American Express and LaCaille restaurant will host a benefit fund raiser Aug. 13 for Hogle Zoo at LaCaille, 9565 Wasatch Blvd.

American Express has provided a sizable donation to the zoo, and LaCaille has organized a buffet dinner, big band dancing and fireworks display.Hogle Zoo animals - penguins, cougars, stone sheep, exotic parrots and a llama - will be transported to the LaCaille grounds for the evening.

This marks the first time Utah's Hogle Zoo has been the recipient of an elegant and formal benefit, said Zoo Director LaMar Farnsworth. The event marks the beginning of aggressive fund-raising efforts for capital improvements and developments, he says.

All new exhibits and improvements at the zoo are funded through grants, donations and memberships. Family memberships are $30 and provide a year of unlimited admission to the Hogle Zoo and more than 100 zoos across the country.

The zoo's operating revenues come from attendance, concession sales, and a grant from the Utah State Legislature.

Last year, the legislature granted the zoo around $600,000 for the animals' care and feed.

Reservations for the zoo benefit are $75 per person or $150 per couple and can be made by calling 942-1751.