September 2016 Newsletter


Jack Lighton
Dear friends of LMC:

As sea turtle nesting season starts to wind down here in the Palm Beaches, we know it is time to ramp up our social and event season – welcome to September!

We are excited to again report a record-setting sea turtle nesting season on the 9.5-mile stretch of beach LMC monitors, some of the very same beaches our founder Eleanor Fletcher monitored since the late 1960s. Our legacy paves the way for our future, from monitoring our sea turtle nests, cleaning up trash and surveying the health of our dunes and beach ecosystems, the LMC community takes great pride in our efforts to protect one of Florida’s greatest natural resources, our beaches.

It is with great pride that I showcase our upcoming Eighth Annual Go Blue Awards Luncheon, which will be held on Friday, October 28 at PGA National Resort and Spa. Did you know that the Go Blue Awards Luncheon is Florida’s largest ocean conservation awards event? Event co-chairs Lynne and Pete Wells and our Blue Friends Society host this fun annual awards luncheon, which recognizes the conservation efforts of exceptional individuals, volunteers, businesses and youth. We even recognize those who have changed the world with an Eleanor Fletcher Lifetime Achievement Award that’s named in memory of LMC’s founder.

I am happy to report that over half of the 500 seats available for this year’s luncheon have been reserved. Each year this event sells out and we have a long wait list. If you are interested in attending, now is the time to reserve your sponsorship or tickets. This year’s keynote address will be delivered by Mr. Paul Nicklen, one of National Geographic’s most talked about photographers, explorers and conservationists. During the keynote address, keep your eyes peeled for some of Mr. Nicklen’s photographs taken here in Florida – they are awe-inspiring.

The cornerstone of LMC is education; it was Mrs. Fletcher’s goal to impact the community and the next generation so we would have more ambassadors for our sea turtles and our magnificent ocean. We remain deeply committed to education and ask for your help in showcasing some of our programs, which have the ability to impact those here at home and around our planet. From Virtual Field Trips to our Marine Science Academy, our center offers tremendous opportunity for students to become involved in our conservation journey.

On behalf of our entire center, thank you for your support. We look forward to seeing you on campus soon!


With Gratitude,

Jack E. Lighton
President & CEO



The time is now. Our oceans and sea turtles desperately need your help. With your support, year-to-date we have:

  • Removed 1,848 pounds of marine debris through the Responsible Pier Initiative
  • Documented 27,453 sea turtle nests and false crawls on local beaches
  • Responded to 21 sea turtle strandings and treated 31 patients in our hospital
  • Taught 5,806 students from Palm Beach County schools

No amount is too small; please consider making a gift.


Eighth Annual Go Blue Awards

Jack Lighton, Lynn Wells

Pictured: Jack Lighton, Lynne Wells – Courtesy of LILA Photo

This week marks six weeks until our Eighth Annual Go Blue Awards! The luncheon will be held at PGA National Resort & Spa and features entrancing keynote speaker Paul Nicklen. He is a globally-acclaimed, Canadian-born photographer and marine biologist who has been documenting both the beauty and the plight of our planet’s polar regions and our world’s oceans for over 20 years. As a photographer for National Geographic Magazine, he has been able to capture the imagination of a global audience. His personal mission is to use his images, which are often highly emotional, evocative and very beautiful, to ignite a conversation about the future of our planet’s natural wonders and to inspire action.

The Eighth Annual Go Blue Awards Luncheon will recognize businesses, non-profits and individuals who have promoted, implemented or contributed to a “Blue” lifestyle of marine conservation. Awards will be given to those who are leading the way in raising awareness and have made significant contributions to improve and protect our oceans, beaches and wildlife. This year, WPTV News Channel 5 Meteorologist Glenn Glazer will serve as the introductory host.

The esteemed panel of judges that selected this year’s finalists and winners includes; Gary Adkison – U.S. Shark Foundation, Director; Fabien Cousteau – aquanaut, oceanographic explorer, conservationist and documentary filmmaker; Jim Harvey – Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation, Co-Chairman; Greg Marshall – National Geographic Society, Inventor & Scientist; Sally Murray – Daughter of LMC Founder, Eleanor Fletcher;  Susan Murray – Oceana Deputy Vice President U.S. Pacific, Granddaughter of LMC Founder, Eleanor Fletcher; Joel Sartore – Photographer, speaker, author, teacher, and a 20-year contributor to National Geographic magazine; and Jim Toomey – Mission Blue Executive Director, Creator of Sherman’s Lagoon Comic Strip.

