Exciting news: on Thursday, December 12th, BrewLights is back! Hosted by the Friends of the National Zoo, BrewLights is an annual event that coincides with the Zoo Lights holiday exhibit that takes place from November 29th to January 1st. During every evening in December, the National Zoo has special extended hours featuring an array of holiday light displays, and visitors are able to walk around at night and enjoy the festive mood. However, BrewLights is an extra special evening.

During the event visitors can sample beer and cider from over 40 craft producers, including almost all your local favorites in the District and surrounding suburbs. The brewers have generously donated their kegs to the event and the booths will be staffed by folks from the breweries themselves. This is a great opportunity to enjoy the wonderful light exhibits and interact with your favorite brewers. In addition, for this one night only, the animal exhibits will be open to attendees in the evening. While the Zoo is normally not open at night, or otherwise restricts visitors from disturbing the animals at night time for conservation purposes, BrewLights is the exception to that rule. You can see nocturnally active animals like no other time of the year!

BrewLights is organized by the Friends of the National Zoo (FONZ), a non-profit organization that helps the Zoo educate visitors, run the merchandise operation, and organize special events. BrewLights serves as one of the main fundraisers for the FONZ, and as Rebecca Landau, marketing coordinator, explains, “by attending people are supporting the conservation mission of the Zoo.” The event will run from 6-9PM and tickets are currently available online: $55 for FONZ members and $65 for non-members. Additionally, any remaining tickets will be available for sale at the gate for a $5 surcharge. Use the code “MDBrewBL19” for $5 off admission.

If you would like to further support the work of the National Zoo, Landau suggests that “readers can share the success stories of the Zoo and become a member of the FONZ.” Incidentally, those memberships can be purchased as a great gift for your loved ones. Hope to see everyone there.



This post was written by Greg Parnas