May 25 2007

Catch a Wave—Surfrider Foundation partners with the Aquarium of The Pacific to educate the public on

by Surfrider Foundation

May 25, 2007— The Aquarium of The Pacific in Long Beach, Calif. opened its Catch a Wave Exhibit today. The exhibit will run until March 31, 2008 and will enable the public to experience the history of surfing, the science of waves, surf culture, and visit animals that live in the surf zone all while simultaneously learning how to help the ocean.

Surfrider Foundation’s Marketing and Communications Director, Matt McClain, was on hand at the special media sneak preview on May 24th to give a speech on ocean health and help usher in this fantastic new exhibit.

Founded in June 1998, the Aquarium of the Pacific is Southern California’s largest aquarium and the fifth largest in the nation. With nearly 1.4 million annual visitors, including 200,000 school children, the Aquarium of the Pacific is also the third largest cultural attraction in the Los Angeles area.

In addition to its public programs and exhibits, the Aquarium is involved in numerous conservation efforts, including sustainable seafood, watershed education, ocean literacy, and more. Its team of scientific divers collects critical data used by a variety of ocean research institutes and reporting agencies. And through its Aquatic Forums, the Aquarium brings together scientists, educators, community leaders, and policy makers to develop solutions to complex environmental issues.

The Catch a Wave exhibit has numerous ways to learn more about surfing and our oceans’ health.

The Waves Gallery gives visitors a chance to learn all about waves, watch them in action, and discover the science behind them.

Faces of a Tsunami explores the science behind tsunamis and their impacts on people. The exhibit showcases striking personal accounts of the 1960 Valdivia tsunami in Chile and will explore the causes and effects of tsunamis.

Southern California Waves explores what makes Southern California beaches and waves so great. Visitors can learn where our waves come from, how they form, and the science behind how they bring good surf to our shores.

Great Hall Surf Experience provides a dramatic and unique movie-going experience by projecting a film that showcases surfers around the world across eight screens. There are even world-class surfers featured that have no need for a board. Sea lions, dolphins and sea turtles also enjoy catching waves and this film has great footage of them surfing.

The Catch a Wave Film will open in the new Honda Theater on June 15th and will explore where our best summer surfing waves come from, how they are created, how far they travel, what makes them good surfing waves, and how their energy is dissipated?

Surf Zone Animals
While riding waves may be fun for people, actually living in the surf zone is a tough job. Visitors can visit theses creatures and learn how animals have adapted unique ways to survive in the crashing waves.

Surf Culture Exhibits
Through a six-panel graphic display in the Great Hall, visitors can learn about the history of surfing from around the world. A visual timeline will take guests from the birth of surfing to the phenomenon it is today.

The Northern Gallery has an exhibit that showcases the evolution of surfboards with actual historic and modern boards, allowing visitors to see everything from early long boards to today’s high-tech designs.

In the Great Hall and in the Tropical Gallery, guests can learn about surfing in the Pacific Islands and discover its connections to hula and early Hawaiian culture.

Shark “Surf” Lagoon
The Shark Lagoon has been decked out as a surf shack, complete with sand, boards and a daily surf report. The Aquarium’s Bamboo Bistro will also feature surf burgers and shaved ice.

Marine Life Theater Program
The Marine Life Theater explores the different kinds of waves that exist in our world. Through exploratory learning, the science of waves is demonstrated with different activities and presentations for all ages.

Surfing Hula
Daily hula demonstrations give guests the chance to experience the Aloha spirit from the birthplace of modern surfing, Hawaii. Dancers will perform both traditional and modern dances and visitors will even have the chance to learn a little hula themselves.

Surf Music
Every Saturday and Sunday from Memorial Day through Labor Day, the Aquarium will feature live surf music from noon to 4:00 p.m. in front of the Aquarium.

Sandcastle Fun
From Memorial Day to Labor Day, visitors can hit the sand and make their own sandcastle in front of the Aquarium. Guests can also compete in the weekend sand castle contests.

For more information on the special events taking place in conjunction with the Catch a Wave exhibit, including surf culture films, guest speakers, cool surf bands and more Click Here