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Beardsley Zoo, Bridgeport

(3.2/5 based on 340 reviews on the web)
The Beardsley Zoo, located in Bridgeport, Connecticut, is the only zoo in the state of Connecticut. It includes one of the few carousels in the state.HistoryThe parkIn 1878, James W. Beardsley, a wealthy farmer, donated over of hilly, rural land bordering on the Pequonnock River with a distant view of Long Island Sound to the city of Bridgeport, on the condition that "the city shall accept and keep the same forever as a public park" In 1881, the city contracted Frederick Law Olmsted, famous for creating New York City's Central Park, to create a design for Beardsley Park. Olmsted described the existing land as "pastoral, sylvan and idyllic" and, in 1884, delivered his plan for a simple, rural park for the residents to enjoy: " is thoroughly rural and just such a countryside as a family of good taste and healthy nature would resort to, if seeking a few hours' complete relief from scenes associated with the wear and tear of ordinary town life... It is a better picnic ground than any possessed by the city of New York, after spending twenty million on parks... The object of any public outlay upon it should be to develop and bring out these distinctive local advantages, and make them available to extensive use in the future by large numbers of people."Fredrick Law Olmsted was the principal architect of the site. Architect Joseph W. Northrup designed Island Bridge, a bridge to an island in the park. In 1909, the city erected a statue created by Charles Henry Niehaus in honor of Beardsley at the park’s Noble Avenue entrance. Beardsley Park was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1999.
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  • I think this place is perfect because is not too big or too small and for the price you can't complain. They have a lot of animals exhibitions plus they take real good care of them. Always is fun to v...  more »
  • Went a few years ago with the kids and saw all the signs of animals with very little quality of life. No clean water. Pacing. Won't go back. 
  • A great option for a couple of hours. You can do the Zoo in an hour if you walk thru but for a nice day out give yourself 2 - 2.5 hours. Friendly staff, not packed but a good time for the kids.