(s):
Durham TreeTops Restaurant: $1,500
Lied Jungle (add-on only): $1,000

Suzanne and Walter Scott Aquarium 

Rental Fee: $3,000
Dine among sharks, rays, penguins and other sea creatures. Seating is available for up to 60 guests in the shark tunnel and up to 100 throughout the Scott Aquarium. Larger groups can be accommodated. for a cocktail reception. Tables and chairs are available.

Aquarium Conference Center

Rental Fee: $3,500
This uniquely designed ballroom transports guests to a world under the sea! Seating is available for up to 325 guests and features a 24 foot acrylic tropical reef aquarium and 75 foot modular arts wave-like wall that can be illuminated by a variety of colored lights. Wi-Fi and audio visual equipment are included in the rental fee.

Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom Pavilion                         

Rental Fee: $1,500
Among wild and exotic creatures, treat up to 80 guests to a sit down dinner or 300 for a cocktail reception. This venue also includes an auditorium that seats 312.

Durham Lodge/Birthday House                                           

Rental Fee: $600
With a large private deck and fireplace, this space is perfect for an intimate retreat.  Located near the Lied Jungle® this venue has enough space to accommodate 60 guests for a sit-down dinner and up to 85 for a cocktail reception. Tables and chairs as well as Wi-Fi and some audio visual equipment are included in the rental fee.

Garden of the Senses

Rental Fee: $1,500
Colorful gardens, bronze animal sculptures and exotic birds make this a charming venue for an event. Rental includes a tram from 6 - 9 p.m. The Garden is only available May 1 – September 30 and has limited patio seating available. It is ideal for groups of approximately 200 or less. The Garden Classroom, a quaint indoor space featuring murals of the African Grasslands and restrooms, offers space for 50 guests to gather. This building is included with the rental of the Garden of the Senses.

Lozier IMAX® Theater

Rental Fee: $2,000
Experience a party of IMAX proportions! The IMAX lobby can accommodate up to 200 guests for a cocktail reception or 72 for a sit-down dinner. Rental fee includes an exclusive showing of an IMAX film, of your choice, from our film library.

Add a wild twist to your event with an up-close and personal educational encounter with one of the Zoo’s Animal Ambassadors!

Weddings

African Lodge/Elephant Family Quarters

Rental Fee: $5,000
Journey to Africa for your next gathering or celebration! Modeled after lodges found in the African savanna, the African Lodge features a high-pitched roof lined with plastic thatch shingles, uniquely themed lighting fixtures and a rounded dining space with an oversized faux stone fireplace. Indoor seating for 100, with additional outdoor seating, overlooks the four-acre elephant exhibit and wading pool.  Spacious restrooms are also located in the area. To enhance the experience, guests are able to enjoy viewing the elephant family’s new quarters. Rental includes a tram. The African Lodge is only available April – October.

Durham TreeTops Restaurant/Lied Jungle®                        

Rental Fee: $3,000
Best dining venue in Omaha! With a 90-foot window overlooking the North America's largest indoor rainforest, this three-tiered restaurant has seating for up to 216 guests for a dinner, including space for a dance area, DJ, and cake table. Groups of up to 284 guests can be hosted for a cocktail reception. The Lied Jungle is open until 8 p.m. for guests to walk through. Tables, chairs and microphone are available.

Rental Fee(s):
Durham TreeTops Restaurant: $2,500
Lied Jungle (add-on only): $1,000

Suzanne and Walter Scott Aquarium

Rental Fee: $3,500
Dine among sharks, rays, penguins and other sea creatures. Seating is available for up to 90 guests in the shark tunnel or 200 for a cocktail reception. Tables and chairs are available.

Aquarium Conference Center              

Rental Fee: $4,000
This uniquely designed ballroom transports guests to a world under the sea! Seating is available for up to 300 guests including space for a dance area, DJ and cake table. This space features a 24-foot acrylic tropical reef aquarium and 75-foot modular arts wave-like wall that can be illuminated by a variety of colored lights to match your wedding color scheme. Wi-Fi and audio visual equipment are available and included in the rental fee. Tables and chairs are available.

Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom Pavilion

Rental Fee: $2,000
Among wild and exotic creatures, treat up to 80 guests to a sit down dinner or 300 for a cocktail reception. This venue also includes an auditorium that seats 312.

Durham Lodge/Birthday House

Rental Fee: $1,100
With a large private outdoor deck and fireplace, this space is perfect for an intimate retreat. Located near the Lied Jungle® this venue has enough space to accommodate 60 guests for a sit-down dinner and up to 85 for a cocktail reception. Tables and chairs as well as Wi-Fi and some audio visual equipment are included in the rental fee.

