Amidst the restaurants that offer delicious comfort food, beautiful golf courses, the Frisco Depot Museum, and a host of outdoor recreational fun, the city of Hugo, OK, is also home to the Endangered Ark Foundation. This incredible sanctuary, only a ¼ mile W of Highway 93, was started in 1993 and is home to the second largest herd of Asian elephants in America.
The mission of this foundation is to “ensure the future of Asian elephants in North America, provide a retirement ranch for circus elephants, and educate the public about this endangered species.” If you have the chance to spend time at this ranch you will see that they knock this mission out of the park. The dedicated workers care for the elephants 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There are 25 bales of hay and 165 pounds of feed used every single day! The elephants have to be watered 4-5 times a day, have their tusks filed down, washed with a special soap every day, and get “pedicures” every couple of weeks. It is a lot of work but the people at the foundation completely love what they do, love the elephants, and their passion is inspiring and infectious.
While the foundation cannot accommodate walk in visitors, you can book a tour! At this time tours are only on Saturdays—on their website you can pick your month and which Saturday you would like to go. The tours last around an hour and you will get an up close and personal look at the elephants and a lot of education about their history, lives at the ranch and the care they receive. Rosie and Opal are two retired circus elephants that just returned to the ranch on September 15, 2014 so you will have the chance to meet some new residents! If you do not have time to stop in, you can always donate to be a part of helping the Endangered Ark Foundation.
The city of Hugo is just under an hour away from Broken Bow, OK on Hwy 70. This is a great weekend outing for guests staying with us at Beavers Bend Creative Escapes—plus this time of year the colors are simply stunning so why not enjoy some time surrounded by nature? Whether you are in for a week, weekend, or an overnight business trip, our private luxury cabins are the perfect home away from home. We have many different styles and sizes, each with their own charm and comfort. You can view all of our cabins and check availability online or call us anytime at (580) 306-2266.