(WJBF) – If you are looking for a family friendly adventure to go on close to home, how about the chance to see hundreds of exotic animals? And you can do it all from the inside of your car.
Eudora Farms at 219 Salem Lane in Salley, South Carolina is getting ready to open a drive-thru wildlife safari that will feature 50 species of animals from all over the world including camels, zebras, llamas, lemurs, exotic birds, African Watusi and a giraffe, among others. You can find a complete list here.
They plan to open Friday, May 8. Eudora Farms owner Mark Nisbet says right now they will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday, and by appointment Monday through Thursday.
“They’ll have the opportunity to feed the animals through their car,” said Nisbet. “We’ll have little buckets that they’ll have, and they’ll be able to feed them and they’ll come right up to your windows,” he added.
Nisbet says they will charge $20 per car for now while the park is still in the early stages of construction. Families can book an appointment for a more interactive experience at $10 per person. This will include a tour guide and the chance to feed a giraffe, lemurs and other animals.
“So this gives people, and my kids, a chance to appreciate those kinds of animals and to see them up close, and to smell them and touch them,” said Nisbet.
There will be a picnic area available for use with proper social distancing. They will also have a vehicle available if you do not want to use your own car to drive through the park.
Eudora Farms usually showcases their animals at educational events and fairs from Florida to Vermont. They are also featured in living nativity scenes and rented for special events. But with the pandemic shutdown none of those events are currently taking place.
Nisbet says they originally planned to open a drive-thru safari in 2021, but the pandemic has forced him to act now. He and his staff are working around the clock to get fences in place, trails carved out and new exhibits up for display.
“I started thinking well, you know maybe we can try to ease it open a little bit and give people an opportunity to come out and experience it,” says Nisbet. “The exciting thing for them is, when they come, they’re only going to see just the beginning stage,” he added.
Eventually, Nisbet plans to have a full track more than two miles long weaving throughout the 125+ acre property. They will also have a interactive walk-through trail with five or six exhibits, including the current lemur exhibit. Long-term plans include a gift shop, patio and staging area for educational events.
Nisbet hopes the drive-thru safari can inspire and educate others on the importance of conservation efforts for animals around the world.
“In the world scheme of things, when we wake up, some of these animals are not going to be here. So this is a chance for people to see them and enjoy them. And hopefully maybe they can go back and do something about that to help with their habitat and conservation,” said Nisbet.
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