August 2019
Note from the Executive Director

Summer weather is finally here, and the Estuarium has events planned left and right!

The first event in our Summer Shark Spree was an absolute success. Long time volunteer, board member, and friend of the Estuarium, Sandy Zeiner led an amazing talk and dissection that had folks on the edge of their seats. Thanks to Sandy for making our first event so memorable! We can’t wait until our next Summer Shark Spree event with Dr. Dayv Lowry on August 24th. 

Don't forget that our summer fundraiser is underway, and for every $1 that is donated, the Dawkins Charitable Trust will donate $2. This summer, all funds raised will support our Estuarium exhibits. Visit www.SSEAcenter.org/donate today and help us educate our visitors about how to protect the Puget Sound.

Our Education Team has had a blast educating students from Squaxin Island in the summer sun! Students use their eyes, ears, and hands to interact with animals during their soundscape hike and touch tank activity. To schedule a summer field trip of your own, contact our Education Coordinator at Aeriel@SSEAcenter.org.

August is the last month of the Estuarium's popular Meet the Beach program. If you haven't yet had a chance, now is the time to make your way down to your favorite local beaches and identify amazing intertidal life. Click HERE to check out our August Meet the Beach schedule.

Our next Pier Peer events aren't far away. Come find us down on the docks at Boston Harbor Marina on August 7th and August 24th to discover what lurks beneath the pier. Register today to save your spot before they run out!

Happy August from all of us here at the Estuarium!
Ways to Make a Difference

Have you seen our Ways to Make a Difference exhibit? We highlight individual and household tips that contribute to a clean future for the Sound. Recently, we added a survey to encourage individuals to take specific actions to protect our estuaries.
Your donations help us maintain Ways to Make a Difference and all the other exhibits at our facility. A single membership donation of $35 allows us to reach 20 people per month. That’s 20 more neighbors each month who are using the same strategies to help maintain the diversity and beauty of Puget Sound.
Please donate today to support our exhibits, or take the online survey to protect the Puget Sound!

All donations this summer will be matched $2 dollars for every $1 donated, up to $1,500!
Give a gift online at www.SSEAcenter.org/donate  
or send your contribution to PO Box 2182, Olympia, WA 98507.
Annual Benefit Cruise

Our annual benefit cruise is back again for its 11th year! Enjoy a day aboard My Girl celebrating our unique and beautiful estuary ecosystem. Expand your knowledge of Puget Sound’s majestic marine mammals with guest speaker Casey McLean, Executive Director of SR3 (Sealife Response, Rehabilitation and Research) , and Veterinary Nurse.
Complete with delicious food and a no host bar, you won’t want to miss this cherished annual event. Mix and mingle with old and new friends while sharing your love for the Puget Sound this September.
Ticket Details
Be sure to purchase your tickets before September 8th to receive our Early Bird special discount!

Our Summer Shark Spree is off to a great start! Long time volunteer, board member, and friend of the Estuarium, Sandy Zeiner, hosted her one-of-a-kind shark talk and dissection. She packed the house with excited shark enthusiasts. Here’s a big thanks to Sandy for educating us on the inner workings of a Spiny Dogfish straight from the Puget Sound!

Be sure to catch our next Summer Shark Spree guest speaker if you didn’t get a chance to make it out in July.

Free Admission Day:

  • Saturday, August 24, 1:00 - 2:00 PM: Shark Talk and shark specimens with Dr. Dayv Lowry, Research Scientist of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
K - 12 Education

When school is out, summer camp kids will explore! The Estuarium recently hosted over 60 camp participants from Squaxin Island Summer Recreation for a Meet the Beach field trip. Kids ranging from 5 to 12 years old received interactive experiences learning about estuarine systems at Tolmie State Park.

The campers and their counselors rotated through four stations that investigated watersheds, soundscapes, food weds, and marine biodiversity. At the Enviroscape station, each participant placed pollution on a model to see how it is carried by stormwater runoff. From the demonstration, the kids were able to brainstorm ideas on how to reduce their human impact on the environment. The campers used a different sense instead of their eyes to find animals around them during their soundscape hike. After using their ears to better understand the nature around them, the kids made eco-friendly animal crafts. Candace Penn, from the Squaxin Island Trip Natural Resources Department, brought some unique marine life for participants to hold as part of her touch tank. Lastly, the kids weaved themselves into a food web while learning about what marine animals eat during a predator/prey game.

Campers and educators both enjoyed a sunny day filled with exploring the beach and surrounding ecosystems!

To learn more about field trips, please contact our Education Coordinator, Aeriel Wauhob, at Aeriel@SSEAcenter.org. 
Meet the Beach

Meet the Beach is entering its final month. Come out to the beaches and join our Beach Naturalists to explore and discover the wonders of Puget Sound. Just look for us in the green vests!

