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Beardsley Zoo, Bridgeport
(3.2/5 based on 320+ 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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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • they were preparing for Halloween, which sadly scared our grandson a bit, but he loves the prairies dogs and farm so much. We had to cut short the visit because of the scary stuff but usually we'd hav...  more »
  • Beardsley zoo is truly a beautiful respite in an urban setting. The zoo features an animal collection of north and south American species. Great day for toddlers and youngsters who can enjoy the playg...  more »
  • For a family, the zoo fee would be a little pricey. As an educational tool, it is great for all if one reads all that is available. For most animals, they seem happy and content and are doing well in ...  more »