Tags Posts tagged with "Long Island Game Farm"

Long Island Game Farm

From left, Patricia Snyder and Melinda Novak. Photo courtesy of LI Game Farm

The Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, Inc. has announced their launch in partnership with the Long Island Game Farm to engage, educate, and encourage the public to foster an understanding and respect for wildlife, and inspire action to protect wildlife for a healthy ecosystem. 

Founded in February 2023, FWS gained nonprofit status this past October. Helmed by executive director Patricia Snyder, the organization is formally launching cultural, educational, and wellness programming this month, with much more planned for the year, ensuring the longevity of the Manorville game farm.

“The Long Island Game Farm has benefitted so many people and animals over its nearly 55-year history, it’s important to ensure its future,” said Snyder. 

“The mission of the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability is to connect people with wildlife and the natural environment through awareness activities and engaging experiences that support and complement the work of the game farm. We have programs scheduled for learners of all ages, summer camps, art classes, music classes, and more, as well as the return of the popular Senior Social Club. Volunteer and fundraising opportunities will also be a priority to advance our mission,” she said.

The foundation’s education team includes education coordinator Shannon Swanson, a learning specialist at Peconic Community School, educator James Carey, who has also worked at the game farm since 2021, and educator Jenna Culbertson, a music facilitator at Peconic Community School. Swanson will also serve as director of Camp Zoo, a summer program that introduces and immerses children ages 5 to10 in nature through outdoor exploration, games, crafts, and other educational hands-on activities.

To date, the foundation has coordinated a number of initiatives at the game farm, including the dedication of Woodland Hall in memory of late Sergeant Paul Ferrara, a memorial bench program, volunteer corps program, and an inaugural yearly fundraiser. The foundation also worked with the game farm to secure critical funding through Suffolk County’s JumpSMART Small Business Downtown Investment Program to renovate the game farm amphitheater and create a universal access woodland trail.

“2024 is going to be an exciting year,” said game farm president Melinda Novak. “Having a supporting non-profit is an important step in keeping the game farm sustainable. I’m so happy to see this long-held idea come to fruition.”

The foundation is also preparing to celebrate the Long Island Game Farm’s 55th anniversary in 2025. More information on how the community can get involved will become available in the coming weeks. Learn more at the foundation’s new website at wildlifesustainability.org.

Stanley the Fox. Photo from Long Island Game Farm
New education programs connect kids to nature
As schools are preparing for their first long break of the year, the Long Island Game Farm in Manorville is inviting families and visitors of all ages to spend time at the farm with the animals, like Nala the African serval cat, Stanley the fox, lemurs, goats, and more.
Nala the African serval cat. Photo from the Long Island Game Farm

The game farm is also offering special programming for infants to children age 12 during the break, beginning February 19. Kids can learn how animals prepare for winter, including adaptations, migration, and hibernation; sketch some of the resident animals; and engage in imaginative play using stuffed animals, music, and dance.

These programs will be presented by the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, the game farm’s nonprofit arm that aims to connect people with wildlife and the natural environment through awareness activities and engaging experiences.

“We’re thrilled to offer families educational and fun experiences during February break this year,” shares Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak. “The Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability’s programming at the game farm encourages children and adults alike to foster an appreciation for nature through engaging experiences. We also have a great education team to lead these programs, so we’re very excited for all to come this year.”

Animals in Winter – Monday, February 19 @ 9 a.m.

In this program for children ages 5 to 7, educator James Carey will discuss how animals prepare for winter using adaptations, migration and/or hibernation. The fee is $35 per child.

Animals in Winter – Monday, February 19 @ 1 p.m.

In this program for children ages 8 to 12, educator James Carey will discuss how animals prepare for winter using adaptations, migration and/or hibernation. The fee is $35 per child.

Sketch the Animals – Wednesday, February 21 @ 10:30 a.m.

Bring your sketch pad and drawing tools to the Long Island Game Farm’s Woodland Hall to see and sketch select resident animals up close. For ages 8 and up. The fee is $25 per person.

Make Music with Ms. Jenna – Friday, February 23 @ 10:30 a.m.

Spark imagination and create music using stuffed animals, song, and dance in this program for children up to age 5. The fee is $20 per child and adult. Each additional child is $10.

Registration is required and can be booked online at longislandgamefarm.com or by calling 631-878-6644.

