Home Lifestyle Earth Day celebrations at the North Carolina Zoo

Earth Day celebrations at the North Carolina Zoo

Photo by NC Zoo

ASHEBORO — Join the North Carolina Zoo for our Party for the Planet on Earth Day, Saturday, April 22, 2023, and help save gorillas in the wild.

The Zoo partners with the global recycling project: “Gorillas on the Line,” celebrating its fifth anniversary in 2023. Many cell phones and entertainment devices contain recyclable materials, including a critical substance called coltan. Coltan is a metallic ore found mainly in the African forests that gorillas call home. The strip mining for this essential material for our smart devices is devastating gorillas’ natural habitats in the wild.

Celebrate five years with a $5 donation to GOTL. Bring an old cell phone, tablet, iPod, MP3 player, or e-reader to the Zoo’s gorilla habitat in Africa on Saturday, April 22, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for recycling and receive fun keepsake items for helping save gorillas. A list of acceptable devices is listed below.

The Zoo’s gorilla keepers will also be on hand to answer any of your burning questions about gorillas.

Additional activities on Earth Day throughout the Zoo include:

  • Our popular Kidzone Playground will be a ‘hive’ of activity hosting Pollinator Friendly activities and encouraging nature learning for kids of all ages.
  • Earn a Zoo Trekker Badge! Please stop by our Zoo Trekker booths and pick up a scavenger-hunt activity book for your day at the Zoo.
  • Keep your eyes open for pop-up programs and keeper talks happening at various locations throughout the day.

Learn more about Conservation:

The Zoo is actively involved in helping save gorillas in the wild. For more than a decade, the Zoo has been working with the Wildlife Conservation Society on implementing a range of cutting-edge technologies and approaches to conserve these endangered animals.

To learn more about the Zoo’s efforts in international conservation, please visit www.nczoo.org/conservation/international.


The Zoo is home to a bachelor troop of five western lowland gorillas: silverback Mosuba, blackback (sub-adult) Hadari, and adolescent males Apollo, Bomassa and Dembe.

Devices can be in any condition, working or non-working.

Devices acceptable for recycling:

  • Cell Phones, iPhones, Androids, bar phones, flip phones, bag phones
  • Tablets, iPads, E-Readers (Kindle, etc.)
  • Kid’s e-readers and tablets
  • MP3 Players, iPods, Zunes, or any other music player
  • PDAs, PALM Devices and any personal Digital Assistant Devices
  • Digital Cameras: small, retractable, or fixed-lens digital cameras
  • Digital Audio: any of the XM/Sirius type radios,
  • Roku-type boxes & Video
  • Small Laptops and any devices with a screen smaller than 15″ Diagonal

Not acceptable for recycling:

  • Wireless Home Telephones
  • Flat-Screen TV/Computer Monitors
  • Non-digital Cameras
  • Satellite converter boxes
  • Desktop Computers
  • Large Laptops

Gorillas on the Line is a global initiative created by the Gorilla Species Survival Plan through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

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