Monday, December 8, 2008

December 2008


Global Explorer Nominated as Top Bostonian

Every year, The Boston Globe Magazine allows readers to nominate and vote on the Bostonian of the Year. This year, we are thrilled that the Aquarium's vice president of global marine programs, Dr. Gregory Stone, is one of the top seven finalists for the title! Greg's recognition is based on his work helping to create--and then double in size!--the Phoenix Islands Protected Area, the largest marine protected area in the world. Greg has dedicated his life to protecting the oceans, and we encourage all of you to vote for him for the honor of Bostonian of the Year.

See Greg's page on

Vote for Greg.

Watch Paradise Protected, a documentary on the Phoenix Islands Protected Area.

Dr. Greg Stone

Happy Holidays!

Spend a day with your loved ones at the Aquarium during the holidays for an experience you'll never forget. We set our holiday hours to maximize visitors' enjoyment time! The Aquarium is closed on December 25 but will be open until 4 p.m. on December 23, until 3 p.m. on December 24 and from 12 pm. until 6 p.m. on New Years Day. On all other days, hours run from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. on weekdays and from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

We expect the Aquarium to be a very popular place for families this holiday season. We encourage all guests, especially those who want to avoid crowds, to schedule their visits either in the morning (before 11 a.m.) or in the late afternoon (after 3 p.m.). If you do encounter a long line, though, don't worry! We'll have hot cocoa and coffee in a warm tent on our front plaza to keep everybody toasty, and our educators will keep even the most antsy children entertained.

Plan your visit.

Turtles Uncovered: Get Beneath the Shell

Sea TurtleThis winter, the Aquarium is your gateway into the world of turtles! Plan your visit today and come walk the turtle trail featuring six stops around the Aquarium with live turtles. Learn turtle facts and stamp your turtle passport. Visitors can also see live animal presentations and visit the Aquarium Medical Center to learn how the Aquarium rehabilitates sick and wounded turtles.

Learn more about turtles:

Sea Turtle Rescue at the New England Aquarium

Turtle Rescue Blog

Annual Sea Turtle Exams

Sea Turtle Training

Online Game: Saving Sea Turtles

Give the Gift of the Aquarium

With a few days of shopping left, keep the Aquarium in mind for eco-friendly presents, stocking stuffers, and memories that will last a lifetime.

Our Gift Shop is open every day (and available online!), so venture down to Central Wharf for cuddly plush animals, educational games and toys, books and DVDs for all ages, Earth-friendly organic clothing and much more!

Give a friend or family member a gift membership, and your present will bring them joy long after other gifts have been forgotten. A gift membership provides all the benefits of membership for an entire year, including unlimited, express admission, discounts on all Aquarium programs, and invitations to exclusive members-only events.

A gift membership is more than a present--it's a year of family bonding, entertainment and education.

Earth wrapped in Bow

Give a Proud Parent animal sponsorship to the ocean protector in your life, and the contribution will help us feed and care for the animal of your choice. The tax-deductible donation can help us support one of our amazing animals. Or, help protect one of the most critically endangered large whales on Earth through our North Atlantic Right Whale Sponsorship Program. There are fewer than 400 of these magnificent animals alive today, and our Right Whale Research Program is working frantically to help save them. Your sponsorship will directly support the yearly costs of research to protect these species.

First Night Family Art

Celebrate First Night 2009 with the Aquarium for some quality fish, fun and family bonding. The First Night Family Art program combines science and art as the children use their observations of marine mammals to construct elaborate puppets and costumes. With help from our educators, Aquarium First Night participants will construct their creations during the Create-a-Creature workshops on December 28 or 30. Then, the children (and their chaperones) will share the wonder of their aquatic creatures with thousands of viewers as they march with the Aquarium in the First Night Grand Procession.

If you and your family would like to join us for the workshop and procession, please call 617-973-5206. This event is recommended for families with children ages 4-13. Parent supervision and participation is required.

Discover Camp

Children at exhibit tank

Keep your kids entertained, educated and energized next summer by enrolling them in the Aquarium's Harbor Discoveries Camp program. The one- to two-week long camps each focus on different aspects of marine life, and combine hands-on encounters with amazing animals, immersion into marine conservation and behind-the-scenes peeks at life at the Aquarium.

Camps are divided by grade level. The week-long camps meet Monday through Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.--perfect times for commuting parent--and then campers leave on an overnight trip from Thursday morning until Friday afternoon. Two-week-long advanced programs follow the same schedule for the first week, and then campers spend the remainder of camp on a week-long adventure.

Camp registration opens to members January 5, nearly a month before the general public can sign up on February 2. Programs often completely sell out within a few weeks, so act quickly.

Spotlight on Research

Researchers in front of the Cessna

Photo/Jonathan Cunha, New England Aquarium

Right whale researchers have left the cold Bay of Fundy waters for the warm Florida skies! As the whales make their yearly migration to the warmer waters of Florida and Georgia for the calving season, our researchers watch for them from the sky in a Cessna Skymaster twin-engine plane. This is all a part of the Southeast Early Warning Survey. The EWS consists of three survey teams from Wildlife Trust, Florida Conservation Commission and, of course, the New England Aquarium. They work together each with their area to cover of the southeastern United States to photograph and report the endangered whales and warn ships that the whales are in the area to help reduce the risk of ship strikes.

For more information, to learn about our team and see photos and results as they happen, visit our blog.

Take a Moment

Please consider making a year-end charitable contribution to the New England Aquarium.

The Aquarium relies on our members to contribute more than 30% of our operating budget. These funds support the educational, conservation and research programs that make the New England Aquarium a leader both locally and globally. We need your support now more than ever. Gifts of any size make a difference!

Please make a year-end donation online today!

Now Playing at the

Simons IMAX Theatre

Simons IMAX Theatre

Blue Lifestyle Tips

When the cost of utilities has you seeing red, use these tips to save some green by living blue.

Consider space heaters.

Space heaters require a considerable amount of electricity, but they can be less expensive than heating the entire home. Use a space heater to warm specific rooms instead of overheating the entire house, a smart choice if you use primarily one room during the day or if members of your household are sensitive to cold.

Embrace the body electric.

A roomful of people can actually generate several degrees of heat. Turn down the thermostat right as guests arrive, and they'll more than make up the difference. When it's too cold to play outside, keep the kids occupied in one room, and lower the heat in the rest of the house.

Green Home Heating

Dive Deeper

Sign your kids up for these fun and interactive education programs.

Family Explorers

Animals of the Open Ocean

Toddler Explorers (age 2):

9:30 a.m.: Jan. 6, 13, 20, 27

11 a.m.: January 9, 16, 23, 30

Preschool Explorers (ages 3-4):

11 a.m.: Jan. 6, 13, 20, 27

9:30 a.m.: Jan. 9, 16, 23, 30

Ocean Detectives

January 24, 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Junior Detectives (ages 5-7): Penguins

Advanced Detectives (ages 8-12): Deep Sea Secrets

Marine World in the News