Frequently Asked Questions
Why was the game farm started?
In the 1950’s to 1972, Olympic Game Farm (then called Disney’s Wild Animal Ranch) was originally designed as a holding facility for the animal actors of Disney Studios. During breaks from filming, the animals were trained, housed, and cared for while waiting for future filming. Disney Studios had asked us to keep the public and cameras out of the Farm. However, in the summer of 1972 after Roy Disney’s passing, we allowed people in to see what the Farm was all about. This informal opening was also a test to see if we could achieve our long-term goals in caring for the animals without a steady income from Disney Studios—to see if we could make it on our own. After that summer, we let Disney Studios know how well we did. Disney Studios ultimately held a vote from their Board of Directors and decided it was ok to continue to be open to the public and retain any earnings received. That same year, we officially opened to the public as a private wildlife organization and became incorporated in 1973.
Lloyd and Catherine Beebe (Founders) had spent most of their savings from film making on new pens, fencing, and training fields. The Beebe’s felt there was no better place than on the Olympic Peninsula—friendly people and a great climate that was never too hot or too cold. It was always their intent, and continues to be, that the animals keep receiving the attention, respect, and care long after their film work is completed.
Where do the animals come from?
Most of the Olympic Game Farm’s animals are the offspring of our past animal actors. Several others are either rescues; overflow from other licensed animal facilities; retired from acting in the entertainment industry (other trainers); or we just received as gifts/donations from licensed or properly authorized individuals.
How do you afford to feed them?
Currently, all proceeds from tourism are put into animal care and feeding. This includes all operating costs (employees, licensing, feed, utilities, repairs, etc.) associated in caring for our animals. In the past, film making and tourism was the mainstay; however, as the years and societal attitudes have evolved the film industry genre, live animal actors are no longer in high demand. We do receive donations from the local dairy farms and equestrians, or from a farm hobbyist. Income made from the summer season carries the Farm through the lean winter months. This presents tough budgeting constraints and is a tremendous struggle each year.
Do you accept random donations?
Yes, the Olympic Game Farm does accept any, reasonable donations. Naturally, the best donation is monetarily but we will consider all other types.
Are you open year round?
Olympic Game Farm is open year round, but will be closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day in order to spend time with our families.
What is the difference between a wildlife park and a game farm?
A wildlife park/zoo is usually publicly funded by city, county, and/or state funds or a group of investors. Game farms are usually in connection with commerce, such as breeding, selling, or trading and are privately funded by the owners. Some game farms are associated with “canned” hunting but Olympic Game Farm does not practice this. In our case, “Game Farm” denotes that there are game animals located and housed here but not for hunting.
Are the animals at the Game Farm still used by the movie industry?
Yes, we have used a few of our current animals several films, “Serenity Farms”, “Captain Fantastic” and a National Geographic documentary on black bears and city encroachment. We do have one animal that has been retired by longtime animal trainer friend. We continue to be interested in future opportunities and are actively training several wildlife animals.
How long does the tour take?
Typical drive tour takes anywhere from 45 minutes to 1 hour but it is completely self-paced. The admission ticket is good for all day until closing. On major holiday weekends, wait times and lines can and do occur, thus extending drive tour time.
Are we allowed to bring our own bread to feed?
Yes, you can bring your own bread in to feed, wheat or whole grain bread is only permitted. Multi grains and other heavily grained wheat bread can be too rich for the animals so just a basic wheat bread is needed. (No white, sourdough, etc.)
Why can’t we bring in fruit or other food items to feed the animals?
You can donate fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, or fresh caught fish to Olympic Game Farm but U.S.D.A. (APHIS) has a strict rule about customers feeding our animals. Wheat bread is the ONLY type of feed allowed to be given by the customers. Olympic Game Farm will accept fresh fruit and fresh vegetables but it will need to be inspected by us and fed out by us or under strict observation if permitted by senior management. Bread has been proven to be an excellent source of fat and fiber for our animals. Large animals differ from humans and domesticated animals tremendously, with their fat & nutritional needs. Rotten, moldy, or freezer dried items will not be accepted. We cannot accept anything from your personal freezer. Please call and check first about any other food items.
What other type of feed is given to the animals besides bread?
Each animal has a well-balanced nutritional diet based on their nutritional needs by our veterinarian care plan. Meat, poultry, fish, nuts, berries, vegetables, fruit, roots, vitamins, minerals, hay, & grain are fed daily, during business hours and after closing.
We do ask for customers to not take it upon themselves to decide what is best to feed our animals. Any food items other than the bread brought to feed, will be held at the gate until the tour is over and it will be returned. Violators will be asked to leave.
We ask this, not only because of the U.S.D.A. rule, each animal is carefully monitored and fed daily. Some of the animals are not allowed certain foods due to medical reasons, dental problems, allergies, being strict carnivores, etc.
We have had customers sneak in produce/meat before, and quite a few of our animals fell violently ill. While the untrained customers thought they were doing what was best, we almost lost some of our precious animals.
Are pets allowed inside our vehicle while driving?
Yes, pets are allowed as long as they are kept inside an enclosed vehicle and unable to escape your vehicle. All pets must be on a leash.
Are convertibles/open vehicles permitted?
All vehicles must be fully enclosed at all times for your safety. Jeeps, Broncos, etc. must have sides and tops on, making it fully enclosed. NO MOTORCYCLES, SCOOTERS, MOPEDS, OR BICYCLES ARE PERMITTED on drive tour.
What was the difference between the original walk tour and the new “Mini Tour”?
The difference between the original walk and the new mini tour is:
– in the original tour, a tour guide would walk visitors through the predator area in addition to the barn and aquarium and was only offered to groups of 10 people or more when scheduled in advance at an additional charge.
– In the “mini tour”, all visitors can enjoy the experience at their own leisure but the predator compound is not included.
Why are you no longer allowing the original walking tours to take place this year?
We are upgrading the predator enclosure area. Rest assured the animals in the predator area will still be in view from your vehicle on the driving tour. For safety reasons, we cannot allow visitors on foot around the construction.
The original tours will still be offered to schools and other educational groups throughout the year, please call for details or scheduling.