September 28, 2011

Press Release: Squam Lakes Natural Science Center Receives AZA Accreditation

Science Center Celebrates Accreditation with Trail Admission Discount for All

Holderness, N.H. – Squam Lakes Natural Science Center today announced that they have been granted accreditation by The Association of Zoos and Aquarium’s (AZA) independent Accreditation Commission and is celebrating by giving back to its visitors. Through the month of October, the Science Center is offering a $5 off discount coupon (good for two people) on trail admission everyday. Visitors can take advantage of the special October discount by going to to download and print a coupon redeemable until November 1, 2011.

AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums undergo a thorough review that includes a detailed accreditation application as well as a multiple day on-site inspection by a team of experts from around the country. “By meeting high Association of Zoos and Aquariums Accreditation Standards, Squam Lakes Natural Science Center has demonstrated its leadership among zoos and aquariums,” said AZA President and CEO Jim Maddy. “Only the best of the best rise to this level, and we congratulate the professionals at Squam Lakes Natural Science Center for their hard work.”

To be accredited, Squam Lakes Natural Science Center underwent a thorough review to ensure it has and will continue to meet ever-rising standards, which include animal care, veterinary programs, conservation, education, and safety. AZA requires zoos and aquariums to successfully complete this rigorous accreditation process every five years in order to be members of the Association.

“Squam Lakes Natural Science Center is a great place for people to connect with the natural world and each other,” Maddy added.” Members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, including Squam Lakes Natural Science Center, support their communities with affordable family recreation and science-based education programs.”

The accreditation process includes a detailed application and meticulous on-site inspection by a team of trained zoo and aquarium professions. The inspecting team observes all aspects of the institution’s operation in areas such as animal care; keeper training; safety for visitors, staff, and animals; educational programs; conservation efforts; veterinary programs; financial stability; risk management; visitor services; and other areas. Finally, top officials are interviewed at a formal hearing of AZA’s independent Accreditation Commission, after which accreditation is granted, tabled, or denied. Any institution that is denied may reapply one year after the Commission’s decision is made.

Squam Lakes Natural Science Center first applied for and received AZA accreditation in 2006 and continues to be the only AZA accredited institution in northern New England. There are currently 225 AZA accredited institutions in the United States and abroad.

“We are thrilled to receive this recognition for the Science Center’s hard work and devotion to the highest possible standards in the industry,” said Iain MacLeod, Executive Director of Squam Lakes Natural Science Center. “In celebration of receiving accreditation and to acknowledge the thousands of visitors who have made the Science Center such a vibrant and successful institution over the last 40-plus years, I’m pleased to announce that we are offering a $5 discount coupon on trail admission for the entire month of October.”


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