Islamorada, FL – 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.
About Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium
Founded in 1955, Mote Marine Laboratory is an independent, nonprofit 501(c)3 research organization based in Sarasota, Fla., with field stations in eastern Sarasota County, Charlotte Harbor and the Florida Keys. Donations to Mote are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.
Mote is dedicated to today’s research for tomorrow’s oceans with an emphasis on world-class research relevant to conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity, healthy habitats and natural resources. Research programs include studies of human cancer using marine models, the effects of man-made and natural toxins on humans and on the environment, the health of wild fisheries, developing sustainable and successful fish restocking techniques and food production technologies and the development of ocean technology to help us better understand the health of the environment. Mote research programs also focus on understanding the population dynamics of manatees, dolphins, sea turtles, sharks and coral reefs and on conservation and restoration efforts related to these species and ecosystems. Mote’s vision includes positively impacting public policy through science-based outreach and education. Showcasing this research is Mote Aquarium, open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 365 days a year. Learn more at www.mote.org.