When is the 2019 ‘ZooRunRun’ at Brookfield Zoo?” by S.M. O’Connor

The 5K and one-mile Kids’ Dash Brookfield ZooRunRun will takes place on Sunday, September 8, 2019 from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.[1]  Presented by Aquafina, Gatorade, and the DuPage Medical Group, the event is a fundraiser for the Chicago Zoological Society Animal Care and Conservation Fund.

Runners (and walkers) regardless of age are welcome to participate in the 5K race, which is presented by Aquafina and Gatorade and sponsored by the DuPage Medical Group.  Friends and family of racers will get free parking and free admission to the Brookfield Zoo (by entering through the North Gate Entrance prior to the race) to cheer them on and after the race can stay to enjoy the zoo.

The 5K chip-timed race will begin promptly at 8:30 a.m.  DuPage Medical Group physical therapists will be on-site the day of the race to offer post-race stretching and recovery tips.  Registration of the 5K is $35.  The price will increase to $45 on Friday, September 6, 2019.  There is also a $3.50 sign-up fee and includes a moisture-wicking t-shirt that features the 2019 ZooRunRun logo and a timed-bib.

Youngsters in the age range of four-to-thirteen-years-old, are invited to participate in the one-mile Kid’s Dash, which will start at 9:30 a.m.  The fee for the one-mile-long Kids’ Dash is $20 plus a $3 sign-up fee.  The children also receive a t-shirt that features the 2019 ZooRunRun logo and a timed-bib.

To register, go to CZS.org/ZooRunRun. Both races will begin in the Discovery Center parking lot and will take participants through the zoo grounds and past a number of animal habitats on a wildlife-inspired course.  Awards will be presented at 10:00 a.m. to the first-place, second-place, and third-place man and female runners in the 5K, as well as the top three participants in the Kids’ Dash.

Early packet pickup will be available in Brookfield Zoo’s North Gate parking lot at 1st Avenue and 31st Street on Friday, September 6, 2019, between 12:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.; on Saturday, September 7, 2019, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; and on Sunday, September 8, 2018 from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. prior to the start of the race.[2]  On race day, participants must enter the Brookfield Zoo via the North Gate any time after 6:30 a.m. and proceed to the Discovery Center parking lot to line up for the start of the race.  Please note that participants will not be able to access the Discovery Center parking lot by vehicle.

The ZooRunRun will take place rain or shine.  All registrations are final.  No refunds will be made.  There is a dedicated Facebook Webpage for the 2019 ZooRunRun.

bdf83d46-4748-41bb-adfa-eaca569d00eeFigure 1 Credit: Chicago Zoological Society Caption: Runners begin the ZooRunRun course inside Brookfield Zoo.

fbadf166-3fc7-472c-a868-483b731e5eb3Figure 2 Credit: Chicago Zoological Society Caption: Runners make their way past a bison habitat on the ZooRunRun course on September 9, 2018.

60383e2d-d9eb-450a-9f9f-bffbbef57b05Figure 3 Credit: Chicago Zoological Society Caption: This picture was taken on September 9, 2018. Strollers are allowed in the 5K (but not the Kids’ Dash).  Runners (or walkers) with strollers will line up in a specially designated coral.

0fa696d0-dec7-4384-be53-aea2932d99f9Figure 4 Credit: Chicago Zoological Society Caption: Runners make their way through the Great Bear Wilderness exhibit on the ZooRunRun course on September 9, 2018.


The Chicago Zoological Society is a private, non-profit organization that operates the Brookfield Zoo on property that belongs to the Forest Preserve District of Cook County.  Its animal hospital, the Center for the Science if Animal Care and Welfare, “strives to discover and implement innovative approaches to zoo animal management.”  The Brookfield Zoo met the American Humane Association’s rigorous standards for the care and welfare of animals to become the world’s first zoo to receive Humane Certified™ certification.

The Brookfield Zoo is open every day of the year.  It is located between the Stevenson Expressway (I-55) and Eisenhower Expressway (I-290) and is also accessible via the TriState Tollway (I-294).  The North Gate Main Entrance address is 8400 West 31st Street, Brookfield, Illinois 60513.  The South gate Main Entrance address is 3300 Golf Road, Brookfield, Illinois 60513.  A train station, the Hollywood (Zoo Stop) on Metra’s B.N.S.F. line, is a few blocks to the south of the South Gate entrance.  The Website is www.czs.org/Brookfield-ZOO/Home.


[1] A 5K race is a road-running competition over a distance of 5,000 meters (five kilometers).

[2] The address is 8400 31st Street, Brookfield, Illinois 60513.

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