January 2015

Welcome to the January issue of the Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) Education and Outreach newsletter!

In this issue we:
  • Highlight ways to celebrate Underwater Parks Day throughout California
  • Invite you to participate in the California King Tide Project
  • Announce upcoming events
Wishing you all a happy, productive New Year!

Danielle Brown
California Marine Sanctuary Foundation


Underwater Parks Day Celebrations


This upcoming Saturday, celebrate California's marine and coastal treasures for Underwater Parks Day!  The seventh annual Underwater Parks Day will take place on Saturday January 17th, 2015. Organizations throughout the state participate in this fun event to engage children, residents and visitors in efforts to protect our coast and ocean. Below is a list of participating locations and detailed descriptions of the events.


Event Details in Central California:


Natural Bridges State Beach: 2531 W. Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, CA
Saturday, January 17th
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

To celebrate Underwater Parks Day, Natural Bridges State Beach will have marine science information tables and kids arts and crafts activities. An Underwater Park Ambassador will be there with an MPA mobile cart full of information and fun giveaways.

Save Our Shores Beach Cleanup, Capitola City Beach

San Jose Ave & Esplanade, Capitola, CA

January 17, 2015

Time: 10:00am-12:00pm


Join Save Our Shores as they celebrate Underwater Parks Day! Even though marine protected areas reside under water, these "underwater parks" still need our help on land. Save Our Shores will be cleaning Capitola City Beach from 10am-noon to keep our Sanctuary clean and free of litter.

Check-in will be located in front of the bathrooms, in the grassy area in front of the esplanade.

Individual and small group volunteers are welcome. Save Our Shores provides all necessary supplies, and we encourage volunteers to bring their own reusable buckets, gloves, and water bottles. Cleanup will be held in rain or shine!

For more information, contact cleanup@saveourshores.org.


Point Lobos State Natural Reserve: 62 California 1, Carmel, CA
Saturday, January 24th
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

On January 24th,  Point Lobos will celebrate the importance of marine protected areas with Underwater Parks Day. From 10:00-12:00, divers will set up an exhibit for visitors to touch, feel and learn about some of the spectacular underwater wildlife in the Whalers Cove parking area and an Underwater Park Ambassador will be present with an MPA Mobile Cart. Underwater photography will be displayed at the Whaling Station Museum, and there will be a story-time session for children from 1-2pm at the Whalers Cabin. Afterward the Pacific Grove Museum will have a mock intertidal monitoring activity for kids behind the Whalers Cabin.

Park Admission: $10 per car, $50 small coach or van (10-25 passengers)


Monterey Bay Kayaks: Elkhorn Slough and Monterey Locations

Saturday, January 17th

Time: Shops open 8:30am- 5:00pm


Monterey Bay Kayaks is offering a 10% discount on rentals and tours for anyone who would like to enjoy a day on the water. Give them a call at 1-800-649-5357 to book a tour or just stop in for a rental, they have plenty of boats!


Event Details in Southern California:


Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Sea Center211 Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara, CA

January 17, 2015



Discover the hidden magic of California's Underwater Parks through hands on activities, marine science investigations and special programs. Enjoy Underwater Parks Artwork created by local elementary school students, participate in arts and crafts activities, get elbow deep in touch tanks and kelp holdfast dissections and interact with community conservation groups at the Wharf Discovery Booths. For more information, click here.

Admission:  Adults $8, Teens $7, Kids (2-12) $5, Kids under 2 Free, Museum members Free. **Elementary school students from Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties enjoy free admission on Underwater Parks Day!


January 17, 2015

Time: 11:00am to 3:00pm


Join Cabrillo Marine Aquarium and learn about the newly designated Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in Southern California.  There will be speakers, presentations, interactive activities and handouts for visitors. Learn more about MPAs, how MPAs work, and where MPAs are located in Southern California.

Admission: Free


January 17, 2015

Time: 10:00am-3:00pm


Learn about and explore the species, habitats, and resources that make our ocean exceptional.  Guests can participate in arts and crafts, find out more ways to explore the beauty of our oceans with our SCUBA display, understand the importance of MPAs with games and a Citizen Science tour through our new learning center, and discover the wonderful ways the ocean helps heal our planet.

On-going weekend activities:
The Ocean Institute features a number of hands-on activities, presentations, tidepool walks and educational cruises to educate and inspire people of all ages to participate in their community and learn how to become involved in the Marine Life Protection Act Initiative.

Admission: $6.50 Adult ( 13 yrs+) and $4.50 Kid (3-12yrs); Children under 2 are Free. Members are free. 


January 17, 2015

Time: 9:00am-5:00pm


On January 17, join the Birch Aquarium for Underwater Parks Day activities during their whale themed SEA Days. Along with scheduled whale day activities, there will be emphasis on the migration of gray whales through California's underwater parks to help highlight the importance of these protected areas.  There will be giveaways including posters and an arts and crafts station available for guests to design complementary underwater park tote bags.

Admission: $17 Adult, $14 Teen (13-17), $12.50 Kids (3-12), Kids under 2 Free. 


California King Tide Project

Help Promote "Snap the Shore, See the Future!":

Please help promote the continuing California King Tides Project to capture this year's highest tides, or king tides, on January 19-21, and February 17-19. These extreme tides provide a glimpse of what the state can expect as sea levels rise. Participating is easy: simply grab your camera or smart phone and head to the coast or bay during the high tides, and then post your photos on the California King Tides Project's Facebook and Flickr pages with the time, date, and location of the image. For more information, visit http://california.kingtides.net/


Urban Tides Photo & Video Contest

USC Sea Grant announces the Urban Tides Photo & Video Contest. Grab your camera! Partnering with the California King Tides Project, this is an opportunity for those in Los Angeles and Orange Counties to participate in community based science. Images of king tides and winter storms will help local planners, elected officials and community members envision future flooding from coastal storms, high tides and sea level rise. View the flyer and look for more details here


More Upcoming Events

19th Annual Morro Bay Winter Bird Festival 

1001 Kennedy Way, Morro Bay, CA

January 16th- 19th


Morro Bay is considered a premier birding area. It is located along the Pacific Flyway, is listed as a globally important bird area by the American Bird Conservancy and is designated a state and national estuary. The mission of the event is to promote an understanding and appreciation of birds and other wildlife and an awareness of environmental and conservation issues on the Central Coast.


To that end, more than 125 events are planned. Activities available during the festival

include boat rides, kayaking, nature walks, van trips as far afield as the Carrizo Plain and a variety of workshops. These cover a range of topics including beginner birding classes, gull identification and bat biology. Online registration is closed, but you can still register for the Festival at the door, beginning 6 a.m., Friday, January 16th. For a complete list of activitiesclick here



California Marine Sanctuary Foundation 
99 Pacific Street, Building 455 
Monterey, CA 93940
(831) 647 - 4209