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Seven Days, Santa Monica, Pier, Ocean

Celebrate California Underwater Park Day Saturday At Pier Aquarium

Posted Jan. 15, 2014, 9:00 am

Mirror Staff

California will celebrate the 6th annual Underwater Parks Day this Saturday, Jan. 18 with a series of events along the coast, including one celebration in Santa Monica.

Underwater Parks Day was created by Southern California aquaria in 2009 to introduce California residents and visitors to the state’s other state parks—the marine protected areas that dot the coast, protecting sea life and habitats at special places like Naples Reef, Laguna Beach and South La Jolla.

Like parks on land, marine protected areas offer a range of activities for visitors, from tidepooling to birdwatching and kayaking. Many also allow some fishing, balancing public access with protections for sensitive plants and animals.

Following is a summary of family-friendly educational events happening along the south coast. Highlights include feeding demonstrations, live animal displays, and a Spin to Swim game.

Santa Monica Pier Aquarium

1600 Ocean Front Walk, Santa Monica, CA 90401

Time 12:30 pm to 5 pm

Free Admission

Heal the Bay’s 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 of the Pacific

100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach, CA 90802

Time: 9 am to 5 pm

Free with admission

Celebrate Underwater Parks Day by learning more about Marine Protected Areas through film, lectures, and interactive exhibits. The event will also feature educational booths and activities in the Great Hall.

Cabrillo Marine Aquarium

3720 Stephen M White Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90731

Time: 10 am to 3 pm

Free with admission

Cabrillo Aquarium celebrates Underwater Parks day with a full day celebration featuring Spin to Swim game, My UW Parks poster, maps, fish & abalone pillows, magnetic map, tote bags, 15” video for Aud. presentation and 3” video for loop presentations

Ocean Institute

24200 Dana Point Harbor Drive, Dana Point, CA

Time: 10 am to 3 pm

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.

Ty Warner Sea Center

211 Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara, CA

Time: 10 am to 3 pm

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.

SeaLife Aquarium

1 Legoland Drive, Carlsbad, CA

Time: 10 am to 5 pm

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.

Birch Aquarium

2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla, CA 92037

Time: 11 am – 3 pm

Free with admission

Celebrate Underwater Parks Day in La Jolla. Meet animals that live in the local La Jolla Ecological Reserve, learn about the importance of our underwater treasures, and explore the best ways to enjoy our Underwater Parks.

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