Zoo Fund-Raiser

Ventura County is without a zoo. No roaring tigers; no frolicking monkeys or sea otters to enjoy.

That could soon change, however. Moorpark College's Exotic Animal Training and Management school--a unique program that places students in jobs working with animals all over the world--wants to expand into a full-fledged zoo.

To raise funds, an open house "Spring Spectacular" will be held from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday on campus. Featured will be guided tours of the training facility, training demonstrations and question-and-answer presentations. "Participants will view our animals from areas that won't be available to the public," said Susan Cox, education coordinator.

"There are many people in the county that drive to the Santa Barbara or L.A. zoos," Cox said, "so we want to accommodate them."

Cox said the would-be zoo will include a large grazing area for water buffalo, gazelles and the like, and a marine mammal exhibit, complete with large training and presentation tanks.

"We'll also have a large-cat exhibit with lions, tigers and cougars," she said.

The day's activities include:

* 8 a.m.: 5K walk and 10K run (call for registration).

* 9 a.m.: Pancake breakfast (held outside, by the football stadium; admission is $2.50).

* 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Exotic Animal Training and Management shows, tours and demonstrations (11 a.m., 1, 3 and 5 p.m.)

* 7 p.m.: Dance (Admission $5; $3.50 for students and senior citizens.)

A variety of food, merchandise and games booths, along with environmental exhibits, will be offered.

Tickets are $6; $4 for students and senior citizens; $1 for children. The campus is at 7075 Campus Way, Moorpark. Call 378-1441.

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