Underwater Parks Day - Southern California

Saturday, January 19th 2013 is California's fifth annual Underwater Parks Day -- the perfect day for celebrating our other state parks. If you live in Southern California, there are lots of opportunities to get in or on the water, participate in a photography contest with great prizes, or learn about local sea life through aquarium exhibits and lectures.  Click here return to the main Underwater Parks Day page and access event listings in other regions.

Southern California Events:

South coast aquaria started Underwater Parks Day in 2009, and continue to celebrate the event with interactive exhibits, games, lectures and movies. They will also have information for residents that want to get involved in marine protected area monitoring  programs or other volunteer work. See below for a complete list of celebrations.

Event Details:

SEA Days - Birch Aquarium at Scripps: 2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla, CA
Saturday, January 19th--11:00 am to 3:00 pm
Meet animals that live in the La Jolla Ecological Reserve, find out the best ways to enjoy our underwater parks and discover the importance of these underwater treasures. Free with admission.

Legoland/SEA LIFE Aquarium: 1 Legoland Drive, Carlsbad, CA
Saturday, January 19th--10:00 am to 3:00 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. Free with admission.

Ocean Institute:
24200 Dana Point Harbor Drive, Dana Point, CA
Saturday, January 19th--10:00 am to 3:00 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. Free with admission.

Laguna Bluebelt Coalition Photo Contest
January 1st – January 18th
Submit your favorite photograph taken in one of Laguna Beach’s marine
protected areas between January 1st and 18th and enter to win one of
several great prizes, including a helicopter ride, whale watching trip,
and kayak tour.  Full info here.

Aquarium of the Pacific: 100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach, CA
Saturday, January 19th--9:00 am to 6:00 pm
Guests will be able to learn about the commercial and recreational activities permitted in Southern California’s network of MPAs. MPA stories will be told using film, lectures, and interactive exhibits. The event will also feature educational booths and activities in the Great Hall.  Free with admission.

Cabrillo Aquarium: 3720 Stephen M. White Drive, San Pedro, CA
Saturday, January 19th--11:00 am to 3:00 pm
Speakers, presentations, interactive activities and handouts will be available so visitors can learn more about California’s new MPAs. The interactive activities will include demonstrations using fish pillows and abalone pillows, free MPA tote bags to color, free colorful MPA posters (in English and Spanish) for children, maps of MPA locations and MPA booklets produced by the CA Department of of Fish and Wildlife.  Free with admission.

Santa Monica Pier Aquarium:
1600 Ocean Front Walk, Santa Monica, CA
Saturday, January 19th--12:30 pm to 3:00 pm
Visitors will receive a free canvas tote bag to decorate, creating their own underwater parks scene at the Aquarium’s craft station. An interactive exhibit in the Aquarium’s lab, short films and additional craft activities are designed for all to learn how to improve the ocean’s health. Free with admission. 

Ty Warner Sea Center: 211 Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara, CA
Saturday, January 19th  12:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Observe feeding of local marine critters and learn how marine protected areas are providing safe habitats for animals to thrive. Celebrate these unique aquatic environments through hands-on science investigations, a vibrant student art display, and take home a free tote bag (limited supply, please come early) Free admission provided for elementary students attending school in Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties.