MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT --
Since 1976, the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores has offered Marines and Sailors aboard Cherry Point a wet, wild and inexpensive experience.
The aquarium hosts a wide variety of attractions and events to entertain patrons of all ages. Some main attractions include an all-white turtle named Nimbus, a 306,000-gallon living shipwreck exhibit populated by sand tiger sharks, sea turtles and a sunken World War II German submarine.
“Our visit today has been really nice,” said Sgt. Shawn Neal, during a visit with his family March 4. “This is a really cool place, it’s not expensive and it has let my kids run around seeing and learning new and exciting things about fish, sharks, eels, frogs and tons of other animals.”
Neal, an aircraft mechanic with Marine Attack
Training Squadron 203, said he has lived in the area for almost eight years but never got around to visiting the aquarium. But as soon as his in-laws were in town, the aquarium was a welcome experience to share with his family and bring them closer together.
Walking through the aquarium, it is hard not to stop and listen to the staff and volunteers teach about the inhabitants and the behind-the-scenes work that goes into keeping the aquarium running.
The keepers clean the tanks, feed the animals and care for the sea life within the aquarium. They also are a part of the entertainment. On some occasions, divers swim in the living shipwreck habitat to interact with the sea life and talk to patrons via an underwater microphone.
The aquarium allows certified scuba divers to volunteer to help with the living shipwreck shows and help care for the animals.
For more information about events and attractions at the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores or to buy tickets online, visit www.ncaquariums.com.