Coloradans: Does the Swetsville Zoo still exist?

By all on-line accounts I could find, the Swetsville Zoo (in or near Ft. Collins, Colorado) was put out of business in 2009 because of commercial development in the area.

Yet I just found a few on-line articles or reviews, dated various times in 2011 and even 2012, that refer to it in the present tense – at the same address as mentioned by older articles.

There are plenty of on-line reviews and articles I can find that refer to it in the present tense, but in which I can find no mention of the date. An Og-damn curse on on-line news articles, reviews, and such that don’t have the date mentioned — which is way the hell too many of them

Has this attraction survived? Has it re-opened? Has it relocated?

It doesn’t look open on Google Maps or Street View to me, although at least some of the sculptures still seem to be there.

Street View image from July 2012.

Just along the road, there are parallel strips of Street View imagery from 2007 (on the westbound lane) and 2012 (on the eastbound lane). It looks to have changed rather a lot in five years.


And the same view in 2012.

There’s progress for you. :frowning:
Edit: you probably found this, but this article from March 2009 says it was due to close “within the next five years”.

Well, that’s too bad. It was an interesting place.

I had a Swetsville Zoo calendar that had pictures of the sculptures on each of the pages. I’m not sure if I still have it around any more.

The reason this comes to mind is that it was tangentially in the news lately. There was some news article that the owner’s son just got arrested on suspicion of some sort of sex crimes (I didn’t pay attention to the details), and the newswriter thought it was relevant to mention that he’s the owner’s son.

Speaking of the owner’s son being in the news…

This newspaper article, apparently from May 31st, says that a man named Donald Swets died in a car accident that day. The article notes that Donald is the son of Bill Swets:

Also found this from an article by Curt Swarm in the Nexis database. The article is dated October 11, 2012 and is from the Daily Gate City (Keokuk, Iowa):

Okay, so I just googled this again to see what’s going on.

I found this article, indicating that the son was arrested for “inappropriate touching” charges. Upon close inspection, it appears that this refers to a different son, and furthermore, the article is from October 2011. I think it was the article about the son who just died that got me googling around about this.

Various articles I’m seeing seem to disagree about the location. Most articles say the place is in (or near?) Ft. Collins. But some say it’s in Timnath. I’m not familiar with Colorado geography. Are Ft. Collins and Timnath more-or-less the same place?

The article Serronaulta linked says that some remnant of the park remains, and that other sculptures have been placed in public squares and parks around the town. How did that work? Did the city buy them? Or did Swets donate them? Or did the city just condemn the land using eminent domain, and they were just going to bulldoze it all anyway?

Here’s another article I just found with some history (older and current (3/2009)) about it:

There used to be a dinosaur holding a sign by the Harmony exit on I-25 North that indicated the exit to the Zoo. At the top of the Harmony exit ramp, you take a right to go to Timnath and a left to go to Fort Collins. However, if you ask anyone (not from Northern Colorado) where Timnath CO is, they probably wouldn’t know. Timnath is a very small town. Most people in CO know where Fort Collins is.