City of Pueblo and Pueblo Zoo Win Colorado Lottery Community Starburst Award

DENVER– The Colorado Lottery announced today that it has awarded the City of Pueblo and the Pueblo Zoo the 2007 Starburst Community Award for excellence the use of Lottery funds for the creation of the Islands of Life exhibit at the zoo. The city used $100,000 in Lottery funds to help bring the project to the zoo.

Islands of Life rehabilitated the historic Animal House and Monkey Island into a new complex of exhibits that opened to the public in April, 2007. The historic flavor of the features was restored, and combined with modern exhibits. The structures now exhibit more than 15 animal species, including hyraxes, meerkats, ring-tailed lemurs, RidriguesIslandfruit bats, squirrel monkeys, alligator snapping turtles, San Esteban Island Chuckwalla lizards and a python.

“The Pueblo Zoo is a great asset for the community,” said Betty Martinez, Colorado Lottery Commissioner. “It is wonderful the city took a historic exhibit and updated it so families will be able to enjoy it for years to come.”

The Colorado Lottery Starburst Awards recognize excellence in the use of Lottery proceeds for projects that promote community-building, partnership, conservation and commitment to the recreational needs of Colorado residents. The City of Pueblo and Pueblo Zoo competed in the Large Communities category for projects costing more than $1,000,000. The awards were judged by the Colorado Lottery Commission, Lottery management and a representative of the Lottery’s retail network.

Proceeds from the Colorado Lottery’s games - Scratch, Lotto, Powerball and Cash 5 - stay in Coloradoto improve the quality of life in the state. In Fiscal Year 2007, more than $117 million was returned to Colorado. Since the Lottery started in 1983, more than $1.9 billion has been returned to the state.

Lottery proceeds are distributed to three primary beneficiaries: Great Outdoors Colorado, Conservation Trust Fund and Colorado State Parks. These organizations then provide grants and direct funding for parks, recreation, open space acquisition, trails, wildlife and conservation education.

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October 8, 2007
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