Friday, September 27, 2013

Fisher Price Friday - Play Family Zoo

It's starting to cool down here in Arizona (only 93 yesterday) so I'm starting to think about taking the kids back to the zoo.  Around here it's a fall/winter/early spring destination, not for the summer!  When we can't go to the zoo the kids can still see the animals with our Play Family Zoo #916.  One of the last classic Fisher Price Little People sets it was made from 1984-1987.  It's a big set with many pieces (29).

The zoo came with 11 loose animals and 2 attached animals.  The animals include an elephant, hippo, ape, mountain lion, vulture, baby lion, seal, two parrots and two monkeys.  The attached animals are a lion and a hippo.  There are some color variations to the animals, the hippo can be either blue or brown and the goat blue or brown.  However they must be alternating colors.  Some collectors and children have complained about the animals in the 916 Zoo since they are molded plastic with no moving parts unlike other Fisher Price animals that came before (Circus Train, Farm).

The set has 4 animal food trays, one in each shape which fit into spaces on the zoo base.  The feeding trays can be any of the colors show as well as orange, but there should be only one of each color.  In addition there would never be an orange or red together (according to This Old Toy).

The zoo tram includes three cars; a truck, passenger car and a feed car.  The tram has a path to drive under the zoo, up the back, and back down the front.

The picnic table and benches are usually green, but can also be blue however that color is pretty rare.  There are no lithographs on this picnic table.

According to the Fisher Price Catalogues and box cover photos there were may variations to the people included in the Zoo set.  Pictured are most of the potential little people.  I forgot one, a orange boy with yellow cap facing forward (seen in the 1985 photo below).  However, even though the catalogues showed these specific pieces it doesn't mean that there were not other variations or combinations.  Ah, the mystery of fisher price! ;)

The blue dad with heat stamped hair, green zoo keeper with brown hat and the orange boy with yellow hat are all exclusives to the Zoo.

1984 & 1987




Here are three Zookeeper options, there may have been more!  The dark red zookeeper was also found in the Western Town #934.  The light green zookeeper is a pilot found in helicopter sets.

The back of the zoo has the ape habitat, tram tunnel, hippo habitat and the ramp up to the top.

The hippo is attached and has a colorful lithograph of water, lily pads and the hippos open mouth (it opens when the tram goes by)!  There is a square space for his food tray to fit in. 

Underneath is the ape habitat.  There is a lithograph of a ape playing near his tire swing.  In the floor is an oval space for the ape's fruit tray to fit.  

The ramp up to the top of the zoo has teeth to keep the tram from falling back.  There is also space on the back for the mountain lion to climb if he wants to.

Across from the ape habitat is a lithograph of a snack bar compete with cotton candy, popcorn and a soda.  Also a black and white dog looking eagerly at the cotton candy.

The tram tunnel is directly underneath the aviary/birdhouse/gazebo.  The birdhouse can be either orange or brown and is removable.  The tree inside is also removable and has places for the parrots to hold on.  The gazebo has many places for the monkeys to hang from.

The removable tree has three branches for the parrots to hold onto.  Also a nest on the top for the vulture to sit on top of.  In the base you can see a little bunny molded into the plastic trunk.

The front of the zoo has a space for the seal to sit on.  He moves around in a circle on the post when an orange knob is pushed around (see the first photo).

Behind the seal are stairs perfect for either the people to climb or for the mountain lion to stand on.  There is a lithograph of signs telling the Little People where everything is.

The front of the Zoo has the lion and elephant habitats.  The lion is permanent and you can pull him in and out of his cave.  He has a circle feeding tray with a big steak inside.  His baby lion cub can sit in front of him.  The elephant stands next to him (removable) and has a triangle feeding tray with hay inside.

Whew, that's a lot of photos!  I hope you enjoyed today's trip to the zoo!

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