People of all ages love the animals of the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium, but what you might not know is how much fun it can be without kids! Grab a beer or a glass of wine and explore all the fun there is to be had at one of Central Ohio’s favorite attractions. Here are our favorite ways to spend an adult’s day out at the Columbus Zoo. Read to the bottom to find out how you can win four tickets to explore the zoo with friends!

Painting with the Penguins (Ages 21 & up)

Perfect for: Girls night


Members: $80

Non-members: $90

This is exactly as adorable as it sounds! You will prepare a canvas using the colors of your choice so that the penguins of the zoo can leave their footprints on it. While your canvas dries, you will be taken on a behind the scenes tour of discovery reef, which is home to all kinds of aquatic life. Once your tour is over, the moment you have all been waiting for! The penguins flap, waddle, and stomp across the canvas you created, making a one-of-a-kind piece of art and a cute memory to go with it! No painting experience is required and wine is provided. Find more information here.

After Hours Tours

Perfect for: Date night


Members: $55 per person

Non-members: $65 per person

Take an after hours tour of the Columbus Zoo from the comfort of a VIP-cart! While these tours are great for families, it is also a great unique date night. Connect with the wildlife and learn more about the Zoo's conservation efforts. You will enjoy refreshments along the way and receive a keepsake to remember your experience. Find more information here.

Croctail Creek at Zoombeezi Bay (Summer Only)

Croctail Creek Lazy River at Zoombeezi Bay

Perfect for: Day out with friends


General admission: Starts at $21.99

This adults-only area is perfect for a relaxing day out with friends. Visit Croctail Island to get a draft beer or fresh cocktail and then take a ride down the lazy river! Bring your drink with you and float down 850 feet of calming twists and turns. Learn more about Zoombeezi Bay here.

JazZoo Summer Concert Series

Jazzoo photo with sponsors

Perfect for: Relaxing evening with friends


Members: $30/$35 day of

Non-members: $35/$40 day of

The Columbus Zoo teams up with the Jazz Arts Group to bring a cool jazz concert series to the beautiful Water's Edge Events Park. Check out the line-up on the Zoo's events calendar.


Annual Events

Craft Brew at the Zoo

Craft Brew at the Zoo logo

Every year in August, the Columbus Zoo hosts an evening of beer, food and live entertainment!

Wine for Wildlife

Wine for wildlife auction

Every fall, enjoy wine tasting and dinner at Water's Edge Event Park. The event features silent and live auctions featuring travel, exclusive experiences, are and collectibles, home décor and fine wine.


Musicians performing at Zoofari

Every June, join the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium for their premier adults-only fundraising event featuring live entertainment, samplings of cuisine, and libations. It's one wild night!


Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo

Visit during the holiday to see the Columbus Zoo covered in lights! Some areas offer alcoholic beverages with holiday-themed flavors.


For a full events calendar, click here.


Want to check out some of these activities yourself? Subscribe to our mailing list below for a chance to win! You'll get entered to win four free tickets to the Columbus Zoo and receive a monthly newsletter with the latest happenings in Dublin, Ohio.

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