Garden of the Senses

Rental Fee:

  • $2,000 for ceremony only
  • $2,500 for ceremony and reception

Colorful gardens, bronze animal sculptures and exotic birds make this a charming venue for an event. Rental includes a tram from 6 - 9 p.m. The Garden is only available May 1 – September 30 and has limited patio seating available. It is ideal for groups of approximately 200 or less. The Garden Classroom, a quaint indoor space featuring murals of the African Grasslands and restrooms, offers space for up to 50 guests to gather. This building is included with the rental of the Garden of the Senses.

Picnics

What better way to say "thank you" to your employees and clients than an all-inclusive day at Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium! Our picnic package is available April through October and includes the following for each person in your group:

  • Zoo admission
  • One IMAX® film admission
  • A catered picnic meal at one of the picnic pavilions
  • A ride on the train, tram, carousel and Skyfari (operate weather-permitting)

Contact the Events Department at (402) 738-2088 or events@OmahaZoo.com for your catering options.

Birthdays

Making a Reservation

  • A minimum of 3 weeks notice is required.
  • To book your party, please call (402) 738-2005.

What You Need To Know

  • Birthday child must be turning a minimum of 4 years old.
  • Birthday parties can be scheduled up to six months in advance.
  • A non-refundable $50 deposit is due when the party is booked.
  • The signed contract and remaining payment are due two weeks after making your reservation. The minimum base payment of $300 for members or $325 for non-members and contract are due no later than three weeks prior to the date of the party to keep your reservation.
  • The MAXIMUM number of people for a birthday party is 25 (children and adults).

Times

  • 10 - 11:30 a.m.
  • 1 - 2:30 p.m.
  • 3:30 - 5 p.m.


Birthday Package

Close Encounters! - Guests will be sure to enjoy an up-close encounter with one of the Zoo's very own residents. We provide all of your basic party needs plus an animal visit. Cost: $300 for members and $325 for non-members for 12 people ($16.50 for each additional child or adult)

Party Features

  • Invitations
  • 1 1/2 hour room rental
  • Dedicated party host
  • Fun craft and animal tattoos (washable)
  • Animal-themed activity
  • Animal visit
  • $10 in Doorly Dollars for the birthday child
  • Ice cream cup and juice box
  • Plus: Members of the private party receive full admission to Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium

Party Favor Bag Add Ons:

  • $10 each: String backpack with merchandise from Zoo's gift shop
  • $5 each: Favor bag with merchandise from Zoo's gift shop

Ticket Add Ons:

  • $2 each: Stingray Beach, Sue's Carousel
  • $3 each: One-Way Train Ride, One-Way Skyfari, Roundtrip Tram Ride
  • $5.50 each: Roundtrip Train Ride, Roundtrip Skyfari Ride
  • $12 each: Wagon Rental
  • $15 each: All-Day Rides Pass

Food Add Ons:

  • $25: 1/4 animal-theme sheet cake
  • $35: 1/2 animal-theme sheet cake
  • $100: 2 16-inch, single-topping pizzas plus additional 30 minutes in party room
  • $3.50 each: Individual-size box of popcorn

Drink Add Ons:

  • $2.25 each: Canned soda
  • $2.75 each: Bottled water

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I have a party for two children together?
We do allow combined parties for two children. Please note that all of the same rules and features apply.

What kind of animal will you bring or can I pick the animal?
The health and well being of the animals at our Zoo is extremely important. Therefore, the Animal Ambassadors that we use for these types of programs are on a schedule so that they do not become overused and stressed. Because of this, guests are not allowed to choose the animal and we can never guarantee that a specific animal will come to your party.

My child is not four or older. Can we still have a birthday party at the Zoo?
The Birthday Program is geared toward children ages 4 and up. Unfortunately, we can not accommodate parties for younger children. However, you may rent one of our facilities and purchase food and beverage items through our TreeTops Catering Department. You may bring in your own cake. Contact the Events Department for more details.

Can we rent the room for an extended length of time?
You can rent it for an extra 30 minutes if you are adding the pizza option to your party.

What is the Zoo's cancellation policy?
A written cancellation notice must be received by the Zoo at least three weeks prior to the date of the scheduled event. The remainder minus a $50.00 administration fee will be refunded. If notice is not received within this time, the entire fee will not be refunded. If you would like to reschedule, you must reschedule in one month to retain use of the rental fee.

What if it rains or snows the day of my party?
The Zoo rarely closes due to inclement weather. If the Zoo is open, the party will run as scheduled. There are no refunds or rescheduling due to inclement weather.  All activities are held indoors.

