LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Mascot Tapper the camel and a few dozen school children helped the Louisville Zoo and Louisville Water Company unveil the zoo's new drinking water stations on Thursday morning.
A grant from the Louisville Water Foundation made it possible for the Louisville Zoo to purchase the new fountains, which will accompany an expanded education effort on the value of water for animals, their habitats and people.
The eight stations allow visitors to easily refill water bottles and reusable containers. Messaging on the importance of staying hydrated is included on each station, the Louisville Zoo said. Visitors to the zoo are encouraged to bring a reusable bottle from home or may purchase a co-branded bottle in the zoo's gift shop.
In addition to helping visitors stay hydrated, the stations are good for the environment . Each water station has a counter that shows the equivalent number of bottles being refilled -- and how many plastic water bottles have been prevented from going into landfills.
The zoo said that patrons have already filled 52,000 bottles worth of water since March, which reduced the number of water bottles going to landfills by 52,000.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer was on hand to try out the new filling stations on Thursday.
"One of the reasons we're having such success as a city and have such great momentum in our economy is that in Louisville, we know how to come together for the common good of our city," Mayor Fischer said in a statement. "Louisville Water, the Louisville Water Foundation and the Louisville Zoo show us once again the great things that are possible when we come together."