World Oceans Day is celebrated this week, so last Saturday, June 4, 2011, Jenkinson's Aquarium invited us to join their local celebration. This has become an annual event for us. This year, "1-2-3 and the Seas" and a Dr. Seuss theme in the aquarium's classroom made sure that, if nothing else, Sue would get a fun souvenir.
We first set up our table display with shells, bottles, and other artifacts, all collected from local waters. Display boards were also up about the First Aid Squad and Dive Team. Families stopped by throughout the day with questions about what lives out there and how we have to dress to dive throughout the seasons. "Drysuit Guy" was again a popular photo op. For one family, the exact minute we were explaining how we locate bottles, one of our archive videos of fanning for bottles rolled around - great timing! We could stop talking and they could see for themselves.
The Aquarium scheduled us to conduct three dive demonstrations in the seal tank over the course of the day. We always start with who we are and what it's like to dive in New Jersey. From the front of the seal tank, families then watched us perform some basic skills (mask flood-and-clear, mask removal and replacement, regulator recovery, hovering, etc.). Chet and Joe went first. Joe's first time in here went really well - it helps to have a theater background! Teams of Doug/Sue and Tom/Milton took their turns too, including videotaping from the inside of the tank. (How often does an exhibit take pictures of you?) The divers in the tank also challenged kids outside to a race and a high jump with Flo and Sue as referees.