Riverbanks Zoo and Garden Celebrates 40 Millionth Guest

For Immediate Release: June 14, 2024

Riverbanks Hits a New Milestone

Columbia, SC – Riverbanks Zoo and Garden marked a significant milestone today as Peyton McMillan became the Zoo’s 40 millionth guest. Since opening its gates in 1974, Riverbanks has delighted visitors for 50 years. To commemorate this special occasion, Tommy Stringfellow, president and CEO of Riverbanks, presented the McMillans with a Family Explorer Membership and a Backstage Tour. 

“We were completely shocked when the staff told us we were the 40 millionth guests,” said McMillan. “We absolutely love Riverbanks, and this makes our visits even more special!” Stringfellow added, “I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate our 50th anniversary than by reaching this incredible milestone. It’s a remarkable year for us, filled with celebration and gratitude for the support we’ve received from the community and our guests over the decades.”

Riverbanks Zoo and Garden remains committed to creating unforgettable experiences for all its guests and looks forward to welcoming millions more in the years to come. Looking ahead, Stringfellow shared more about the Zoo’s vision for the future. “We are excited about our upcoming expansion, the ‘Bridge to the Wild,’ which will further enhance the visitor experience and allow us to continue our mission of conservation and education at Riverbanks and beyond.”  

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About Riverbanks Zoo and Garden: Riverbanks Zoo and Garden is home to more than 3,000 magnificent and fascinating animals and one of America’s best public gardens. The Zoo opened on April 25, 1974, and for five decades, has connected individuals, families and school children with the natural world. Riverbanks is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and is recognized as a global leader in animal care and welfare, education, recreation, science and wildlife conservation. It is the mission of the Zoo and Garden to create meaningful connections and inspire actions that will have a lasting impact on wildlife and wild places. For more information, visit riverbanks.org.