BINGHAMTON, NY – (WIVT/WBGH) The Ross Park Zoo’s Lantern Festival is back with all new displays.

The Illumination for Conservation event began two weeks ago and runs through the end of October. There are more than 40 illuminated displays spread throughout the zoo divided into four sections: African animals, dinosaurs, Chinese culture and an interactive area with parrots that mimic you.

Executive Director Phil Ginter says the lanterns, produced by Tianyu Arts and Culture, must be witnessed after dark to appreciate the full effect. But, Ginter says that doesn’t stop people from enjoying them during the day as well.

“They may not even be aware of what’s going on. They come in and all of a sudden there are these giant gorillas and dragons and poison dart frogs. An incredible spectacle that words can’t describe. And people leave just amazed at that transformation that takes place inside the park,” said Ginter.

This year some of the proceeds will support efforts to preserve gorilla habitats in Africa.

The zoo has several themed nights planned supporting veterans, seniors and needy families.
Illumination for Conservation runs Wednesday through Sunday from 7 to 11 p.m. with last admission at 10.

Tickets are $20 for visitors 13 and up, $15 for kids ages 3 to 12, and free for 2 and under.

More information can be found at