Bearizona announces the grand opening of Canyonlands Restaurant

WILLIAMS – Bearizona has opened its much anticipated 6,000-square-foot restaurant, Canyonlands. This themed restaurant features soaring canyon walls and ancient ruins that allow diners to immerse themselves in the true spirit of the Southwest. The expansive two-story covered deck includes priceless views of the park’s spectacular jaguar exhibit, which features a 25 foot waterfall.

Canyonlands Restaurant will open its doors at 10:30 a.m. and will close 2 hours after the park’s posted closing time. This restaurant is only accessible to park guests and annual pass holders.
Bearizona is a wildlife park which invites guests to experience a scenic three-mile drive in their own vehicle, witnessing North American animals in their natural environment. In Fort Bearizona, visitors can leisurely stroll along winding walkways through the forest for an up-close view of even more animal antics. Finally, guests are encouraged to catch the complimentary Birds of Prey free flight show, where they will come face to face with hawks, owls and other raptors.

Bearizona jaguar gives blood to jaguar at Reid Park Zoo

Click on image to view video of Bagheera swimming.

WILLIAMS — This time of year is all about giving, and what better Christmas gift than to help a friend in need. Bearizona Wildlife Park’s resident jaguar Bagheera was able to give a blood transfusion to a Jaguar in dire need from the Reid Park Zoo.

Jaguars are a near threatened species and numbers are rapidly declining in their wild habitats which include the southern regions of the United States, Mexico and Central and South America. The last known wild Jaguars living in the United States were actually last seen in the Tucson Arizona, with the most recent sighting just last week.

Bearizona’s Owner stated “we received a call last week from Reid Park Zoo stating they had a Jaguar who was in need of help. We of course wanted to help, and after some discussions with our veterinary team we decided it was a great opportunity to help out a jaguar in need.

Bearizona’s male jaguar Bagheera is one of the most beloved critters to call Bearizona home and now he can add life saver to his list. They say a cat has nine lives and it looks like that very well may be the case for Reid Park Zoo’s jaguar Nakita, after the successful blood transfusion.

Casey also stated that “We are happy we were able to help and wish Nikita a speedy recovery.”

Bagheera can be seen frolicking in his home at Bearizona, an 11,000 square foot exhibit complete with a 30 foot waterfall.

Bearizona Winter Wonderland begins tonight


Bearizona photo

WILLIAMS — Bearizona is hosting their second annual Wild Wonderland event which starts this weekend. Patrons to Wild Wonderland are sure to get in Christmas spirit while enjoying the magic of Bearizona at night.

This family friendly event allows visitors to enter the park after normal operating hours and takes place in the Fort Bearizona walk through portion of the park only.

Snow makes the animals more active and light show more spectacular. - Bearizona photo

Snow makes the animals more active and light show more spectacular. – Bearizona photo

Guests will enjoy the lights and sounds of the season while strolling through the beautifully lit pine trees that are synchronized to traditional Christmas music. This merry light show occurs every half hour. Other festivities include a nightly visit from Mrs. Claus for a special Storytime, plenty of photo ops, and a couple of the park’s sturdier critters stay up late to enjoy the cooler nights and will even get the chance to open their Christmas presents early! Bearizona’s program animals are eager to participate in the season’s festivities as well, and will be out for all to meet.

Guests can stay warm by the outdoor fire pit while roasting s’mores, or purchase a Christmas goodie or seasonal beverage while they peruse the gift shop filled with plenty of gifts ideas to finish off your Christmas shopping.

Wild Wonderland is held every Friday Saturday and Sunday evening in December. Then beginning December. 19 it runs every night through the 31, but is closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas.

More information can be found at and make sure to get your 50% discount tickets on Groupon.

Bearizona may be the missing link to the Chicago Cubs success during the regular season.

bearizona-cubs02WILLIAMS — Baseball has always been a sport filled with superstitions. One of the most longstanding and widely believed superstitions has to do with the Chicago Cubs and The Curse of the Billy Goat. Some believe this so called curse is the reason the Cubs have not won a World Series since 1908, and haven’t qualified for a series since 1945.

Bearizona may be the missing link as to why the Cubs had such a successful season. Bearizona worked with Cubs manager Joe Maddon to surprise Cubs players in the pre-season with a visit from two bear cubs that were born at Bearizona Wildlife Park in Williams, Ariz. this past January. These two cubs, named Cubby and Rizzo, in honor of their famous pro-athlete buddies, could very well be the reason the cubs have made it this far in the playoffs.
Bearizona’s owner Sean Casey stated “The Chicago Cubs clearly have the talent to make it happen, but the Bearizona luck that cubs Cubby and Rizzo bring can’t hurt their chances either.”

