From the Desk of Dan Ashe

Party for the Planet Continues with Video Contest

Party for the Planet®, an eight-week long observance between Earth Day (April 22) and World Oceans Day (June 8) is AZA’s largest public engagement effort to inspire others to respect, protect, and conserve wildlife and wild places. This year, with support from the Disney Conservation Fund, Party for the Planet featured a new theme, “Spring into Action,” encouraging families to volunteer within their communities.

Over 120 of our accredited aquariums and zoos took part in Party for the Planet activities this year, with various family-friendly projects ranging from trash cleanups to citizen science to habitat restoration. AZA members hosted over 150 events, engaged over 800 volunteers, and dedicated over 1,930 hours to conservation projects. So far, we’ve collected 400 pounds of trash, cleaned 20 miles of coastline, planted 3,000 pollinator-friendly plants, and recycled 12,000 pounds of electronics. And we’re not done yet!

Photo Courtesy of Charles Paddock Zoo

AZA-accredited facilities are engaging people in conservation actions every day! By sharing their stories, we can inspire other communities, people, and organizations to take part in actions that better our planet.

That’s why AZA is hosting our first Party for the Planet video contest, giving AZA-accredited aquariums and zoos who offered Spring Into Action events the chance to tell the story of their event. Entries will be evaluated on volunteerism impact, community engagement, and conservation message. The entries will be narrowed to a top ten by a panel of judges. Beginning July 20, AZA will open the contest for public voting on Facebook and YouTube through the end of July.

Even after Party for the Planet and the contest end, we will be making a measurable, meaningful impact. The winning organization will get to designate the recipient of a $25,000 conservation donation and second place will get to designate the recipient of a $10,000 conservation donation.  We are thrilled to be able to offer this opportunity to our members.

The official contest rules are below.

The winning videos will be shared and the members recognized, along with the donation recipients, at the AZA Annual Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana, in September. Good luck and I hope to see you all there!


Contest Rules

Video submissions will be accepted from June 8 to July 8, 2019 11:59 pm ET.

●Video submissions will only be accepted from AZA accredited or certified related facilities who offered a family-friendly volunteer opportunity as part of their branded Part for the Planet®: Spring Into Action events.

●Video submissions must be more than 45 and less than 60 seconds and submitted in .mov or .mp4 formats. Videos not meeting these requirements may not be considered.

●Videos must be accompanied by a completed application to be considered.

●Video should include why you chose this event and how it positively impacted your community. Include a written submission of a 25 words or less quote on your activities, volunteer event and impact on your community as well as the requested information for the conservation organization that would receive the donation.

●Video submissions should comply with the organizational policy regarding staff access and filming, remain mindful of safety while working with any animals, and observe intellectual property rights. When possible, submissions should be coordinated with the organization’s public relations and/or marketing department. Once a video is submitted, AZA owns all rights to the content and can use the content for any purpose.

●The top 10 submissions will be decided by a panel determined by AZA. Submissions will be judged on: 1) Volunteerism impact, community engagement and conservation impact and 2)Clarity of conservation significance, goals, and objectives of the donation recipient, according to the Video Contest Application.

●Online Voting will be July 15- July 31, 2019. Online voting will occur at the AZA’s website,

●In the event of tie  social media engagement will be considered in the tie breaking decision.

●One organization will be selected as first place and will designate the recipient of a $25,000 donation to a conservation organization or project, subject to AZA-approval.

●One organization will be selected as second place and will designate the recipient of a $10,000 donation to a conservation organization or project, subject to AZA-approval.

For an application, contact  .Upload video file and completed application to:

Please name your files in the following format, replacing “OrganizationName” with your organization’s name:

Video file – “OrganizationNamePFPVideo2019” e.g. “”

Application – “OrganizationNamePFPVideoAppl2019” e.g. “AudubonZooPFPVideoApp2019.doc”.

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