Check out our June Meet the Beach schedule:
  • Sunday, August 4, 1:00 - 4:00 PM: Burfoot
  • Sunday, August 4, 1:00 - 4:00 PM: Tolmie
  • Saturday, August 17, 1:00 - 4:00 PM: Frye Cove
  • Saturday, August 17, 1:00 - 4:00 PM: Priest Point
  • Sunday, August 18, 1:00 - 4:00 PM: Woodard Bay
  • Sunday, August 18, 1:00 - 4:00 PM: Priest Point
Pier Peer

Boston Harbor is warming up, and Pier Peer is still going strong! Come help us find nudibranch, shrimp, crabs, fish, seals, otters, and more! Roll your sleeves up and dig in with us some time…

Participants (Age 13 and older) - $10
Children (Age 12 and younger) - FREE

Upcoming Pier Peer Dates:

  • August 7, 8:30 - 10:00 PM: Click HERE to register
  • August 24, 8:30 - 10:00 PM: Click HERE to register

Register online using the links on our Facebook page or website!
Do you have a group (scouts, friends, family reunion, etc.) who you think would enjoy a fun evening discovering the underwater world of Puget Sound? Remember you can always schedule your own private Pier Peer event! Please email  PierPeer@SSEAcenter.org  for more information and to request a group inquiry form.
Volunteer Opportunities

Are you looking for ways to get involved? Here are a few coming up: 
  • August 7, 8:30 - 10:00 PM: Pier Peer, Boston Harbor Marina
  • August 24, 8:30 - 10:00 PM: Pier Peer, Boston Harbor Marina
  • August 15, 9:00 - 10:30 PM: Pier Peer with Evergreen
  • August 15, 6:30 - 7:30 PM: Development Team Meeting, Estuarium
  • August 20, 6:00 - 7:00 PM: Exhibits Team Meeting, Estuarium
  • August 21, 6:30 - 8:00 PM: New Volunteer Orientation
  • August 22, 6:30 - 7:30 PM: Education Team Meeting, Estuarium
  • Estuarium Open Hours: Every weekend at the Estuarium between 11:00 - 4:00 PM
  • Weekly Shifts: Husbandry volunteers at the Estuarium

If you are interested in volunteering during these field trips, please contact our Education Coordinator, Aeriel Wauhob, at Aeriel@SSEAcenter.org.

One of the best ways to get involved is to join an Estuarium Team! We currently have four teams (Education, Events, Exhibits, and Development). To join a team, please visit www.SSEAcenter.org/volunteer/teams/ for more information, fill out a volunteer application, and email Volunteer@SSEAcenter.org. We’d love to have you join us!
Laughs from Larry, the Spiny Lumpsucker

Q: What did the seal with the broken arm say to the shark?
A: Do not consume if seal is broken!

Despite such an intimidating tail, thresher sharks are relatively shy with small mouths and stocky bodies. A small jaw is no hindrance to the thresher shark though, as their uniquely adapted tails aid in catching prey. Using its tail, thresher sharks swat at prey in order to stun them momentarily before gobbling them up. 

Thresher sharks are also avid travelers and can be spotted from New England to Ghana, and beyond! These sharks are pelagic and can be found in coastal and oceanic waters. A few lucky witnesses have seen thresher sharks playfully jumping out of the water, though this is very rare. 

To see a real thresher shark tail come on down to the Estuarium during our Summer Shark Spree on August 24th from 1:00 - 2:00 PM to catch Dr. Dayv Lowry’s captivating shark talk and hear the story behind his cured thresher tail! 

To submit your joke, email Center@SSEAcenter.org.

Photo Credit:
About the Puget Sound Estuarium
Explore * Connect * Inspire

The Puget Sound Estuarium was founded by the South Sound Estuary Association (SSEA) to create opportunities for the public to learn about estuaries, geology, natural and cultural history, marine life, and human impact on the Puget Sound (the biggest estuary in the United States by volume and second largest in the United States by shoreline).

Our mission is to foster learning opportunities that inspire people of all ages to connect with, protect, and enjoy the unique estuary environment of the Puget Sound. 

We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and are supported by donations from caring individuals like you. Please help us continue our work by donating today. You can donate by mailing your check to: South Sound Estuary Association, PO Box 2182, Olympia, WA 98507, or visiting www.SSEAcenter.org/donate .
Our Supporters

We are grateful to have the support of our major donors, sponsors, and partners. Support these local businesses & partners. They support the Puget Sound Estuarium! 

  • Nancy LaPointe Navigate Financial 
  • Kevin Gordham
  • Cynthia Worth Law Group
  • The Pet Works - Estuarium
  • Laura Lowe and the Mud Bay Blues Band
  • Coffee News - Connecting the Community
  • Boston Harbor Marina - Pier Peer
  • My Girl Yacht - K-12 Education
  • TSS Digital Services - Estuarium

Foundation Support:
  • Dawkins Charitable Trust
  • The Russell Family Foundation
  • The Norcliffe Foundation
  • Pacific Coast Shellfish Growers Association
  • Nisqually Indian Tribe
  • The Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment
  • Rotary Club of Olympia
  • Olympia Yacht Club
  • The Squaxin Tribe