Bearizona assists AGFD in rescuing a troublesome bear

800-bear-lemmonWILLIAMS — Wildlife Park officials at Bearizona report that they have worked with Arizona Game & Fish to facilitate a rescue of a young female bear that was seen multiple times around the Mt. Lemmon area. The bear reportedly followed hikers, tried to get into homes and had no fear of humans. In cases like this, usually the bear would be euthanized.

Often time’s bears will venture into campsites or urban areas for food that is more easily accessible. That’s where the saying a fed bear is a dead bear comes from. It’s important for people to clean up after themselves while camping and not make it easy for bears to get a quick meal. If a bear finds easily obtainable food and/or food trash, the animal will continue to return until the food source is gone.

Black bears usually avoid people, but are attracted to human food and trash. The AGFD reminds campers to be “bear aware” by doing the following:

  1. Keeping a clean camp or picnic site.
  2. Stowing food, pet food, trash and picnic coolers out of sight and out of smell range of bears.
  3. Utilizing bear-proof food and trash receptacles where provided.
  4. Washing and stowing cooking utensils immediately following use.
  5. Not taking odorous items (toothpaste, lotions, etc.) or clothing used while cooking into tents.
  6. Keeping pets leashed.
  7. Avoiding contact with bears.

If bears are seen in the distance, it is advisable for visitors to change their route to avoid contact. If approached by a bear, discourage contact by looking large and imposing, waving arms or jacket, making loud noises and giving the bear an opportunity to leave the area.

Sean Casey, Bearizona’s owner stated “This past year we enacted a birth control plan for all of our bears. Cubby and Rizzo, our current cubs, will very likely be the last bear cubs born at the Park. We do this so we are able to rescue bears out of the wild when possible. Unfortunately we won’t be able to rescue every bear in need, but we are moving in a direction to rescue when the situation works for all parties involved.”

“We are fortunate to have found a new home for her,” said AZGFD Region 5 Supervisor Raul Vega. “That rarely is possible with common species like black bears. So this story has a happy ending, but it could have gone another way. Young bears that seem dangerous grow up to be large bears that are aggressive.”

Out of all of the bears that call Bearizona home, over 60% were rescued. Bearizona’s newest addition named “Lemmon” after Mt. Lemmon in Tucson where she lived, will stay in mandatory quarantine for 30 days before being released into the cub exhibit with Cubby and Rizzo.

Bearizona remains open

ZBearizona160113-01WILLIAMS — For over five-years Bearizona has entertained thousands of kids and adults. We visited the very first year when they allowed residents in free for a period of time. It was impressive, but not spectacular.
Over the years we have watched Bearizona grow. They have built an expansive gift shop with a fantastic diorama and separate room for close up introduction to animals and other activities. For Christmas, this year, they introduced the Wild Wonderland. This amazing light and music display I found as impressive as the Zoolights at the Phoenix Zoo. We got to see both.
This year—despite the most snow Williams has seen in some time—Bearizona even managed to stay open to the public. The snow even makes the animal displays more impressive just like the snow did for the Wild Wonderland display.

During the summer the animals tend to sleep during the heat of the day. With the cold weather, they are more active throughout the day. Especially the wolves and the bears. The same for the animals in the walk-through area. The otters are out and the bear cubs are playing in the snow.
If you plan to come to Williams, you should plan to visit Bearizona and the Grand Canyon Deer Farm petting zoo. For about the same price as the entrance to the Grand Canyon, you can get up close and personal with various animals of north America. If you are on a planned tour to Williams, you should urge the driver to visit these Williams attractions.

80% chance for up to 2″ of snow today

sno-16-01-12-043WILLIAMS — In the early morning hours only a sliver of blue sky remained as a backdrop to the Three Sisters. That was soon covered by an overcast sky.

According to the latest check, there is an 80% chance of snow today. It could drop as much as 2″ of new snow. Winds could rise to 17-mph this afternoon with gusts as high as 28-mph today and 30-mph tonight.

Saturday is predicted to be cold with wind chill down to zero. The sun and temperatures around the mid-40s are expected for Sunday through Martin Luther King day making the free entry day at the Grand Canyon a definite possibility.

The chance of rain and snow returns again on Tuesday.

While they may close temporarily depending on the weather, Bearizona and the Deer Farm east of Williams generally remain open for visitors to get up close and personal with the wild residents of Arizona.

Remember that, because of the expected low temperatures, ice is possible on the roadways and walkways.Winter-Bearizona16-01-13-010

Bearizona lights up Wild Wonderland

From Bearizona video

From Bearizona video

WILLIAMS — Bearizona is excited to announce that this winter, the park will be open on select nights for their own version of zoo lights called Wild Wonderland.

