Louisville Zoo hosts birthday celebrations for polar bear Qannik, elephant Punch

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - The Louisville Zoo is hosting a birthday bash over the weekend for two of the city’s most beloved animals.

On Saturday, guests are invited to the birthday celebrations for Asian elephant Punch, who is turning 53 this year, and polar bear Qannik, who is turning 12.

Guests will sing “Happy Birthday” to both animals as they receive special enrichment treats and items for their birthday.

Punch arrived at the Louisville Zoo on Nov. 28, 1973 when she was three years old, coming from Southwicks Zoo in Massachusetts.

Qannik made national headlines after she was found on Alaska’s North Slope in 2011 separated from her mother and sibling. U.S. Fish and Wildlife began a rescue operation, and was taken into the Louisville Zoo on June 28, 2011.

Punch’s celebration will take place in the Africa Zone at 1:30 p.m. and Qannik’s celebration will happen at 2:15 p.m. at Glacier Run.

Supporters of the Louisville Zoo can also purchase a new, limited-edition shirt with a modern bear design through Jan. 23 at the zoo’s website. Proceeds from the shirt will go to supporting the zoo’s more than 1,100 animals under its care.

For more information and to purchase tickets, click or tap here.

Dustin Vogt

Dustin Vogt

Dustin Vogt joined the digital team of WAVE News in September 2019.