Nyberg: Beardsley Zoo Executive Director Gregg Dancho talks tenure


In 2022, Bridgeport’s Beardsley Zoo will hit the century mark.

Its 100 years make it among the oldest in the country.

For more than 40 of those years, Executive Director Gregg Dancho has been a staple there.

He first volunteered in 1975, continually paying his dues until becoming its executive director in 1984.

When you chat with Dancho, he usually has a snake around because he loves the world of reptiles. In this case, it was a California King Snake, which came to the zoo when it was very young.

Related Content: Meet Beardsley Zoo’s new, rare (and adorable) leopard cubs

He was one of seven children. They grew up in Stratford, and, as a kid, the zoo was his Disney World.

“An endowed chair is, I’m very happy about it. A high honor. It’s an honor for me. I really appreciate it. What we’re trying to do here is look to the future,” he said.

“So, we could have money be put in my name into this endowment so the zoo can last for another 100 years and that to me is pretty important. I mean, I’ve spent over 45 years, almost 45 years working there. The zoo is going to be 100 years…So, almost half of its existence, I’ve been a part of the zoo, so I really would like to make sure that the zoo moves on in the future,” he added.

To find out all about what’s going on at the Beardsley Zoo as summer nears, click here.

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