For those that wish to spend more time at the game farm, attendees to these classes will receive half-off admission for the day of class. The teacher or staff will meet students at the ticket booth.

Long Island Game Farm, 489 Chapman Blvd., Manorville will be open on weekends in February and for winter break from Monday, February 19 through Sunday, February 25 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. All paying guests will receive a free cup of animal food in February. For more information, call 631-88-6644 or visit www.longislandgamefarm.com.

 

The Long Island Game Farm in Manorville was awarded a $568,000 grant from Suffolk County in December as part of the JumpSMART Small Business Downtown Investment Program, which provides funding to support downtown growth and to help local businesses and institutions to remain economically competitive. 

“I am sincerely grateful for the generous support from Suffolk County and JumpSMART program awarded to the Long Island Game Farm,” shares Melinda Novak, president of the game farm. “This grant will enable us to renovate our amphitheater and develop a universal access trail, which has been a long-time dream for us to be able to share with all members of our community. This expansion coincides with the efforts of our new nonprofit arm, the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, as it develops programs in the cultural, educational, and wellness categories. Knowing Suffolk County believes in us gives us great hope for our future aspirations as the Long Island Game Farm continues to grow.”

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, Legislator James Mazzarella, Legislator Nick Caracappa, and Legislator minority leader Jason Richberg visited the game farm on December 15 to present the check to Novak, Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability Tricia Snyder, game farm staff, and even two of the resident goats. Many of those in attendance agreed that the game farm is an iconic piece of Long Island’s history, dating back to 1970, and have fond memories of visiting in their childhood. For more information, visit longislandgamefarm.com or call 631-878-6644. 

Photo from Long Island Game Farm

The Long Island Game Farm, 489 Chapman Blvd., Manorville has announced a new slate of programming, hosted by their nonprofit arm, the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, Inc., to begin this fall for adults and families. The recently renovated Woodland Hall will host a number of events beginning in October, including iPhone photography classes and art sketch sessions. Preschoolers can enjoy zoo adventures on the game farm, learning about and meeting some of the resident animals.

“One of our primary goals with Woodland Hall is to offer meaningful programs to the community,” shares Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak. “We’ve had great success with our special social club for seniors in August and September, and we’re now excited to expand on programs to educate the public about wildlife in fun ways. The sketch sessions will be particularly exciting!”

Sketch Our Animals 

Sundays, October 11 & 19 at 2 p.m.

Participants will bring their sketch pads and drawing tools to Long Island Game Farm’s Woodland Hall to see and sketch select resident animals up close during an open session. This adult program is $20 per person, or $15 per person if registered and paid in advance. Park admission is separate and will be 50% off for the day. 

Photo from Long Island Game Farm

Phone Photography with Anthony Graziano 

Sunday, October 22 at 11 a.m.

This intensive four-hour adult workshop will take participants beyond basic iPhone snapshots and provide the skills to create art-quality photographs. Anthony Graziano will guide participants through camera setup, guidelines for taking pictures and fundamental photographic techniques, and basic editing tips. The class will begin indoors and then move outside to reinforce learnings with personalized instruction in an inspiring natural setting. The class is $125 per person and includes admission to Long Island Game Farm. Advance reservations are required.

Zoo Adventures for Little Ones 

Fridays Oct. 27 & Nov. 3 @ 10:30 a.m.

For preschoolers, the Long Island Game Farm will offer a special program introducing little ones to the zoo. A wildlife educator will offer a close-up look at some of the animals, followed by a story or art activity. The program is $25 for one caregiver and one child. Additional children are $20 each. If registered and paid in advance, the rate will be reduced by $5. Park admission is separate and will be 50% off for the day. 

The Long Island Game Farm is open Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday, Sunday, and holidays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. To make a reservation for any of the above events, visit longislandgamefarm.com or call 631-878-6644.

Bobo the Giraffe. Photo from Long Island Game Farm

Long Island Game Farm is sad to announce the sudden passing of their beloved giraffe, Bobo. Bobo passed away unexpectedly on the morning of October 2 from heart failure, according to the game farm’s veterinarian, Dr. Benjamin Haar. The three-year-old giraffe had been under routine care for parasites, which is common in giraffes. A necropsy examination is being coordinated, and results may take several months.

Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak shares, “We are so heartbroken. We loved Bobo beyond measure, and he was such a fixture at the park. We had been working hard to create a permanent home for him here. Bobo will be missed terribly.”

“Bobo was such an important member of our zoo family,” shares game farm director Greg Drossel. “His presence created so many lasting memories not only for the staff, but for all the visitors he touched with his gentle nature.“

This is all of the information currently available. More will be shared in the coming months when necropsy results are finalized.

Photo courtesy of LI Game Farm

The Long Island Game Farm in Manorville has announced that it will continue its new social club for seniors through September. Every Thursday morning through September 26, senior citizens (65 years+) can visit the animals, walk the grounds (get your steps in!), attend a presentation in the newly renovated Woodland Hall, and enjoy a beverage and snacks with fellow seniors. The special rate is $10 per person. Reservations are strongly encouraged and can be made by calling 631-878-6644.

Photo courtesy of LI Game Farm

“Inspiring a love of nature through educational programming is important to our mission,” shares Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak. “Being able to launch a special social club for seniors and utilize the newly renovated Woodland Hall for this purpose is pretty exciting for us. I’m also excited to give the first presentation about life on the game farm, including my family’s 50+ year history.”

Each week guests will begin a walk on the grounds at 10 a.m., visiting animals and learning more about the various species at the game farm. At 11 a.m., seniors will gather in Woodland Hall for talks that will vary weekly. Topics include rescued animals, birding, nature photography, and more.

Tickets are $10 per person and for seniors only. Please do not bring grandchildren. Pets are not allowed.

For more information about the game farm and upcoming programming, visit longislandgamefarm.com.

ABOUT LONG ISLAND GAME FARM

Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and Children’s Zoo was founded in 1970 by Stanley and Diane Novak. As the largest combined children’s zoo and wildlife park on Long Island, they offer families a natural environment where they can learn about wildlife and animals through education and entertainment. A member of American Association of Zookeepers and Zoological Association of America, the farm is located at 489 Chapman Boulevard, Manorville, New York.

 

Bobo the Giraffe is headed to South Carolina for the winter. Photo courtesy of LI Game Farm

The Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and Children’s Zoo, 489 Chapman Blvd., Manorville invites the community to Bobo’s Bon Voyage Party on Saturday, Sept. 16 at 4:30 p.m. 

This fundraising event is being presented by the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, Inc., the Game Farm’s new non-profit arm. Funds from the event will support the construction of a heated and air-conditioned giraffe house big enough to accommodate two giraffes, and offer year-round public programming to raise awareness of this incredible yet endangered species. 

“It has long been a dream of ours to host giraffes year-round at the Long Island Game Farm,” shares president Melinda Novak. “To further our goal of connecting people to wildlife, a year-round giraffe house will allow us space to keep two giraffes comfortably and present programming that will educate the public on these gentle giants.” 

“Bobo the Giraffe is one of our most popular residents in the summer months, and we hope his loyal fans will join us in sending him off for the season to warmer climates in South Carolina. Perhaps next year, he will be a permanent resident of the game farm!” added Novak.

The party will feature beer, wine, and hors d’oeuvres, music by the East End Trio, animal encounters with Bobo the Giraffe, Speedy the Tortoise, Snappy the Alligator, and Irwin & Susie the Wallabies, and auction of art created especially by game farm animals.

Formed in 2023, the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, Inc.’s mission is to connect people with wildlife and the natural environment, and to support the work of the Long Island Game Farm. The game farm is also a supporter of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation’s efforts to secure a future for all giraffe populations in the wild and will also donate a portion of ticket sales that week to the nonprofit organization.

Tickets begin at $150 per person. Sponsorship packages are also available. Details and tickets can be found at www.longislandgamefarm.com.

For the months of August and September, the Long Island Game Farm will offer a new social club for seniors. Every Tuesday morning from August 1 through September 26, senior citizens (65 years+) can visit the animals, walk the grounds (get your steps in!), attend a presentation in the newly renovated Woodland Hall, and enjoy a beverage and snacks with fellow seniors. 

Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and Children’s Zoo was founded in 1970 by Stanley and Diane Novak. As the largest combined children’s zoo and wildlife park on Long Island, they offer families a natural environment where they can learn about wildlife and animals through education and entertainment. A member of American Association of Zookeepers and Zoological Association of America, the farm is located at 489 Chapman Boulevard in Manorville.