Enjoy the magic of Bearizona at night when 100,000 lights dance in tune to traditional Christmas music. The light show runs every half hour and gets better and better the darker it gets! Mrs. Claus visits from the North Pole for a special story time twice a night. Bearizona’s program animal room is open nightly where folks can get up-close and learn more about our adorable program critters. There are plenty of photo opportunities for families to take pictures, and coffee, cocoa and Christmas goodies are available for purchase in the new 12,000 square gift shop.

The event will run Friday/Saturday/Sunday Evenings (November 29 – December 13), then every evening (December 14- December 27). Wild Wonderland is closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas.

The event hours are 5:00p.m. – 8:00p.m. in Fort Bearizona walk through area. The drive through portion of the park is closed during wild wonderland. Admission to this event is a separate charge from regular park admission and is $10 for anyone 4 years of age and older.

Schedule of Events:
3:30 p.m. drive through closes
5:00 p.m.- 7:00 p.m. Program Animal Open House (Located in the back of the gift shop)
6:00 p.m. & 7:00 p.m. Mrs. Claus story time in the gift shop
5:00 p.m.- 8:00 p.m. Synchronized light show (every half hour)

Williams Alpine Harvest Festival in full swing

Folks enjoy a scare at Scarizona.

Folks enjoy a scare at Scarizona.

Williams Wear always has the scariest scarecrow. GMO Scarecorn.

Williams Wear always has the scariest scarecrow. GMO Scarecorn.

WILLIAMS — The Grand Canyon Railway Pumpkin Patch Train is running every weekend Friday through Sunday. At Bearizona they have a scary haunted house and decorations for their Howly Growly Owly festival.

After enjoying the aforementioned events, you can enter for a chance to win a Scarecrow Contest Prize Basket to be drawn for on November 1.

The scarecrows are fun, but not all of the businesses decorated, this year, are on the list. Some are just decorated with great fall decorations. The Open Road Cowboy on Route 66 made me go into video mode.

Pick up a form at one of the listed businesses or the Williams Visitor Center. Get signatures from at least 10 of the 15 businesses for signatures.

Take the completed form to the Williams Visitor Center on Railroad Avenue across the street from Circle K to enter the contest.

Decorations at Allstate Insurance not complete, yet. Check them out in a couple of days.

Decorations at Allstate Insurance not complete, yet. Check them out in a couple of days.

This scarecrow at the Williams Library a bigger problem than too little time. How about too little eyes?

This scarecrow at the Williams Library a bigger problem than too little time. How about too little eyes?

Our competition even decorated. We were going to post a scarecrow of our editor at deadline. But that would be too much competition for the amateurs.

Our competition even decorated. We were going to post a scarecrow of our editor at deadline. But that would be too much competition for the amateurs.

Hoot & Howl Your Way through Bearizona during the Howly Growly Owly Festival

Howly-7280WILLIAMS — Bearizona is hosting Howly Growly Owly Festival weekends in October. Visitors are encouraged to dress up in costume and kids that do will get a “beary” special treat!

Festivities Include:

Howl-O-Ween Express: Hop on the windowless bus that takes visitors through the drive-through animal exhibits. This is about as close as you are going to get to our animals, so you don’t want to miss out. Patrons can howl with the wolves in the Alaskan Tundra & Arctic Wolf enclosure and watch the bison interact with a special Howl-O-Ween enrichment treat. Bus rides depart from the Fort Bearizona parking lot at 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. & 4:00 p.m. every Friday and 10:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. & 4:00 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday in October.

Growly Bear Cave: Check out our array of jack-o-lanterns that adorn the inside of the Kindergarten Bear Cave.

Scarizona at Bearizona Haunted House: Those who dare can walk through our super scary Haunted House (PG-13 Rated) open Friday 12:00p.m.-5:00p.m. Saturday ave Sunday 10:00a.m-5:00p.m.

Raptor Show: Guests should plan to catch an Owly Raptor Show at 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m. or 3:00 p.m., after visiting Fort Bearizona’s baby and smaller animals.

Photo Ops: Several areas of the park are decorated in different themes so visitors can take photos with their families.

Scavenger Hunts: Both adults and children can get in on this fun activity. Check in at the front of Fort Bearizona Walk Through with the attendant and get your scavenger hunt form. After you complete the scavenger hunt make sure to turn in your card at the gift shop for a prize.

Bearizona’s mission is to promote conservation through memorable and educational encounters with North American wildlife in a natural environment.