Atlanta (June 03, 2015) Georgia Aquarium is offering a weekend of special events to educate guests on ocean conservation in celebration of World Oceans Day, June 5-6. Visitors can participate in educational activities, interact with animal and nature conservationists and attend an Oceans Day-themed Science on Tap lecture featuring panelists like Jeff Corwin, the Emmy-Award winning host of Ocean Mysteries at Georgia Aquarium.

All events will focus on the issue of marine debris and its impact on our oceans. Guest will walk away from these events better educated on this growing problem and armed with information on how they can help protect the world’s oceans.

World Oceans Day, which officially falls on June 8, is a global celebration supporting action that helps protect and conserve the world’s oceans. Georgia Aquarium’s programming around this annual celebration is part of their ongoing commitment to create ambassadors for the world’s oceans through informative and entertaining education.

Georgia Aquarium will offer events to educate the whole family as well as programming to help guests dive deeper into issues around marine debris and conservation.

Family-Focused Events

Saturday, June 6

All Day - Join Deepo, an orange garibaldi fish and Georgia Aquarium’s mascot, for a special “Deepo’s Chat.” This special World Ocean’s Day-themed event will take place throughout the day at Deepo’s Hideaway in Ocean Voyager, giving guests an under-the-sea account of the challenges the ocean’s residents encounter with marine debris and answer guests’ questions about protecting our world’s oceans.

11 a.m. - Attend the premiere of “Trash Talk,” a high-energy, animated short film that explores what we can do to help keep trash out of the ocean.

11-2 p.m. - Participate in an interactive fishing game that teaches kids about sustainable fishing and the importance of removing trash from the ocean.

11-2 p.m. - Become a puppet maker at the conservation-themed Georgia Aquarium manta ray puppet workshop. Guests will learn fun facts about this incredible species from the only aquarium in the U.S. with manta rays, while creating their very own manta ray puppets to take home.

2 p.m. - Attend the debut performance of Georgia Aquarium’s live, original production "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.”

A Deeper Dive into Marine Debris

Friday, June 5

6-8 p.m. - Oceans Day-Themed Aqua Talk: Science on Tap: Marine Debris, Our Oceans, Our Health

Join a panel of conservation and marine debris experts to learn about the health of our oceans and how it all affects human health. Panelists include Jeff Corwin, host of “Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin from Georgia Aquarium” airing weekly on ABC-TV stations; Dr. Alistair Dove, director of research and conservation at Georgia Aquarium; and artist Dena Light, co-creator ofThe Current Collection, a dramatic art sculpture made of reclaimed marine debris on display in Atlanta’s Centennial Olympic Park now through June 22. Tickets for this event can be purchased on Georgia Aquarium’s website.

Saturday, June 6

11-2 p.m. - Learn about Georgia Aquarium’s Seafood Savvy Program which empowers people and businesses to make informed choices for a healthy ocean and ensure abundant seafood supplies for the future.

Saturday, June 6 - Sunday, June 7

Fishackathon

Georgia Aquarium is proud to be a host site this year for the second annual Fishackthon led by the U.S. Department of State, June 6-7. This event challenges coders, developers and designers to collectively create applications, systems and tools to solve sustainable fishery issues. While this event will be going on behind-the-scenes and is not open to the public, it is an important component of Georgia Aquarium’s commitment to resolving this global issue. The Aquarium is part of similar efforts taking place at a number of participating zoological facilities throughout the weekend. Coders interested in participating can register at fishackathonatlanta.splashthat.com.

More Information about Protecting Ocean Animals by Reducing Marine Debris

This year, World Oceans Day is dedicated to the clean-up and prevention of marine debris. Marine debris is trash that enters the ocean through wind patterns or city drainage systems. Much of the world’s ocean debris comes from fishing gear including nets, line and hooks, but also comes from items people use every day, such as plastic grocery bags, drink bottles and six-pack rings. When trash reaches the ocean it becomes caught in the ocean currents and eventually collects into huge garbage islands called gyres. These gyres are so massive that one in particular, The North Pacific Gyre, is estimated to be twice the size of the United States.

“Unfortunately, each year thousands of marine animals and seabirds die from eating or becoming entangled in marine debris,” says Dr. Alistair Dove, director of research and conservation at Georgia Aquarium, “but there are things people can do right now to protect the ocean and make it safer for marine life.”

5 Tips from Georgia Aquarium for Reducing Marine Debris

1. Choose reusable items when possible

2. Recycle plastics

3. Cut the loops of rubber bands and six-pack rings before disposing

4. Volunteer for recycling or clean-up activities

5. Share your knowledge with others and lead by example

For more information about Georgia Aquarium and World Oceans Day, visit www.georgiaaquarium.org.

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ABOUT GEORGIA AQUARIUM

Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, Georgia, is one of the world’s most dynamic aquariums—containing more than 10 million gallons of water and the largest collection of aquatic animals. The mission of Georgia Aquarium is to be a premier scientific institution delivering an awe-inspiring entertainment experience which supports animal research and conservation; inspires learning; and instills a passion for the aquatic world. Its exhibits and programs are of the highest standards, offering engaging guest encounters that promote the conservation of marine biodiversity throughout the world. Georgia Aquarium is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums. For additional information, visit www.georgiaaquarium.org