Saturday, October 30, 2010

Noise at the Zoo: Neighbors Complain About Loud Party Friday Night

Last night's Night of the Living Zoo Halloween party prompted several neighbors to complain about the event's very loud noise. At around 10pm Friday the event's noise reached intolerable levels, according to some Woodley Park residents. Here is what some people reported on the Cleveland Park Listserv:
At the risk of seeming like a killjoy, the music from tonight's Halloween party at the zoo is making our house shake and our heads hurt.
I was really surprised when the person I spoke to said, "It's out of our hands. This is the Director's party" I was told there was absolutely nothing they could do, that I should speak to the Director's office or his Public Affairs office, both of which are obviously closed. I have lived on this street for about 10 years and have never had this kind of noise from the zoo. If anyone knows who I can write to on Monday - or call tomorrow - I will!
Agreeing with the neighbors, this is unbearable. It's never been like this before. I can't imagine that the animals like it either.
I can't believe that the Zoo leadership and vets condoned that level of noise. To me, it's animal torture and inexcusable. I just sent an email to the head of FONZ saying I thought the neighbors were owed an abject apology and a promise that it'll never happen again.


  1. I've lived adjacent to the Zoo for 5 years and something's definitely changed for the worse in its behavior toward and respect for its neighbors. Friday's event was only the latest in a series of inconsiderate actions. Most of us can't forget its middle-of-the-night road repavings a few months back (which could easily have been done during daytime hours). Not only are their actions rude, so are their lukewarm public affairs efforts. Hoping that those of us who call to lodge complaints Monday will post updates. I've been so disgusted with the Zoo's behavior, I've talked friends out of volunteering or donating there.

  2. I'm glad I've kept up with the comments on what's going on with the Zoo, since I have been considering volunteering. I feel bad for the animals, I KNOW they don't like loud noise.

    I am sorry to see this happen, but it is a reality of what is going on in the world, well, perhaps here in the USA. People are selfish, and don't care about others. I am 53, and have seen this behavior amplify each year over the past ten (10) years.

    Maybe we should re-evaluate what constitutes our morals and values in the good 'ol USA.

    But let's consider the animals that are forced to submit to this abuse (they don't like loud noises, it is a FACT). Please write the Board about the situation (since it was stated in an earlier post that it was the Director's party).

    John W. Marriott III, Chair
    Susan A. Mars, Vice-Chair
    c/o National Zoo
    3001 Connecticut Avenue, NW
    Washington, DC 20008

    It wouldn't hurt to write the Director to ask what was going on in his MIND with the loud noise party.

    The Directors' names are:

    Director, Smithsonian’s National Zoo
    Dennis W. Kelly
    Director, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
    Steven L. Monfort
    Executive Director, Friends of the National Zoo
    Robert J. Lamb
    Deputy Executive Director, Friend

    Thank you.

  3. I live directly across from the zoo and I had zero problems with the noise from the event last Friday night.

    Heaven forbid we try to raise money for our National Zoo with a event that brings in a wider audience.

  4. As a former resident of Cleveland Park - and the target of more than a few VERY nasty emails from listserv members - I'm inclined to just be annoyed with these complaints. The Zoo is an institution, & one we should be proud to have in our neighborhood. What's more, no event of this caliber has been held before. It's not like the Zoo is always holding crazyloud events! I'd like to tell some of the listserv members to suck it up.

  5. It's supposed to be a Zoo, not a party place. I'm sure that the Zoo can figure out ways to have fund raisers without disturbing the neighbors.

  6. What a crotchety bunch of kill joys. I live behind the zoo and was somewhat bothered by the noise, but appreciate any effort to raise money to support the Smithsonian. I agree, it's not like the zoo has transformed itself into a loud weekly nightclub. It's an annual event intended to raise money and open the zoo to the broader public. I like Darlene's speech on selfishness as it only exemplifies the selfishness she decries. I also really like the comment on the noisy roadwork. Do you people also complain when those loud fire engines go by???

    It only takes a couple of people to moan before the fun gets killed for everyone else. Just remember, you live in the center of a large city. If you don't like the noise, then move to the burbs.