Zoo's 'Cry Me a Cockroach' Promotion Is Back for V-Day

To, er, celebrate Valentine's Day, San Antonio Zoo will feed a roach named after your ex to an animal
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 30, 2023 8:47 AM CST
Say 'Happy Valentine's Day' With a ... Cockroach
"I love you."   (Getty Images/ErikKarits)

If you're not especially looking forward to Feb. 14 due to a recent breakup, one Texas venue has a promotion that could help mitigate the pain with a little old fashioned spite. The San Antonio Zoo is once again hosting its "Cry Me a Cockroach" fundraiser, with all monies raised going to "support the zoo's vision of securing a future for wildlife in Texas and around the world." How the zoo plans to do that: by allowing the heartbroken to name a cockroach after an ex (or a frenemy, bad boss, or otherwise annoying person) for $10, after which the zoo will feed said roach to an animal.

If you don't want to go the cockroach route, you can have a vegetable fed to an animal for $5, or a rodent for $25. The zoo's CEO, Tim Morrow, says not to worry about what the animals are eating, as "the cockroaches, rodents, and veggies are already part of the [animals'] typical diets," per a release. For those feeling particularly vengeful, People notes there's also a $150 upgrade to honor the really "difficult" people in your life, for the first 20 donors only: an "individualized video message" of whatever's being fed to the zoo animal sent to the person whose name you invoked.

The annual fundraiser has been quite popular in the past, with a zoo spokesperson telling CNN they took in more than 8,000 donations in 2022 from all over the US, as well as dozens of other nations. "Right now, we are on track to break last year's record, with Zach, Ray, and Adam being the most submitted ex-names so far," Cyle Perez says. Last year, the most popular names were Sarah and Jacob. It's not the first time zoos and other venues have hosted such unusual (and more biting) Valentine's Day promotions: In addition to cockroach-naming, there's been snake-naming, free divorces, and turning in ex-lovers to the law. (More strange stuff stories.)

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