Virginia Aquarium Winter Happenings 2013-14 - December 09, 2013
Countdown to 2014: Tuesday, December 31, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. Children and adults get ready for games, activities, and sparkling beverages (non-alcoholic) in the Aquarium’s Marsh Pavilion! Free with Aquarium admission.
IMAX® 3D Theater
The newest film showing at the Virginia Aquarium IMAX 3D Theater is Penguins 3D: An Epic Journey, One Special Penguin, A Family Tale, A Tale of Love and Survival in Penguin City. Narrated by David Attenborough, this film celebrates the destiny of a special King Penguin, who returns to his birthplace in the sub-Antarctic. Known as Penguin City, the island is home to hundreds of albatrosses, fur seals and brawling elephant seals as well as six million penguins. Somehow our hero must earn his place among the island inhabitants and fulfill his destiny by finding a mate and raising a family. What follows is the story of the most challenging time in a King Penguin’s life, when he is driven to nurture and defend his offspring against harsh weather and fierce predators. Movie schedules for Penguins 3D and other movies and advance ticket sales are available at www.virginiaaquarium.com or by calling (757) 385-FISH.
Winter Wildlife Boat Trips
Winter obviously changes our familiar landscape but the sea offers some amazing differences as well. To get a different perspective, the Virginia Aquarium offers two hour Winter Wildlife Boat Trips. Guests will find on the 65-foot catamaran Rudee Flipper, a heated cabin as well as outdoor seating on both the upper and lower decks. Guests can sip a hot beverage as they cruise along with knowledgeable Virginia Aquarium educators and scan the horizon looking for birds, harbor seals, harbor porpoises, and whales.
December 27 marks the beginning of Winter Wildlife Boat Trips which run through March 16. Trips typically run on Thursdays and Fridays at 2 p.m., and on Saturdays and Sundays at 9 a.m., 12 noon, and 3 p.m. Trips also run on holiday Mondays. Visit www.virginiaaquarium.com and its calendar of events for a complete listing of the schedule. Trips are subject to boating conditions and the schedule may change.
Reservations are recommended for this two-hour trip and they can be made by calling 757 385-0300. Reservations are not available the day of a trip. However, boarding passes can be purchased directly at the dock until trip departure time, if space allows. Tickets may be purchased in advance at either Aquarium building or at the dock. The cost per person is $28 for adults and $24 for children ages 4-11. Children age 3 and under are no charge, but still require a boarding pass. Whale sightings are not guaranteed.
Guests should arrive at the dock 30 minutes before the boat’s departure time. Boats depart from Rudee Inlet which is located at 200 Winston Salem Avenue, a block from the oceanfront, just off of Pacific Ave. and north of the Aquarium.
The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center in partnership with TFC Recycling and Goodwill Industries will offer its semi-annual E-cycling event Saturday, January 25, from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Virginia Aquarium East Parking Lot. Acceptable personal electronic recyclable items include:
• Personal computers and laptops
• Telephones, cell phones and PDA’s
• Televisions smaller than 32”
• Circuit boards and components
• Monitors and flat screens
• Fax machines
• Stereo equipment and game systems
• Regular recycling materials such as newspapers, bottles and cans will also be accepted.
New Changing Exhibit Features “X-Ray Vision: Fish Inside and Out”
Opening February 1 is an exhibit from the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, “X-Ray Vision: Fish Inside and Out.” The exhibition features 40 strikingly elegant black-and-white digital prints of several different specimens of fish. Arranged in evolutionary sequence, these x-rays not only give a tour through the long stream of fish evolution but they reveal the natural union of science and art. The x-rays have allowed Smithsonian and other scientists to study the skeleton of a fish without altering the sampling making it easier for scientists to build a comprehensive picture of fish diversity. The exhibit is inspired by the book Icthyo: The Architecture of Fish: X-Rays. The exhibit runs in the Aquarium’s changing exhibit gallery in the Bay & Ocean Pavilion through April 27.
BEHIND THE SCENE EXPERIENCES
Guests can enhance their visit to the Virginia Aquarium by purchasing Behind the Scene Tours with sea turtles and sharks. Visit www.virginiaaquarium.com. for details.
Discovery Days, ages 4 - 6
Programs include age appropriate discussions, activities and crafts. All programs are from 2-3:15 p.m. in the Marsh Pavilion Discovery Room unless otherwise noted. Fee: $7 members, $10 non-members
Pre-registration is strongly recommended: call 385-0278 or email programs@VirginiaAquarium.com
Little One's Science Lab, January 2
Put on your lab aprons and join us for some hands-on science experiments. Learn how to form a hypothesis, conduct an experiment, and record results.
