A to Z 2021 – Z is for the Zoo and Zuckerberg SFG

We are lucky to have the San Francisco Zoo so close. I can remember visiting when I was a child and I revisited several times when the kids went on school field trips. Our next door neighbor works there and she has told me a couple of times to go and hold a koala but so far I haven’t.

In 2007 a Siberian Tiger named Tatiana attacked some visitors who were taunting her and throwing things at her. She was put down, which was sad because it really wasn’t her fault. That was the first visitor fatality due to an animal attack in the history of the organization. Of course the zoo was closed to visitors for a while and they made modifications so it could not happen again, although how do you modify for stupid visitors?

Right now the Zoo is open but you need to make a reservation to go. It is a fun place to visit, however, it is very close to the beach so the weather can be a bit iffy sometimes. Dress in layers. There are some amazing animals who live there but sadly no elephants since 2005. Many different exhibits and beautiful gardens as well. There is also a carousel to ride and a Children’s Petting Zoo. That’s where our neighbor works so if you go, say hello to Irene and tell her Janet sent you!

Our final “Z” is for Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center. It used to be just San Francisco General Hospital but in 2015 Mark Zuckerberg and his wife donated $75 million toward the renovation project and so they renamed the hospital after them.

The hospital is very impressive from the outside. It is a teaching hospital for the UCSF medical students and provides 24-hour psychiatric services, just in case you were wondering. According to their website, it is the “safest place in California to have a baby and is the only certified “Baby-Friendly” hospital in San Francisco, also nice to know.

“Everyone is welcome here,” is their motto, which brings me to the hearts (you didn’t think I would forget did you?) In 2004 the “Hearts in San Francisco” art project was started by the San Francisco General Hospital Foundation as a means of fundraising. The idea was taken from the song by Tony Bennett, “I left my heart in San Francisco.”

Each year sculptures are designed and placed throughout the city including Union Square. At the end of the year the hearts are auctioned off to raise money for the hospital. Here are this years designs.

There is a map of over 80 hearts that are around the town. Some of them are in private residences or in buildings not accessible to the public although that seems kind of selfish. I mean, if I was going to pay for a statue like this, I certainly would show it off. I found a few of them but ran out of time to find more.

I am adding the hearts to my “list of things to go back to,” kind of like a TBR list of places instead of books.

And we’ve come to the end of the A to Z Challenge for 2021! I made it! I have really had a great time going exploring for you. I hope you have had an interesting journey as well. Oddly enough, what started because of a coloring book and the fact that my son worked in San Francisco turned into a great staycation. The pandemic limited my complete participation in some of the places but I think I managed to capture the essence of each area. One of my vision cards for this year is Experience and I can definitely say I’ve had some experiences so far. Time to start thinking of what to do for next year. My reflection post will have a link to all the places in case you missed any and I am definitely going to use May to go visit all of the other interesting blog participants this year that I didn’t get a chance to read. Another staycation! Thanks so much for all the comments and kind remarks that you have left for me. It is sincerely appreciated!

About scr4pl80

I'm a 60-ish, married, mom to 3, creative soul looking to make the world a better place one smile at a time.
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37 Responses to A to Z 2021 – Z is for the Zoo and Zuckerberg SFG

  1. cassmob says:

    How cool about the hearts! I remember seeing some but didn’t know they were then auctioned off. I was infuriated about the Tiger being put down instead of the idiots who taunted it. Congratulations on completing the A go Z journey. I may have come along late but I enjoyed your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Vidya Tiru says:

    congratulations! and we recently were thinking about visiting the zoo (deciding between the SF and the Oakland one).. glad I read that we need to make reservations..
    Thank you for visiting me during this journey.. and taking me on a tour of this beloved city by the bay
    Zip Zap Zooming My Way to Zeugma

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: A to Z 2021 – Reflection | Janet's Smiles

  4. Ohhhh you put the koalas and the zebras next to each other, how awesome! Congratulations for completing the AtoZ challenge. I’m a little behind with my comments but I sure hope we can encourage each other throughout the year by popping in for a visit now and then. And can’t wait for another round next year.
    Have a great day!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Tamara says:

    “How do you modify for stupid visitors?” Good question, and how sad! Wasn’t there an incident including a gorilla in another zoo a few years ago?

