Sanctuary Reef, a unique traveling exhibit that gives a shrimp’s eye view of an oversized coral reef, is now on display at Keys History & Discovery Center in Islamorada, through Feb. 28, 2016. This interactive display developed by Mote Marine Laboratory brings the ocean’s coral reefs and vital scientific research to life through hands-on educational panels and videos.
“The exhibit will allow our visitors to experience coral reefs as never before and gain valuable knowledge from world-class marine science educators at Mote,” said Jill Miranda Baker, executive director of the Discovery Center. “Sanctuary Reef brings an important ecosystem to life and provides an excellent introduction to marine science concepts.”
The exhibit reveals why coral reefs are important ecologically and economically, what scientists are learning about them, what risks reefs face, how we can help protect them and much more. The exhibit features huge models of corals, colorful fish, eels and interactive panels with reef information centered around a glowing TV screen. Sanctuary Reef, created through a prestigious Department of Education grant, is one of three traveling exhibits developed by Mote’s SeaTrek program, which offers exhibits to museums, libraries and other venues in the U.S. and beyond.
“Our mission is to share crucial knowledge of the oceans’ vital ecosystems with people of all ages, no matter where they live,” said Aly Busse, Director of Education at Mote. “By offering traveling exhibits and other education programs that are innovative, entertaining and truly interactive, we hope to encourage lifelong learning, ocean stewardship and conservation throughout the world.”
The Discovery Center is in Islamorada, MM 82, located on the property of the Islander Resort, a Guy Harvey Outpost. The Center is open Thursdays through Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. General admission is $12. Admission for seniors is $10 and children 13-under are free. The Discovery Center is operated by the Florida Keys History and Discovery Foundation, a not-for-profit organization formed to develop and operate the Keys History & Discovery Center. For more information, call 305-922-2237 or visit our website at www.keysdiscovery.com.