Defend and Protect, January 16
Some animals hide, some stink, and some look scary. Come and explore the many ways animals protect themselves from being a meal.
We Heart Animals, February 6
At the Aquarium we love all animals great and small even the smelly ones. Join us to meet a few of our animal ambassadors and learn why we love animals so much.
Slithery Snakes, February 20
Most people know snakes smell with their tongues, but did you know snakes don't use their teeth to chew. Learn all about these wonderful animals and meet a few of the Aquarium's slithery ambassadors during this class.
Windy Weather, March 6
Come learn how wind is created through hands on experiments and learn how animals use wind to their advantage.
Wake Up! Spring is here!, March 20
Animals are beginning to wake up from hibernation and flowers are starting to bloom. Join us on a nature scavenger-hunt walk and discover all the signs of spring.
Bonus Experiences, free with Aquarium admission
Winter Wildlife Fest January 25-26, 11a.m. - 3 p.m.
Have you ever wondered what animals visit Virginia in the winter, or how current animals adapt to the cold temperatures? Learn the answers and more when you join us in our Marsh Pavilion as we celebrate Winter Wildlife. Events will include crafts, activities, meet the keeper sessions, and a scavenger hunt.
Extreme Experiments February 15-16, 11a.m.-3 p.m.
“Extreme Experiments” is an event where kids and adults get to be a scientist for a day! Aquarium guests can perform fun and mysterious experiments that they can also do at home with a few simple supplies. There will be several experimentation stations and guests can choose to go to as many as they’d like! Events will take place in our Bay and Ocean Pavilion.
Trash Bash March 15-16, 11a.m. - 3 p.m.
Trash Bash focuses on marine debris and its effects on the environment. The event highlights Aquarium programs such as Pop It & Trash It! Sensible Seafood and e-cycling events. Local organizations will provide displays and hands-on activities for guests including stations for recycled craft ideas and environmental games. Members and guests can even test their knowledge about effects of trash in the environment at the Marine Debris Curiosity Cart. Throughout the day, Aquarium educators in the Marsh Pavilion and at the Restless Planet Conservation Station will offer “critter close-ups” and learn why a healthy environment is crucial to their survival.
JUST FOR TODDLERS, free with paid admission
Toddler Tuesdays, 11 a.m.
Bring your preschoolers on Tuesdays for this age-appropriate program that includes stories, songs, and an adventure in the Aquarium. On the third Tuesday of the month, we feature a puppet show. These 30-minute programs are held in the Marsh Pavilion.
Toddler Trek, Thursdays, 11 a.m.
Join us for Toddler Trek Thursdays, an outdoor exploration session for early learners and their parents. Every Thursday, take an easy 30-minute stroll along the Nature Trail to discover a new animal, color, or shape through fun outdoor activities. This program meets in the Marsh Pavilion and takes place inside during inclement weather.
Early Expeditions, Wednesdays, 11 a.m.
Every Wednesday, bring your toddler to the Conservation Station in the Bay and Ocean Pavilion to solve an animal mystery. Hone your problem solving skills and help us figure out the "who, what, when, where and why" of the animal world.
Virginia Aquarium Lands Virginia Green Conference and Award - December 09, 2013
The first Virginia Green Conference & Green Travel Star Awards Celebration was held at the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center December 3-4. Over 75 guests attended and had the opportunity to participate in educational workshops, listen to knowledgeable “green” speakers, visit a Virginia Green Market Expo, attend an awards luncheon and volunteer for a clean-up project. Additionally, the “green event” included recycling and composting with no waste going to a landfill.
Among the 2013 Virginia Green Travel Star Award recipients, the Virginia Aquarium was recognized as the state’s “Green Attraction of the Year.” The Virginia Aquarium was the first attraction in the state to attain Virginia Green certification.
Virginia Green is the state’s campaign to promote green practices in tourism. It is a voluntary, recognition program that is run through a unique partnership between the Virginia Tourism Corporation, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and the Virginia Hospitality & Travel Association. Started in 2007, Virginia Green now has more than 1500 participants, including hotels, restaurants, attractions, conference centers, visitor centers, wineries, parks, campgrounds, and many other supporting organizations and businesses.
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