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BREC’s Baton Rouge Zoo Receives National Award for Marketing Campaign

July 08, 2013

BREC's Baton Rouge Zoo was recently selected to receive the National Kudo's Marketing Award by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). NRPA will present the award publicly at a special reception at the association's 2013 Congress & Exposition in Houston, Texas on Wednesday, Oct. 9.

Each year, NRPA National Awards are presented to individuals and agencies across the U.S. to honor their efforts-both professional and personal-in the field of parks and recreation. Recipients are selected from a pool of applicants by NRPA's National Awards and Scholarship Committee, and are chosen for excellence in a variety of topics, including professional and voluntary service, programming, leadership, research and public outreach. The Kudo's Marketing Award is the only marketing award that the NRPA awards each year after receiving hundreds of applications.

For BREC's Baton Rouge Zoo, the overall message of the 2012 marketing campaign was "Geaux Wild." This particular message was chosen for its double meaning: "Geaux" is the colloquial version of "go" in Louisiana as the word often denotes support for something. Using the phrase "Geaux Wild" helped the Zoo create a message of "support our wildlife conservation efforts." Geaux Wild's second meaning was a call to action: go to the Zoo and see what is new at your community's Zoo.

"The Geaux Wild campaign was exceedingly effective in creating public awareness. Our community immediately identifies with the word "Geaux," and the Zoo capitalized on this instant identification to lend authenticity, reconizability and likeability to our Zoo and parks system," said Mary Woods, former Friends of the Zoo Marketing Director.

A zoo creative team brainstorming session led to the 2012 "Geaux Wild" marketing campaign which was created, designed and implemented by Woods, Kris Bordelon, Graphic Designer for BREC and Erin O'Neill, Publicity and Marketing Manager for BREC.

"NRPA is pleased to honor our nation's park and recreation heroes-agencies and individuals who work tirelessly and with passion to improve the lives of their citizens and make their communities great," said Barbara Tulipane, President and CEO of NRPA.

The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing park, recreation and conservation efforts that enhance quality of life for all people. Through its network of 30,000 recreation and park professionals and citizens, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy lifestyles, recreation initiatives, and conservation of natural and cultural resources.

For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA's flagship publication,
Parks & Recreation, visit


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