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Point Defiance Zoo, Northwest Trek now open

Both the Point Defiance Zoo and Northwest Trek Wildlife Park will have limited capacity, and visitors will use timed tickets purchased online.

TACOMA, Wash. — The Point Defiance Zoo and Northwest Trek Wildlife Park reopened to the public on Thursday after closing due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Under Phase 2 of Governor Jay Inslee's “Safe Start” reopening plan, both Point Defiance and Northwest Trek will have limited capacity, and visitors will use timed tickets purchased online.

Both parks are going to do things a little bit differently. The zoos will only offer outdoor experiences as indoor buildings will be closed to help reduce the spread of coronavirus.

If you visit, you should also expect one-directional pathways similar to grocery stores.

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Both parks have lost more than $3.4 million combined since March and they face significant financial challenges.

“We are following all the guidelines from the governor during this phase two reopening so the aquariums will be closed and other indoor spaces, but the majority of our animal exhibits will still be viewable,” a zoo representative explained.

The main Pearl Street entrance to the Point Defiance Zoo is closed, guests should use the gate located on Mildred Street to enter. Staff members will be wearing masks at the zoo. Guests are “strongly encouraged” to wear a face mask while visiting, but they are not required.

RELATED: What hikers need to know as Washington parks and trails reopen

At Northwest Trek, they're telling visitors to bring their own water bottles because drinking fountains will be closed. They've canceled some of the talks they normally hold to avoid people gathering together.

Guests will need to print out timed tickets or have them ready on their phones when they arrive.

Click here for more reopening information or to buy tickets for the Point Defiance Zoo.

Click here for more reopening information or to buy tickets for Northwest Trek Wildlife Park.