Monday, April 27, 2009

Aquarium Director Receives Accolades

NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher Director Donna Moffitt has been recognized as a Woman of Achievement from the Greater Federation of Women’s Clubs. Moffitt was one of 21 outstanding women, including several from the Wilmington area, selected for their significant contributions to the state of North Carolina. These women are pioneers in their professional and community efforts serving as role models for future generations.

The Women of Achievement award winners are some of the best and brightest leaders in government, business, and nonprofits in the state. Each honoree boasts a career defined by hard work and a commitment to helping others. The federation has been recognizing women with this award since 2002.

The General Federation of Women’s Clubs of North Carolina, Inc. is a volunteer organization consisting of over 150 clubs and approximately 5,000 members in North Carolina. Club members support the community through volunteer service.

Moffitt was also recently recognized as “Director of the Month” by the Zoo and Aquarium Visitor website. Read Moffitt’s profile at

Zoo and Aquarium Visitor's goal is to help zoos and aquariums build positive relationships with the public, and increase the number and frequency of people's visits.

Moffitt has been director of the Aquarium at Fort Fisher since 2004. Prior to her position at the Aquarium, she was director of the Division of Coastal Management, a division within the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Moffitt earned her bachelor’s degree in environmental design and her master’s degree in landscape architecture from North Carolina State University. She obtained her juris doctor degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Moffitt is licensed to practice law and landscape architecture in North Carolina.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Drink Wine...Help Sea Turtles

The Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project is presenting their Annual Spring Wine Tasting on Sunday, May 17 from 2:00 – 5:00 pm at The Ocean Grill and Tiki Bar in Carolina Beach. Hors d’oeuvres, 50+ wines and a silent auction will be featured.

All proceeds to benefit The Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project ( and The Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Rehab Center at Topsail Island (

Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. Purchase tickets now at The Ocean Grill and Tiki Bar, 1211 S. Lake Park Blvd, Carolina Beach. For more information, call 538-2918 or 352-1765.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Aquarium’s First 5K a Success

Kure Beach, NC – The NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher proved you can host a sustainable 5K race and fun family-oriented event. Over 170 runners turned out for the Aquarium’s Race for the Planet Seahorse Sprint on Sunday, April 19.

Inspired to set an example for the racing community, the Aquarium’s Green Team co-sponsored the Aquarium’s first 5K race along with Pepsi, Land Management Group, TrySports Wilmington and Connie Parker. Lowes Foods donated reusable cloth bags for the race information packets. Organic cotton shirts were given to all race participants. Banana peels and apple cores were collected at the post-race party for compost. Recycling containers for plastic water and sports drink bottles were provided.

The Casserole entertained the runners while waiting for race results. Top male and female overall winners were:

Female overall:
1st Erin Hogston with a time of 19:54
2nd Ann Rasmussen with a time of 19:58
3rd Tere Chipman with a time of 22:24
Male overall:
1st Shawn McKee with a time of 18:06
2nd Carl Hixon with a time of 18:18
3rd Rick Edwards with a time of 18:38

Race times for all runners and winners by age group can be found at:

NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher is located just south of Kure Beach, near the mouth of the Cape Fear River, on U.S. 421. The site is less than a mile from the Fort Fisher ferry terminal. Hours: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm daily (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day). Admission: $8 adults; $7 seniors; $6 ages 6-17. Free admission for: children under 6; registered groups of N.C. school children, and NC Aquarium Society members. General information:

*Photo available online at:

Monday, April 20, 2009

You see the Movie, they Plant a Tree!

In association with Earth Week, Walt Disney Company has promised to plant a tree for every ticket sold to its new movie “Earth” on its opening week. The movie premieres nationwide on April 22, Earth Day.

Disney’s goal for the environmental promotion is to ensure that trees are planted in areas that conservationists have identified as important places for biodiversity. One major area Disney plans to plant the trees is the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. This rain forest is considered the most endangered in the world.

“Earth” is a breathtaking new documentary created by BBC that tells the story of three animal families and their voyages across our planet. The movie follows polar bears in the arctic, elephants in the Kalahari, and a humpback whale, throughout all four seasons. The movie, which follows in the wake of the phenomenal Planet Earth series, is an effort to awaken people’s eyes to the changes happening around the world.

So take this amazing opportunity to enjoy Earth Week, a movie, and help save our environment by going to see “Earth”.
To view a preview of "Earth" visit

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Don’t Feed that Alligator!

Summer is fast approaching and with the warm weather arriving, so are alligators! When the temperature rises, so does the likelihood of seeing an alligator in an area near people, such as lakes and apartment complexes. Although they may be fun to gaze at from a distance, feeding them is a dangerously different story.

Feeding alligators can cause them to relate humans as food. When alligators are fed by humans they lose their fear of them, which can lead them to possibly attack. They become accustomed to people giving them food, causing them to believe that every human has food.

Hap Fatzinger, NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher’s Curator says “Don’t do it, it’s against the law. Problems arise when animals, such as alligators become conditioned or associate humans with food.”

One way to safely view alligators is to visit the NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher. Husbandry and design teams are working to complete the next portion of the newest exhibit featuring our rare albino alligator. They have recently started working on the observation deck where visitors will be able to safely view the pure white beauty up close.
*Photo was taken at NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Green Vocabulary for a Green Life

Being GREEN is becoming a contagious lifestyle! Each day more people make the decision to become environmental friendly, yet this transition can be difficult due to the vocabulary that comes with the lifestyle change. , To help decipher these new terms, here are a few important terms to remember.

Green: A generic term used to describe something that has a moderate effect on the environment.

Biodegradable: A substance that has been scientifically proven to break down entirely and return to nature.

Biodiesel: An alternative fuel made from vegetable oil made from renewable resources, and is nontoxic.

Free range: Labels identify cattle that had continuous and unconfined access to pasture throughout their life cycle, and to swine that had continuous access to pasture for at least 80% of their production cycle.

Fuel efficient: Automobiles that reduce the emissions of carbon dioxide, producing less air pollution and global warming emissions per mile driven.

GMO free: Products that do not contain or were not genetically mutated.

Hybrid: Cars that combine a gasoline engine with an electric motor, producing below average emissions and get above average gas mileage.

Organic: Food and fiber grown or produced in accordance with the National Organic Standards Act. They contain no toxic pesticides and fertilizers, synthetic hormones, antibiotics, sewage sludge, GMOs or radiation.

Recyclable: A product that after its useful life can be remanufactured into another useful material or product, keeping it out of the waste stream.

Recycled: Materials that have been recovered or diverted from the solid waste stream.

Solar Powered: Solar cells covert the sun’s energy into electricity, allowing the energy to be stored in a battery that runs the unit.

Information from the GO GREEN magazine in Wilmington, NC