NEWS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 15, 2011
MONTEREY BAY AQUARIUM’S ‘OTTER DAYS’ SEPTEMBER 24 AND 25
California’s iconic southern sea otters are among the most charismatic creatures in the wild – and they need our help. On September 24 and 25, the Monterey Bay Aquarium celebrates these engaging animals during “Otter Days,” a weekend full of special events and activities that promises to be fun and educational for the whole family.
Visitors to “Otter Days” can connect with the aquarium’s resident sea otters, play an animal training game, participate in an otter-themed game show, or volunteer to be “transformed” into a sea otter and learn everything an otter needs to survive in the ocean. With sustainable seafood cooking demonstrations, a family craft room and face painting, the weekend’s activities appeal to otter fans of all ages.
A special behind-the-scenes tour that’s all about otters will be available only during “Otter Days” weekend, including an exclusive visit to the aquarium’s Animal Health Lab, hands-on experience with research and rescue equipment, and an opportunity to see where our staff cares for rescued otters.
In addition to these fun activities, visitors will learn about efforts to save California’s threatened southern sea otter population. California sea otters easily capture human hearts with their cute countenance and energetic, entertaining behavior. But it’s their threatened status in the wild and uncertain future that makes the story of sea otters’ survival even more compelling. According to the 2010 U.S. Geological Survey the 3-year running average for the population was approximately 2,711 animals; a loss of 3.6 percent since the previous census, and less than 20 percent of the historical estimate of 16,000-20,000 animals.
“Otter Days” is an opportunity to get closer to these incredible animals and learn what people can do to help them thrive in the wild.
“Otter Days” programs and activities include:
“Otter Dress-Up”: A family program in which a volunteer from the audience is transformed into an otter - complete with everything an otter needs to survive in the ocean. 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday on the Great Tide Pool Deck.
“You Otter Know”: A lively program in a game-show style format that challenges three contestants from the audience to prove who knows the most about otters. Have fun, win prizes and learn how to protect sea otters in the wild. 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday in the Auditorium.
“Animal Training Game”: Meet an animal behavior expert, learn why the aquarium trains sea otters and participate in a fun training session. Saturday at 12:30 and 2:30 p.m. and Sunday at 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. on the Great Tide Pool Deck.
Family Craft Room: Get creative in our family craft room. Saturday from 1:30 to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday from 12:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the Discovery Lab Classrooms.
Face Painting: Your face is the canvas. 12:00 pm. to 3:00 p.m. in the Ocean’s Edge Wing, near the end of the Skywalk.
Green cuisine: Taste seafood that's good for you and good for the oceans during a cooking demonstration with Washington, D.C., Chef Barton Seaver. 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Saturday only, on the Great Tide Pool Deck. Followed by a book signing of his book For Cod and Country (book available for purchase at the aquarium’s Gift & Bookstore).
“Otter Days” Behind-the-Scenes Tours: This weekend only, take an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour that’s all about otters. Visit our Animal Health Lab, get hands on with rescue and research equipment, and see where we care for rescued otters on these special 50 minute tours. Book advance reservations online at www.montereybayaquarium.org or by calling (866) 963–9645. $10 Members, $12 Public (plus general admission).
“Otter Days” activities (except tours) are included with aquarium admission: $29.95 for adults, $27.95 for seniors (over 65) and students (13-17, college ID), $19.95 for children 3-12.Children under 3 are free. Book advance tickets online at www.montereybayaquarium.org or by calling 866-963-9645. The aquarium is located at 886 Cannery Row in Monterey. Hours for “Otter Days” are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The aquarium’s “Otter Days” celebration kicks off the ninth annual “Sea Otter Awareness Week” which runs September 25 – October 1 and is led by Defenders of Wildlifehttp://www.defenders.org/seaotter/awareness. Visit the aquarium’s web site at www.montereybayaquarium.org for more information about “Otter Days,” the aquarium’s sea otter live web cam, and the Aquarium’s Sea Otter Research and Conservation program.
The mission of the Monterey Bay Aquarium is to inspire conservation of the oceans.
Monterey Bay Aquarium, 886 Cannery Row, Monterey, CA 93940 United States