Lions and tigers and beers — oh my!

The first annual Lions, Tigers, and Beers Festival, hosted by the Associated Humane Societies and Popcorn Park Animal Refuge, will take place Saturday, June 11 from 4  to 7 p.m at the 7-acre zoo on Humane Way in Forked River.

Located in the Pine Barrens of New Jersey, Popcorn Park opened in 1977 as a sanctuary for displaced, neglected, and abused wildlife and farm animals to live out the remainder of their lives.

Over the years, Popcorn Park has become a permanent home to over 200 exotics, wildlife, farm animals, and birds who have suffered injury, exploitation, handicap, injury, and abandonment.

Peacock at Popcorn Park Zoo
Peacock at Popcorn Park Zoo (Popcorn Park Zoo)

"We hope you will join us for an afternoon of seeing the lifesaving work we provide to the animals at the Popcorn Park while enjoying pilsner with the peacocks, lager with the lions, or a Belgian with the bears," said CEO Jerry Rosenthal.

Participants can enjoy local beer, wine, cocktails, and mocktails, plus food vendors, and live entertainment, all while learning about the 200-plus rescued wild animals in the refuge's care.

Popcorn Park
Bill Doyle, Townsquare media

Featured breweries will include Ross Brewing, Riverhorse Brewing, Vinyl Brewing, Cape May Brewing, The Seed Brew Project, and Berlin Brewing.

Enjoy tasty treats from food trucks on hand including Mexiboys, Wandering Street, Dags Dippers, and Jasmine's Nadas. Vegetarian and vegan options will also be available.

Foster, a kangaroo brought to the Popcorn Park Zoo
Foster, a kangaroo brought to the Popcorn Park Zoo (Popcorn Park Zoo)

Ticket prices are:

General Admission - $45

Designated Driver - $15

VIP - $65

All patrons will receive a complimentary 5-ounce collectible tasting glass, a wristband, and an entry to the park featuring over 30 New Jersey vendors.

VIP admission ticket holders will also receive a custom event T-shirt and an event swag bag.

For more information about registration, vendors or sponsorships for the Lions, Tigers, and Beers Festival visit

Jen Ursillo is a reporter and anchor for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach her at

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