WASHINGTON, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- The Smithsonian's National Zoo reopened Friday following the end of the government shutdown with celebratory deals including discounts on food and merchandise.
The zoo in Washington, which used Thursday to restock concessions and other services that had lapsed during the shutdown, welcomed the public back into the facility at 10 a.m. EDT with a weekend promotion offering a 10 percent discount on food and merchandise, The Washington Post reported Friday.
Zoo director Dennis Kelly said visitors under the age of 18 are also being allowed to ride the solar-powered Conservation Carousel for free during the weekend.
"We are so excited to be back here," zoo director Dennis Kelly said. "It's been a hard 17 days. The animals have missed the people. The staff has missed the folks."