Valley Metro Rail can take you to more than 55 cultural destinations in Phoenix, Tempe and Mesa. However, this destination comes with an exhibit of cuddly creatures: the Phoenix Zoo.
A safari not so far away
Getting to the Zoo is easy with Valley Metro. I took light rail to the Priest Dr/Washington station and then hopped on a Valley Metro bus (Route 3 or 56) for a ride that took about six minutes. The bus dropped me off at Papago Ponds, a scenic view that’s a short walk from the zoo.
Culture among creatures
The Phoenix Zoo provides art and history that covers more than just the animals. Sculptures can be found across the zoo, from statues of the critters themselves to cowboys. Hidden in the Arizona Trail is a recreation of the original Phoenix Bakery that once sat in downtown Phoenix. The exhibit contains a history of the business and an original Ford Model T that was part of the bakery’s fleet. Governor Hunt’s Tomb can be seen near the Desert Lives section of the park and the zoo provides a history of Arizona’s first state governor.
The best place to find art in the zoo is also the best place to go when you’re hungry. Plastered along the walls of the Savana Grill are original paintings from three local artists. Lucy Dickens uses oil paintings to show scenes from the savanna. Anne Peyton’s acrylic paintings showcase birds that can be found here in Arizona. Joye DeGoede’s oil paintings are animal portraits with personality, including giraffes eating ice cream. A preview of their art can be found here. These paintings will only be displayed through May 31st, but the zoo’s art gallery is open all year round.
The Phoenix Zoo is just one of many arts and culture destinations Valley Metro can connect you to. as your Artsline. For more information visit valleymetro.org/artsline