January 2014

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
Wishing you all a happy, productive New Year!

Danielle Brown
Monterey Bay Sanctuary Foundation


Underwater Parks Day Celebrations


Take this upcoming Saturday to appreciate and celebrate California's marine and coastal treasures on Underwater Parks Day! The sixth annual Underwater Parks Day will take place on Saturday, January 18, 2014. 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
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Natural Bridges will feature an exhibit and poster on California's network of underwater parks which highlights our leadership in ocean protection, the science of marine protected areas and ways in which people can get out and enjoy these special protected places. A guided tidepool walk will take place at 2:30 p.m. departing from the Visitor Center. The program will last about 1.5 hours, non-slip shoes are recommended and tidepool walks are cancelled in inclement weather for safety reasons. There will also be a children's arts and crafts table with coloring sheets, sea otter puppets and other crafts at the Visitor Center. 
Park Admission: $10 per vehicle, limited free street parking available


Point Lobos State Natural Reserve: 62 California 1, Carmel, CA
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
SCUBA divers will set up an exhibit for visitors to touch, feel and learn about some of the spectacular underwater wildlife in Whalers Cove. The Marine Mammal Center, PISCO, Reef Check, BAUE and the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Foundation will be present and have displays for visitors.  
Park Admission: $10 per vehicle
For more information, click here.


Friends of the Elephant Seal: 250 San Simeon Ave, Piedras Blancas 
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Piedras Blancas supports one of California's largest elephant seal rookeries and provides amazing opportunities to view these large animals. At the elephant seal rookery in Piedras Blancas along Highway 1, Friends of the Elephant Seal will host an information table, various interactive activities for kids, and underwater cookies! In addition, a one-mile interpretive walk titled "Underwater Parks - California's Investment in the Future", and led by Bette Bardeen, will be given at 1:00 p.m., departing from the paved parking area 1/10 mile north of the main elephant seal rookery parking area along Highway 1.
Admission: Free


Morro Bay Museum of Natural History: 20 State Park Rd, Morro Bay, CA
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
In collaboration with the Central Coast State Parks Association, the Morro Bay Museum will be hosting an Underwater Parks Day photography exhibit featuring the work of many talented local artists. Winning photographs will be on display starting January 15th and will remain for several months. In addition, a touch tank exhibit, known as Tide pool Treasures, will be on display and allow visitors to view and gently touch marine invertebrates that thrive in underwater parks along California's central coast. You will also have an opportunity to talk to marine naturalists about the interesting life histories of these amazing animals that live along our coastline.
Museum Admission: $3 Adults, Kids 16 and under Free.


Point Buchon Trail: located at the southernmost end of Pecho Valley Road - Monta´┐Ża de Oro State Park - P
ark in Coon Creek Parking Lot  
Time: 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
A "Junior Scientist" scavenger hunt will be distributed guiding children and families on a short walk along the Point Buchon Trail. Discover the benefits of the Point Buchon underwater parks by searching for marine mammals and birds, completing the scavenger hunt notebook.  Once completed, you can pick up a prize at the Point Buchon trail attendant station! In addition, a touch tank exhibit, known as Tide pool Treasures, will be on display at the gate keeper station for the Point Buchon Trail. Visitors will be able to view and gently touch marine invertebrates that thrive in underwater parks along California's central coast and talk to marine naturalists about the interesting life histories of these amazing animals that live along our coastline.  


Join Save our Shores for their monthly beach clean-up at Seacliff State Beach from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. This is a fun, free, and easy way to give back to your community. Beach clean-ups help to keep pollution from entering the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary and local Underwater Parks. Join in and spend a morning at the beach, while helping to conserve our coastal beaches and ocean!


Event Details in Southern California:


Ty Warner Sea Center211 Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara, CA
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Observe feeding of local marine critters and learn how marine protected areas are providing safe habitats for animals to thrive. Interactive activities for people of all ages including feeding demonstrations at 12:20, 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. Participants will also receive a tote bag and colorful marine life poster while supplies last. 
Sea Center Admission: $8 for Adults, Kids Free
For more information, click here


Time: 12:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. 

Heal the Bay's Santa Monica Pier Aquarium kicks off the New Year with a grand opening January 18th of the remodeled Dorothy Green Room. The Aquarium's New Dorothy Green Room brings a holistic approach to water and a fresh focus on the watersheds of the Santa Monica Bay while celebrating Heal the Bay's founder - and founding - through interactive displays and two new exhibits of live animals. Free posters featuring California's Marine Protected Areas will be distributed to all those who attend on a first come, first serve basis.
Aquarium Admission: Free throughout the grand opening afternoon


Time: 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Speakers, presentations, interactive activities and handouts will be available so visitors can learn more about California's new MPAs. The interactive activities will include demonstrations using fish pillows and abalone pillows, and free MPA tote bags to color (while supplies last). 
Aquarium Admission: Suggested donation $5 for Adults, $1 for Kids 
For more information, click here.


Time: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Guests will be able to learn about the commercial and recreational activities permitted in Southern California's network of MPAs. MPA stories will be told using film, lectures, and interactive exhibits. The event will also feature educational booths and activities in the Great Hall.  
Aquarium Admission: $28.95 Adult, $14.95 Kids (3-11), Kids under 3 Free.

For more information, click here.


Time: 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The Ocean Institute will join in the celebration of Underwater Parks Day to educate the public about the statewide network of MPAs and explain the need for these "underwater parks." Explore the species, habitats and resources that make our ocean exceptional. 
Admission: $6.50 Adults, $4.50 Kids (3-12), Kids under 2 Free.
For more information, click here.


Time: 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Meet animals that live in the La Jolla Ecological Reserve, learn about the importance of California's underwater treasures, and explore the best ways to enjoy these Underwater Parks! 
Admission: $17 Adult, $14 Teen (13-17), $12.50 Kids (3-12), Kids under 2 Free.
For more information, click here.


Time: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
More than 200 species of sea creatures call SEA LIFE Aquarium home.  Learn about these wondrous animals and how Southern California's new 
underwater parks will help protect them for the future. Fun games and 
activities for families and kids will teach about the ocean and the 
importance of conservation. 
Aquarium Admission: $20 Adults, Kids under 2 Free. 


Additional Opportunities to Engage in MPAs:

Enter the 3rd annual Laguna Bluebelt Photo Contest. Entries will be accepted from January 1st - January 18th. Submit your favorite photograph taken in one of Laguna Beach's marine protected areas and enter to win one of several great prizes, including a helicopter ride, dive boat trip, dinners, whale watching trip, and kayak tour. 

Students (K-12) use your artistic talent to highlight one of California's special underwater parks! Enter the California Coastal Commission's annual Coastal Art and Poetry Contest and be eligible to win prizes including gift certificates to an art supply store or book store and tickets to the Aquarium of the Pacific. 
Share the news of Underwater Parks Day on social media, click below to download these fun graphics!
MBSF new logo 
Monterey Bay Sanctuary Foundation 
99 Pacific Street, Building 455 
Monterey, CA 93940
(831) 647 - 4209