“Sensational Seals” haul onto the scene at Save The Bay’s Exploration Center and Aquarium this February

“Sensational Seals” haul onto the scene at Save The Bay’s Exploration Center and Aquarium this February

NEWPORT, R.I. – Feb. 5, 2019 – This February, Save The Bay’s Exploration Center and Aquarium is highlighting the “Sensational Seals” of Narragansett Bay. Fun and educational activities and games will focus on one of the region’s most endearing winter visitors: the “puppy-faced” harbor seal. The Exploration Center is open every Friday-Sunday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Columbus Day-Memorial Day. During February school vacation and Newport Winter Festival, February 15-24, the center will increase hours, opening daily from 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and will offer $1 admission discounts to festival bracelet holders.

“Each winter, hundreds of harbor seals visit the waters of Narragansett Bay,” said Save The Bay Exploration Center Outreach Coordinator and Education Specialist, Jess Bornstein. “So, this February, we’ve scheduled a month of activities that both educate visitors about seals and celebrate what makes these marine mammals so interesting!”

Save The Bay’s life-sized, plush seal model, Sealia—who also makes appearances during Save The Bay’s classroom presentations and field trips—will be a regular part of this month’s programming. Skilled aquarium staff work with Sealia to present many of the “sensational” facts about harbor seal anatomy, including the animal’s closable nostrils, lack of eyelids, and six inches of insulating blubber.

Community members can learn even more about seals by joining a Save The Bay Seal Tour and observing them in their natural habitat. Seal Tours depart from Bowen’s Wharf, now-April 28 and additional tours have been scheduled during February school vacation week, February 16-24. Interested passengers can book seats now at www.savebay.org/seals.

Visitors looking to see more Bay creatures in action can purchase tickets to Feeding Frenzy, an event that allows guests to participate in the aquarium creatures’ favorite time of day: feeding time. Feeding Frenzies will take place at 5 p.m. on Thursdays, Feb. 14 and Feb. 21, and Tuesday, Feb. 19. Tickets ($10 general admission; $8 for Save The Bay members) can be purchased at savebay.org/feedingfrenzy.

The Exploration Center and Aquarium is located in the Easton’s Beach Rotunda at 175 Memorial Blvd. in Newport, Rhode Island. The center is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Friday-Sunday, from Labor Day to Memorial Day, as well as during school holidays and vacations.

General admission to the Exploration Center and Aquarium is $8; $7 for seniors and college students with ID; and free for children under 3 and Save The Bay Family members. The aquarium also now offers free general admission to all military and first responders with current ID, as well as a reduced admission of $7 for their guests.

For more information about the Exploration Center and Aquarium, visit savebay.org/aquarium or call 401-324-6020. The Exploration Center and Aquarium is supported, in part, by Corvias Solutions.

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About Save The Bay: Founded in 1970, Save The Bay works to protect and improve Narragansett Bay and its watershed through advocacy, education, and restoration efforts. It envisions a fully swimmable, fishable, healthy Narragansett Bay, accessible to everyone and globally recognized as an environmental treasure.

*Please note:  Be sure to access the Johnson & Wales University Harborside Campus through the main entrance on Harborside Blvd. Your GPS may suggest taking Ernest Street to JWU’s Shipyard Street entrance, but that route requires a key card for entry.  

From Route I-95 North or South, take Exit 18 (Thurbers Avenue). Head downhill on Thurbers Avenue to US Route 1A (Allens Avenue). Turn right onto Allens Ave. Continue southbound on Allens Ave. into Cranston, where Allens Ave. becomes Narragansett Blvd. Turn left onto Harborside Blvd. at the traffic light by the Shell gas station. Follow Harborside Blvd. through the Johnson & Wales Harborside Campus. At the end of Harborside Blvd., turn right onto Save The Bay Drive. Save The Bay Drive becomes a circular, one-way roadway as you approach the Bay Center. Parking is available in four guest lots after you pass the main building. Enter the building through the main entrance.

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