Some of my guests have Zoo memberships. Do I still have to pay extra for them if I go over the guest limit?
Birthday parties include Zoo admission and more. The fee covers the cost of the program. Parents and siblings of your guests (member or non-member) are more than welcome to enjoy the Zoo during the party free of charge; however, everyone that is present for the duration of the party is considered a guest.

When is my final balance and contract due?
A $50 non-refundable deposit is required upon booking. The signed contract and remaining payment are due two weeks after making your reservation. The minimum base payment of $300 for members and $325 for non-members and contract are due no later than three weeks prior to the date of the party to keep your reservation. If your party date is three weeks from the date of booking, full payment must be made to secure your reservation.

When will I receive the invitations? What if I need more?
Invitations will be mailed out once we receive the minimum base payment for the party. The base payment is due within two weeks after selecting your date.  We provide 12 invites; however, extras may be purchased for $1 each.

When is my guest count due?
If the total number of people at your party will exceed 15 (including the birthday child, any adults and children), please notify us no later than 1 week prior to your party.

What about the cake?
You are welcome to bring your own or we will order it for you. All of our cakes come from Olsen Bake Shop. They are a 1/4 sheet in size (1/2 sheet will be ordered for larger parties) and are available in vanilla, marble or chocolate. The cake is decorated with an animal of your choice, drawn with frosting and says, "Happy Birthday [child's name]".

What should I expect during the party?
You and your guests may get into the birthday facility 10 minutes prior to your party. A birthday host will begin by giving each of the children a washable animal tattoo and a craft to work on. Party guests will then get to meet one of the Zoo’s very own residents. A zookeeper will share exciting information about an animal from our collection then follow up with questions and answers. Next, guests will participate in an animal-themed activity followed by cake, ice cream and the opening of presents.

Can we store food or presents?
The Zoo does not provide any storage areas. We suggest bringing or renting a wagon to help you cart items between the Zoo and your vehicle.

Can I bring my own decorations?
Yes. However, we do not allow balloons, straws, confetti or pinatas for the safety of the animals. Also, we ask that any decorations be hung with removable tape only.

Can I bring food to the party?
No outside food may not be brought to the party. However, if you would like to have food add-ons provided during the party, you may place an order with the Events Department to be prepared by our TreeTops Catering Department. Please notify the Events Department. You are also welcome to take your guests to any of the concessions stands or the Tree Tops Restaurant to eat before or after the party.

If you have any other questions, please contact the Events Department at (402) 738-2005 or birthdays@OmahaZoo.com.

Cocktail Party Venues

There is a two-hour minimum for cocktail venues.

Butterfly and Insect Pavilion                  

Rental Fee: $1,000
Wander among thousands of majestic free flying butterflies in this total immersion exhibit.  The pavilion can accommodate up to 100 guests for a cocktail reception.

Omaha Steaks Grill & Patio                     

Rental Fee: $1,000
Located next to Durham TreeTops Restaurant and Lied Jungle®, this outdoor patio is perfect for cocktails before dinner. This space can accommodate 240 guests for a cocktail reception. Tables and chairs are included with this rental.

Desert Dome/Kingdoms of the Night®

Rental Fee: $1,500
An evening in the Desert Dome and Kingdoms of the Night combines three deserts under the world’s largest geodesic dome and the world’s largest nocturnal exhibit. Enjoy a sit-down dinner in the lobby for up to 50 guests or 300 for a cocktail reception. The Desert Dome animals will remain on display until 8 p.m. and the Kingdom’s of the Night lights will remain off until 9 p.m.

Hubbard Gorilla Valley

Rental Fee: $1,000
Imagine an evening where gorillas roam free and you are on display! There’s plenty of room for everyone, with space for 300 guests for a cocktail reception.

Infield at the Zoo

Rental Fee: $1,000
Enjoy cocktails where the best of college baseball was once played. Johnny Rosenblatt's Infield at the Zoo is a casual outdoor venue featuring a little league baseball-sized field, original Rosenblatt seats and the iconic Rosenblatt sign. Up to 300 guests can enjoy this space for your cocktail party.

Giraffe Herd Rooms

Rental Fee: $1,000
Get up close and personal with one of Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium’s giraffes. Inside, hay feeding nets, automated food dispensers and special enrichment items are installed along the enclosure's perimeter to allow for 24-hour stimulation and care. The Giraffe Herd Rooms can only be added on with another facility rental.

Add a wild twist to your event with an up-close and personal educational encounter with one of the Zoo’s Animal Ambassadors!