San Diego Zoo centennial celebrated at RITZ gala

The 2016 RITZ (Rendevous In The Zoo) gala, “It Began with a Roar,” marked the 100th anniversary of the San Diego Zoo. The black-tie affair, held June 18 on the grounds of the Zoo, featured lavish hors d’oeuvres, hosted cocktails, a three-course gourmet dinner, live and silent auctions, and then dancing to music from Wayne Foster Entertainment. Animal Ambassador Joan Embery welcomed guests and dignitaries, while a few furry creatures strolled the pathways, guided by animal handlers.

Since it began in 1984, RITZ has raised more than $17 million for San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research. Beneficiaries at the Zoo include Australian Outback, Sun Bear Forest, Gorilla Tropics, Elephant Odyssey, Ituri Forest, and Pygmy Chimps at Bonobo Road. Online:

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