The Elephant Discovery Center
The Elephant Sanctuary
The Elephant Sanctuary is a 2,700-acre refuge in Hohenwald, Tennessee, home to a herd of retired circus and zoo elephants. Since the sanctuary itself is not open to the public, H+R's exhibits at the multisensory Elephant Discovery Center provide an up-close encounter with the residents of this safe haven. Through immersive media programs and interactives that feature the elephants in their new home, visitors (especially children and school groups) learn about the elephants while still allowing the elephants to truly enjoy their retirement. Features include “communication stations” that use pushbutton-activated audio and custom illustration to interpret elephant calls and body language. One station even features subsonic elephant calls, not within the range of human hearing, but made visible as glass pellets vibrating on a timpani-like membrane. Flipbooks at each station convey the body postures and movements that elephants use to communicate, and also serve as an inexpensive take-home purchase available in the fully-integrated retail area.