Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Sea of Celebrations!

It’s time to celebrate our love for the ocean on World Oceans Day! June 8th marks the 14th anniversary of World Oceans Day, a day that has been officially recognized by the UN for three years. This years’ theme is “Oceans of Life” which focuses around the ocean’s great diversity of life and how each one of us can help in its conservation. The theme touches on the notion that we all have a favorite ocean animal, and ways to connect that passion with helping conserve the world’s ocean. The Ocean Project is asking each person to choose their favorite animal and motivate others to take conservation action to help your chosen marine animal.

This year is a special year for World Oceans Day as it marks the 50th anniversary of Dr. Seuss’ book One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish. The Seuss Foundation is working alongside The Ocean Project to promote the day and bring the colorful characters of the book to life! 2010 also marks the International Year of Biodiversity, which is an attempt to emphasize the value of biodiversity in all of our lives.

World Oceans Day is an opportunity to celebrate our world’s oceans and the personal connection each one of us shares with the sea. The Ocean Project and the World Ocean Network coordinated together to make this year’s celebration special.

World Oceans Day encourages people to change their perspective and think about what the oceans mean to them, learn about creatures and habitats that rest in the seas, and become caretakers of the ocean by making small modifications to their daily lives. The day also gives people the opportunity to celebrate the ocean!

Why should we celebrate World Oceans Day? Oceans make up 70% of the planet’s surface. The world’s ocean also generates most of the oxygen we breathe, cleans the water we drink, and helps feed us. It also helps regulate the climate. The calming sea also provides inspiration for people all over the world.

One way to celebrate World Oceans Day is by attending the Aquarium’s Surf It, Save It: Aquarium Surf Festival on June 5th and 6th. The weekend is designed to encourage environmental stewardship through surfing, as well as educate visitors about the sport’s culture and lifestyle. Festival activities include surf films; an exhibit on the history of surfing, including vintage boards; hula and ukulele demonstrations and rehabilitated shore birds and turtles. Ocean Cure’s Surfer’s Healing mini-camp for autistic children, a search-and-air rescue demonstration featuring a H60 helicopter and C-130, and paddle board demonstrations will be staged on the nearby beach. There will also be several coastal clean ups. Shaun Tomson, former world-champion surfer from South Africa, will host a private showing of his mid-70s surfing feature film, “Bustin’ Down The Door,” and sign copies of his book, “Surfer’s Code - 12 Simple Lessons for Riding Through Life,” available in the Aquarium Gift Shop. Skipper Funderburg, local author of “Surfing on the Cape Fear Coast” will sign copies of his book, and board shapers Sean O’Donnell and Will Allison will discuss the evolution of surfboard design. Big wave surfer Garrett McNamara will provide story time with his children’s book “Ride the Giant Waves.”Surf and ocean art by photographers Scott Marshall, Logan Mock-Bunting and DJ Struntz will be on exhibit, and large, outdoor installations by Sean Ruttkay will be featured in the Aquarium garden.

There are countless other ways to take part in World Oceans Day. To discover more activities and ideas for your World Oceans Day visit

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