“Inspiring a love of nature through educational programming is important to our mission,” shares Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak. “Being able to launch a special social club for seniors and utilize the newly renovated Woodland Hall for this purpose is pretty exciting for us. I’m also excited to give the first presentation about life on the game farm, including my family’s 50+ year history.”

Each week guests will begin a walk on the grounds at 10 a.m., visiting animals and learning more about the various species at the game farm. At 11 a.m., seniors will gather in Woodland Hall for talks that will vary weekly. Topics include rescued animals, birding, nature photography, and more.

Tickets are $10 per person and for seniors only. Please do not bring grandchildren. Pets are not allowed. Reservations are strongly encouraged and can be made by calling 631-878-6644. For more information about the game farm and upcoming programming, visit longislandgamefarm.com.

Come meet Bobo the Giraffe at the Long Island Game Farm. Portrait by Steve and Lori Biegler

In celebration of World Giraffe Day (June 21), the Long Island Game Farm in Manorville will launch a new kids’ activity pack to encourage education, engagement, and discovery. The first edition will be available the week of Monday, June 19 and centered around World Giraffe Day with a specially designed interactive scavenger hunt. As the game farm is a supporter of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation’s efforts to secure a future for all giraffe populations in the wild, the game farm will also donate a portion of ticket sales that week to the nonprofit organization. 

“Connecting people to wildlife is one of our top priorities of the game farm,” shares Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak. “These new kids’ activity packs are a way to deepen the connection children and families have with nature through fun yet educational activities. We’re excited to launch with a World Giraffe theme and an interactive scavenger hunt that we hope inspires a greater appreciation of these amazing creatures. At the game farm, we further our own commitment to wildlife by supporting the work of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation to save giraffes in Africa.”

BoBo the Giraffe is one of the game farm’s most beloved animals, and just returned this past May. Now, guests can participate in personal encounters to feed BoBo healthy snacks, take photos, and learn more about the species and conservation efforts around the world. Proceeds from this special encounter go towards building a heated giraffe house. 

National Family Month & Father’s Day

June is also National Family Month, and the activity packs available for purchase will be an ongoing option for kids to enjoy. Each pack includes an interactive scavenger hunt challenge and tool, game farm pencil, non-perishable snack, and an animal sticker. Staff will also be available throughout the month to take family portraits on guests’ phones and cameras. On Father’s Day, Sunday, June 18, dads will receive free admission.

Local Artisan Vendor Market – Saturday, June 24

Long Island Game Farm will launch its first-ever local artisan vendor market featuring planting propagation, wool felting, and floral painting demonstrations, local plant and product sales, and more. The market will be open on Saturday, June 24 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

As summer approaches, the game farm is planning a number of events including photo contests, “Zookeeper for a Day” contest for kids, and a weekly program for seniors.

Long Island Game Farm is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about the game farm and upcoming programming, visit longislandgamefarm.com. 

ABOUT LONG ISLAND GAME FARM 

Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and Children’s Zoo was founded in 1970 by Stanley and Diane Novak. As the largest combined children’s zoo and wildlife park on Long Island, they offer families a natural environment where they can learn about wildlife and animals through education and entertainment. A member of American Association of Zookeepers and Zoological Association of America, the farm is located at 489 Chapman Boulevard, Manorville, New York 11949. 

For more information, call 631-878-6644 or visit longislandgamefarm.com.

Chela Novak with Buddy. Photo courtesy of LI Game Farm

The Long Island Game Farm has announced the passing of their beloved blue-and-yellow macaw, Buddy. He was approximately 50 years old. The sad news was sent out in a press release on June 1.

Buddy came to the Manorville wildlife park and zoo in 1999, and had become one of first animals to greet visitors as they entered the park.

Chela Novak, whose family has owned and operated since 1970, was particularly close with Buddy and gave him a peanut ever day. She recalls he would say “Shut up, Gomez” when a rescued sulphur-crested cockatoo nearby got too loud. Buddy also loved dancing and would raise his wings for “Big Bird.” 

Education is a critical element of the Long Island Game Farm’s work, and Buddy, along with fellow parrots, provided a unique opportunity for visitors to learn more about this intriguing species. He will be missed by game farm staff and visitors alike.