WIN a John Ball Zoo Membership to see the Meerkats, Bricklive Exhibit, and all the new Upgrades

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This giveaway is closed. Congrats to the winner, Shannon!

You Can’t Miss John Ball Zoo in 2020

If there was a year when you needed a membership to John Ball Zoo, it’s 2020. For one, we are all ready to get outdoors after a looong spring of stay-at-home orders and school closures.

But even more importantly, JBZ is going to be incredible this summer.

They reopened June 5 to great fanfare as they introduced their fascinating Bricklive exhibit and major upgrades.

john ball zoo brick rhino

Their new entrance is more open and that super steep hill you had to climb when you first entered? It’s now a meandering slope. They’ve ramped up their food game and have given a new home to the meerkats.

And Bricklive creatures are everywhere. They’re only here until September 7, so plan your trip soon.

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The Animals are Eager to see you at the Zoo This Summer

The zoo is constantly adding new and exciting exhibits and completing numerous updates and improvements.

This year the meerkats and their habitat partner, the cape porcupine, are sporting new digs.

The wide viewing windows make for a fun experience with these curious animals. (Just remember that touching the windows means a handwashing is in order.)

john ball zoo meerkat exhibit

Don’t Miss the New Concessions Treats

With Mason Jar Sundaes, tasty hotdogs, and craft beer, JBZ is venturing into the food arena like never before. I think date night at JBZ has just taken on a whole new set of possibilities.

Members get 10% off of concessions. 

john ball zoo concessions
Chocolate Peanut Butter Explosion Mason Jar Sundae and the Ultimate Dog with chili, cheese, onions, and pickles from the Whistle Stop.

Reserve Your Entry Time at John Ball Zoo

Using the theme “Protect the Herd”, John Ball Zoo has implemented additional health and safety procedures. The most notable change is that all guests; including members, non-members, and MI Bridges cardholders must reserve a timed ticket online prior to arrival due to the zoo’s limited capacity.

John Ball Zoo is open most days from 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM and is located at 1300 W. Fulton, Grand Rapids, MI 49506.

We also noticed John Ball Zoo staff wearing face masks. While not required, it is recommended that guests join in wearing a face mask as well. Face masks will be available upon request or for purchase at the gift shop.

In areas where social distancing is limited or in high touch point areas, there are closures of some guest spaces. These may include indoor spaces, outdoor play areas, and experiences. Closures are likely to change over the summer as information and strategies evolve. (For example, the Gem Mining Company was operating on opening weekend.)

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Experience John Ball Zoo for FREE With a Membership

John Ball Zoo is giving one lucky reader a FREE basic family membership to John Ball Zoo.

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The membership includes free general admission for one or two named cardholders living at the same address and their dependent children or grandchildren 19 or younger.

The membership will also provide your family with these amazing benefits:

  • Free unlimited general admission to John Ball Zoo
  • Free or reduced admission to over 150 reciprocal zoos and aquariums
  • One year subscription to Zoo News Magazine
  • Invitations and free admission to exclusive members-only events
  • Discounts on special events, birthday parties, and education classes (early registration too)
  • 10% discount at the gift shops, concessions, as well as zip line, ropes course, Funicular, camel rides, budgie feed sticks (as available).


There are three ways to get entries in for a chance to WIN a membership to John Ball Zoo.

Comment on THIS article. Facebook comments do not count for entries.

1: For a first entry, leave a comment below telling us what exhibit at John Ball Zoo you most want to see.

2. Get a second entry by “liking” John Ball Zoo on Facebook. Leave a new, separate comment below telling us you did so.

3. Get a third entry by sharing this giveaway with friends. Leave a third and final comment below telling us how you shared.



This giveaway will close on June 21, 2020 at midnight and the winners will be notified via email. The winner will have 24 hours to respond by email accepting the prize. No purchase necessary to enter the contest. Leaving a comment on this blog post is not a requirement of entry. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. You are providing your information to and not to Facebook. The information you provide will only be used to enter the contest and notify winners. Entrants will release Facebook from all liability. Entrants must be at least 18 years of age and reside in Michigan. Only one entry per household or IP address. Entrants may also enter the contest by sending an email to win at grkids dot com containing their name, address, phone number and email address along with the words: John Ball Zoo Membership Giveaway in the subject line. Grand Rapids Kids’ liability is limited to the value of the prize.


John Ball Zoo logo

1300 W. Fulton St, Grand Rapids

Facebook | (616) 336-4300

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Join Us Four Nights a Week

We’ll keep you up-to-date with what’s up for families – in a fun way – 4 nights a week. No spam. Just real parents looping you in.

544 thoughts on “WIN a John Ball Zoo Membership to see the Meerkats, Bricklive Exhibit, and all the new Upgrades”

  1. I want to see all the exhibits. It’s been too long since I’ve been to the zoo.

  2. Would love to have a membership to the zoo. I love the meerkats and all the other animals. Zoos are our absolute favorite.

    Liked and shared on Facebook!

  3. I shared this link on my facebook page for people to see. I also shared it directly to a few friends facebook pages

  4. My son loves John Ball Zoo. He loves the monkeys and penguins. We would love to be able to go multiple time and winning this free membership would allow us to do that 🙂

    1. Rebekah Myslenski

      We love the red pandas! Especially excited that there will be babies at some point!

  5. My boys are dying to see the meerkat exhibit. We have watched it being built over the last year and they are so excited to see what lies behind the fence.

    1. Stephanie Hanson

      My grandson, Koby, and I have made the zoo a regular “date spot” every summer for all his 12 years – we could sit and watch the tigers all day.

  6. Every time we visit the Chimpanzees are the most enjoyable. I’m so excited to see all the new upgrades.

    1. I shared this giveaway by copying the link to this article and posting bbn it on my Facebook page.

  7. My kids love the zoo, especially Harry Potter weekend and my son especially likes the snakes

  8. I love the tigers, stepdaughter loves the adorable red pandas! Whole family can’t wait to be back at the zoo this summer 🙂

  9. I’ve never been to JBZ, so I’m looking forward to experiencing everything with my son for the first time!

  10. We love watching the monkeys! Might need to grab the new mason jar Sundae too!

  11. Christine Donazzolo

    We would like to see the new entry and the meerkat exhibit and the tiger exhibit.

    1. My family and I are excited to see everythinga john ball. We love seeing it grow.

  12. We’d love to see the tigers. It’s been such a long time since we’ve been to the zoo that they didn’t have the tiger exhibit open yet the last time we were there!

  13. I liked on Facebook, and I most look forward to the meerkat exhibit and the reptile house! I also have a baby due soon, so it will be nice to bring him to see all the animals this year!

  14. Melanie Johnson

    Love seeing the otters, bears, red pandas, and the tigers! Can’t wait to see the lego animals and the meerkats!

  15. We just moved to GR and have never been to JPZ! I have a new granddaughter and we can’t wait to visit and watch the chimpanzees!

  16. Kimberly J Meyer

    I can’t wait to bring our 5-year-old to see the whole zoo. He has never been before! I am looking forward to seeing the Meerkats!

  17. Abby ziegler erhorn

    Sent the link for this giveaway via text and Facebook to multiple friends!