    LOVE the hearts! Are they there to stay? I would love to see some of them when and if it’s safe to travel overseas again.

    Thank you so much for taking me along this month, I enjoyed exploring with you!
    Congratulations on completing another A- Z!


    Liked by 1 person

    • scr4pl80 says:

      The hearts change every year apparently but they have been doing them for several years now. That’s why you can find them all over the city as people/companies buy them. I am glad you enjoyed my wanderings through the city!


  6. J-Dub says:

    Awww. I love the hearts. I wish I had the kind of money to afford one. I’d definitely put in a place of prominence for all to enjoy. This series made me want to travel again if I could force myself to get back on an airplane :). Thanks for the trip Janet. It was so much fun stowing away in your “suitcase”.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Congratulations on finishing the challenge!!!
    I loved seeing the pictures and I’m glad you had fun exploring too!
    But how cool is the Hearts thing? So much fun to go searching for these hearts all over the place!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. LA says:

    This was a fun ride!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Those hearts are fun. I especially like the peace sign one. I’m glad you had fun exploring San Francisco for your A to Z. When COVID hit and we had to cancel our trip to Scotland, we ended up doing a staycation which turned out to be so much fun. Sometimes you can make lemonade out of lemons. Weekends In Maine

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Great posts, Janet! I enjoyed exploring the city by the bay. Well, except for that big thing suspended over the water! 😭😜😄


    Liked by 1 person

  11. Iain Kelly says:

    The zoo looks fantastic, and interesting about the Zuckerberg hospital – he gets a lot of bad press, but I had never heard about this donation. Thanks for the tour, it’s been great. If I ever make it to San Francisco, I now know exactly where to visit!


    Liked by 1 person

    • scr4pl80 says:

      Yes, there were some protests and controversy about naming it for him but I think it was the hospital’s idea not his. Glad I entertained you with my little travels. You definitely entertain me with your stories!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Congrats on reaching the end… I always feel sad when it’s over! Love those hearts snd what fun it would be to find them all! Yes go hold that Koala? How awesome that would be.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. ghostmmnc says:

    I’ve really enjoyed taking the tour of SF with you on the A2Z! Lots of great places to see and learn about. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Congratulations, and thank you for giving us such a nice A to Z, getting to know San Francisco. I’ll have missed some of your posts but hope to get time later to check them.
    And I am in love with the hearts, they are amazing, and what a great way to raise funds, very creative.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Liam says:

    Congratulations on completing your A to Z! I enjoyed a virtual visit to San Francisco where I haven’t been in nearly 20 years.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Ally Bean says:

    The hearts are pretty and the sculpture in front of the hospital is clever, but those penguins are the best. I need to go to the zoo. Congrats for making it through the challenge again. You are the Queen of A to Z.

    Liked by 1 person

    • scr4pl80 says:

      Thanks Ally! The penguins are pretty cute aren’t they? All dressed up in their tuxes. I imagine the sculpture is a nod to the baby friendliness of the hospital, which I never knew was a thing until this year, way after I had my 3.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. I love the story of the hearts. Congratulations on finishing the challenge, Janet. I had a wonderful time visiting one of my favorite cities and seeing it from your eyes. And it delights me you had a good time gathering intel and photos. I hope you’ll report at some point of additional hearts you find.

    Liked by 1 person

    • scr4pl80 says:

      Thanks Deborah. I most definitely will report back when I find more or if I go exploring to find the Lands End Labyrinth or any of those other fun things! Thanks for coming along.


  18. And not a single picture of a hippo…. well then….

    Congratulations on finishing!! WOOHOO

    Liked by 1 person

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