The Go Blue Awards program was created to recognize individuals and businesses that directly or indirectly support LMC’s mission to promote conservation of ocean ecosystems with a special focus on threatened and endangered sea turtles. Previous Go Blue Award recipients include Dr. Guy Harvey, Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation; Dr. Sylvia Earle, Mission Blue; Hardy Jones – Executive Director,; Nathaniel Reed, Everglades Foundation; Dr. Edith Widder, Ocean Research & Conservation Association; Florida Power & Light Company; Gary Adkison, U.S. Shark Foundation; International Game Fish Association; and Coral Restoration Foundation.

During our Blue Friends Society September Social on Thursday, October 22 at PGA National Resort & Spa, guests will have the opportunity to meet the 2016 Go Blue Awards Finalists. These amazing group of ocean conservation heroes have been nominated in one of five categories: Eleanor Fletcher Lifetime Achievement, Blue Friend of the Year, Blue Ambassador of the Year, Blue Business of the Year and the youth category, the Blue Hatchling of the Year. Please join us at our September social, one of the most highly-anticipated Blue Friends Society events, as we announce our finalists to the public.


Individual – $75 *Price increases to $100 on October 7

Arctic Ocean Sponsor – $500

Table Sponsor – $1,000

Southern Ocean Sponsor – $1,000

Indian Ocean Sponsor – $2,500

Pacific Ocean Sponsor – $5,000

Atlantic Ocean Sponsor – $10,000

World Ocean Sponsor – $20,000


  International Coastal Clean-upInternational Coastal Cleanup

On Saturday, September 17, 279 volunteers joined us for the 30th International Coastal Clean-up. Thank you to all of the volunteers who helped collect 139.6 pounds of marine debris from our beach. Last year, nearly 800,000 people world-wide collected more than 18 million pounds of trash. Volunteers found an assortment of marine debris, including head phones, monofilament fishing line, plastic bottles, and Styrofoam cups. Each year, the Ocean Conservancy asks participants to count and log each item collected during the clean-up. This marine debris index provides a global snapshot of the types and sources of marine debris. Last year, plastic bottles, like the ones collected by our volunteers, were reported as the second most commonly found item. Again, thank you to all of the volunteers who helped create a safer environment for our nesting and hatching sea turtles. A BIG thanks to Carl Stearns, the Blue Friends Society Beach Clean-up Chair, for his dedication, passion and hard work on this event. A special thank you to our sponsors, including Jim Stanton with UBS Financial Services, Inc., Whole Foods Market-Downtown at the Gardens and Oceana Coffee! Help make a difference in ocean conservation by joining us for our next beach clean-up on October 15 at 8:30 a.m.

Sip, Shop and Support LMC

Our wonderful partners at Harbourside Place and Tommy Bahama are hosting a great night to benefit Loggerhead Marinelife Center! Please join us on Thursday, September 29 from 5-7 p.m. to sip, shop and support LMC. For a $20 donation, you will enjoy wine tastings in the Harbourside shops followed by complimentary wine and appetizers in Tommy Bahama. Plus, they will also offer a special dining deal for all attendees! Tickets available at the door and online: or by calling (561) 627-8280 ext. 123



Rehab Takes on Water Quality

Rahab VolunteersWaterDo you ever wonder what our volunteers and interns are doing to help the rehabilitation department? There are many tasks that must be accomplished throughout the day to provide the best medical care and daily husbandry to our turtle patients. If you have visited our world-class facility, you may have seen the rehabilitation volunteers cleaning tanks and making sure the turtle yard is clean. What you may not be familiar with is what they do behind the scenes. One of the important daily tasks is to conduct water quality tests. Every day, they take a sample of water from a few of our sea turtle tanks to test specific parameters measured to make sure our turtles are kept in the best possible environment. The results are examined by our hospital staff and reported to Florida Fish and Wildlife. Proper water quality is important to the health of our patients and the rest of the ocean’s animals.

 SWIM Padre Ramos, Nicaragua

SWIM – Padre RaBear Smallermos, Nicaragua – Eastern Pacific Sea Turtle Monitoring & Conservation. This week, SWIM participants join members of the LMC staff in traveling to Estero Padre Ramos Natural Reserve in Nicaragua on our final 2016 SWIM destination eco-tour program. The Serving the World’s Imperiled Marine life (SWIM) program aims to help other conservation-minded organizations with central projects to aid in local and global conservation efforts. During this SWIM program, participants will assist with in-water sea turtle monitoring, sea turtle nesting activity, mangrove reforestation, community-based tourism and educational activities in one of the most ecologically-important natural areas in Nicaragua. During SWIM participants’ stay, they will attend the annual Hawksbill Festival – a community event that aims to educate locals about sea turtle protection and awareness. For more information on how to become involved and to book future SWIM conservation eco-tours, please contact Hannah at



 Juno Beach Pier Underwater Clean-ups

On August 9, a team of divers fromMarine Debris Clean-up LMC and Jupiter Dive Center held an underwater clean-up at the Juno Beach Pier. Though over 80 pounds of debris were collected, much more remained. LMC staff returned on August 24 and brought the total amount of debris removed in the month of August to just over 100 pounds. Volunteers are currently working at the center to sort the debris. Monofilament line will be sent off for recycling, lead weights will be melted down and used to make dive weights and fishing gear will be salvaged to help teach responsible angling lessons at the pier. Thank you to Jupiter Dive Center, Jeff Biege Photography and LMC volunteers for your dedicated work to clean up the environment.




2016 Beach Programs Recap!Biologist Beach Walk

Thank you to all of the guests, volunteers and staff who participated in this seasons’ beach programs! Over the course of August and September, our guests had the opportunity to participate in our Biologist Beach Walks and Hatchling Release programs. These programs allowed guests to experience what it’s like to be a sea turtle researcher, as well as learn more about sea turtle nesting and hatching. Our Biologist Beach Walk program gave guests the opportunity to observe a permitted LMC staff member perform a nest excavation – an essential step in collecting critical date in order to understand sea turtle activity on our beaches. Thank you to all of the guests who shared their photos of their experiences with us! If you have photos of your experience, please consider emailing your photos to or posting them on our Facebook page.

 ProgramAstronomy Nights Spotlight: Astronomy Nights

LMC’s popular stargazing program has returned for its second season! In partnership with the Astronomical Society of the Palm Beaches, LMC will host its Astronomy Nights program each month based on celestial events. The first program will be held on Friday, October 7 from 7-9:30 p.m. The night will begin with a seminar led by the Astronomical Society of the Palm Beaches, entitled Planetpalooza. You will be able to view several planets on this very popular stargazing night, including Venus, Mars, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. Join us as we discuss the different physical attributes of each planet and why you can view them on this particular day. Then, join us in Loggerhead Park to peer through powerful telescopes and binoculars to get a closer look! In case of inclement weather, the presentation will be extended to include additional information on a related astronomical topic. Cost is $10/adults, $5/children and can be paid upon entrance. For more information, please contact Hannah Campbell at or (561) 627-8280 ext. 105.


Marine Science AcadeMY

Calling all high school students interested in marine science! LMC is launching a brand new Marine Science Academy for high school students in Palm Beach and Martin counties. Throughout the year-long program, students will learn about marine biology and oceanography while kayaking, snorkeling and participating in field work, citizen science and conservation projects at LMC. Deadline for applications is September 30!


Kids FishingDo you know an aspiring young angler? Join us for a Kids’ Fishing Program at the Juno Beach Pier! Upcoming programs will be held on September 24 and October 2 from 8-11 a.m. Participants will learn basic techniques including knot tying, casting, species identification and proper release protocols in addition to conservation measures such as habitat protection, sea turtle rescue and the importance of collecting and recycling monofilament fishing line. Participants will leave with the knowledge and experience necessary to serve as responsible anglers. The cost is $10 per angler. To reserve a spot in a fishing program, please contact Demi at (561) 627-8280 ext. 107 or Space is limited.



Private Fishing Lessonsladyfish

Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s Juno Beach Pier staff are now offering private fishing lessons for adults and kids, ages 8 and up! If you’d like to learn from expert anglers about fishing techniques and how you can help protect and restore the marine environment, please contact Demi at One-hour lessons will be held on Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7 a.m., 8 a.m., 4 p.m. and 5 p.m.








Virtual Field Trips

Virtual ToursBring LMC to your classroom this school year! With just a computer and a Skype account, Virtual Field Trips allow students to experience our sea turtle hospital. Staff connects with classrooms worldwide for a lesson on sea turtle ecology, an introduction to each of our sea turtle patients, and plenty of time for questions at the end. If you know a classroom that may be interested in booking a Virtual Field Trip, or have any questions, please contact Demi at 561-627-8280 ext. 107 or





Winter Programming Showcase

Winter programming is back at LMC! October marks the return of our popular winter programs and we need you to help us kick off the season! Come check out this year’s winter program offerings by visiting us on October 9 for our Winter Program Showcase event. Our regularly scheduled programs will be jam-packed in one day and offered for FREE from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. for children of all ages*. New this year: walk through our birthday party room and check out what it’s like to party with sea turtles! Free cake samples and birthday party craft activities will be offered during the event as well as information on our new deluxe theme packages! Programs include Dr. Logger, Guided Tours and a Birthday Party Open House, plus information on all 2016-2017 seasonal offerings! For more information and to check out the exciting event program schedule, please visit*On campus registration only on a first come, first serve basis. See you there!



Our annual “spook-tacular” Halloween event is on October 22, 2016 and is sure to be a blast for the entire family! From 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., bring your ghouls and goblins for a visit with our sea turtle patients and receive a free turtle-y awesome reusable trick-or-treat bag to use on the big day! Then, peek into the Haunted Hospital, experiment with our mad scientists in the Mad Science Lab and swim around our center through this year’s new Strange Seas Exhibit. From estuaries to the open ocean, children will be led through corals reefs, Jelly Junction and the Abyssopelagic Zone to explore the weird and wonderful mysteries of the deep. Two costume contests will be held at noon and 2:30 p.m. that will award the best-dressed with turtley-awesome LMC giveaways. Don’t forget the Halloween-inspired crafts and face painting to get you in the TurtleWeen spirit! For more information, please visit our website.






The nesting turtles are still here! Nesting has slowed down quite a bit within the last month, but our research team is still recording new sea turtle nests on a daily basis. As of September 15, we have recorded 16,082 nests along our survey area (160 leatherback, 15,233 loggerhead and 689 green turtle nests). This year is the second highest nesting year on record for LMC biologists. The current record year is 2015 with 16,335 nests.

Leatherback, loggerhead and green sea turtles each have about a four month long nesting season each year. The first species to nest on our beaches are the leatherbacks, followed by the loggerheads and then last to come ashore are the green turtles. All three species can be found nesting alongside one another in June to early July. To show how this nesting overlaps, we have graphed the number of nests laid by each species per month below for March-August 2016. Below, there is also a table of the nest counts by species.
Sea Turtle Nesting Report Sept. 16Nesting Numbers Per MonthNesting Report



 Volunteer of the Month 2016We would like to give a huge congratulations to LMC’s September volunteer of the month, Donna Kaminski! Donna is a volunteer in the LMC Education Department. Donna started volunteering at LMC in July of 2015. Since starting at LMC, Donna has volunteered for 315 hours. She volunteers at least once per weekend as well as assists with all of our special events, extra programs and conservation initiatives. Donna always has a great attitude, is extremely helpful to Education staff and enjoys educating our visitors about our sea turtle patients.
Donna is trained in many education programs including the Junior Vet Lab, Fish Feedings and Scout Programs. She leads the Junior Vet Lab three times per shift on Saturdays and the attendees always enjoy her great program. Donna also assists with our Red Tide Offshore Monitoring Project by collecting water samples from the Juno Beach Pier each week.
When not volunteering at LMC, Donna is busy attending classes at Palm Beach State College where she studies environmental science. It is because of loyal and hardworking volunteers like Donna that we are able to continue saving sea turtles. We thank Donna for being such a great addition to the LMC volunteer team.


Mascot Corner: A Trash free ocean starts with U. Let’s get started!

Hello friends,

Fletch here, the lovable and huggable Loggerhead Marinelife Center mascot. Last month I talked to you about trash in my ocean home. This month, I would like to recognize those individuals or organizations that are committed to keeping my ocean home “Clean and Blue, Trash Free.” Thank you for your support, in this very important global initiative. To recognize those individuals or organizations for their commitment to a “Clean and Blue, Trash Free” ocean, I have established the “Fletch Ocean Champion” certificate of excellence award:

This award recognizes their dedication, passion and support of this very important global initiative, for a trash free ocean. If you know someone who exhibits the qualities of an ocean champion, print out the certificate (click on the above image), fill in their name and present the recipient with the award. Then send Fletch an email ( and tell me their name, where they live and what they have done or are doing for a trash-free ocean. I will then add their name to the ocean champion team roster on my webpage. If we all do just a little, together we can accomplish a lot. Remember, keeping my ocean home “Clean and Blue, Trash Free” starts with U. Let’s get started!

Gift Store Recruits College AmbassadorsGift Store

Over the past few years, our gift store has added an e-store, which features five new items every week. As our gift store continues to expand and grow, so does its global reach. We receive emails and messages from supporters around the country and world inquiring about products in our gift store. In attempt to expand LMC’s brand awareness, the gift store has added a new addition – College Ambassadors. We firmly believe that the future of sea turtles lies in the hands of young innovators. And what better place to find young innovators than a college campus? Our college ambassadors will spread LMC’s brand including new gift store items, special promotions and social events across their college campuses. This semester, our college ambassadors are located at Clemson University in South Carolina and Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida.



A Fresh Breath of Salt Air -VENDOR SPOTLIGHT WITH Geoffrey Schmidt

Geoffrey Schmidt

Name: Geoffrey Schmidt
Florida Salt Scrubs
Boca Raton, Florida
Dream superpower:
The superpower of making music.
Estore product:
Florida Salt Scrubs

How long have you been creating salt scrubs? Our business started in January of 2012. This came when we experienced salt scrubs in a Florida Keys restroom bathroom sink. I’m into natural living, healthy living, things like that. It was through that natural curiosity and the salt scrubs. So, I asked how we could make it better and take it to the next level. We went to green markets, which was a great opportunity to have people try the product. I figured that if they bought it, they would be on the positive side – they at least liked it beyond 50 percent, which was really good. We modified the formulas just to see what sold better than others. Over time, I’d like to think we really got our signature formula. Now it can be purchased across the state!

Where did you learn this skill? I’m self taught. When I get into something, I dive deep. Once we had the formula and our demand was increasing, I took it to a contract manufacturer, who made the formula come to life. But, the formula has to pass their lab testing, such as good manufacturing practices and quality control. After I sent it over to them, they came back and asked if I had a background in chemistry, and told me there was nothing to add to the formula. And they ran with it!

Tell us about your product and what separates it from similar products? There’s huge distinctions – one of the biggest ones is the salt grain size – which is pulverized into powder-grain size. It’s gentler on someone’s skin – that being said, the customer can benefit more. This delivers minerals into your skin more easily. We use Atlantic sea salts and coconut oil, which is the best for the skin. The scents are all from Florida, like key lime, orange, coconut, lemongrass, grapefruit, lemon and coconut mango.

Where do you find ideas for your work? Where do you like to see art? I look at it like how you would look at life. People like to put everything in a box and label it and put it on the shelf. But everything is happening around you all the time and is all connected. The rules that apply in business apply in life – they never change. The only thing that might change is the name we put on it. Art is everywhere – it’s life. Some people think you have to see art at a museum, but there are masterpieces all around you. Office space allows for a different kind of artwork than a painter would create, but it’s still art. People value what they want and what makes them feel good. So I want to make people feel. The product should create an instant connection, create a memory. Once that connection is in place, they can then take it home and be blown away with what’s inside. Often, something looks aesthetically pleasing, but what’s inside? It’s “eh.” And some killer products have horrible packaging. We want people to have an all-around great experience. So, we don’t spare expense when it comes to making a great product.

What do you love about your work? We make our products with love – no joke! Everyone is here because they want to be here. Lots of positive energy.Salt Scrub

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve heard when it comes to chasing your dreams? I was a business coach and I had a company that I built and sold called Florida Surf Lessons. After I sold it I went into business coaching. I’ve always believed in following your intuition. How many times have you talked with your family and friends who have great ideas, but nothing happens because no one takes action? An idea is a gift. You have to take action. In a business, you’ll be tested. Roads will not always be smooth. People are going to get tested, but you better pick up the ball and grow and thrive and get stronger in life. Go in with a mindset of being real. You don’t need thousands of dollars either – I only spent 35 dollars to get to the first green market I did.

How is your business sustainable, and what is the benefit of buying local? There’s no shortage of salts. And we get our coconut oil from coconut farms. We use essential oils made from leftover oranges or other produce that isn’t fit to be sold at a market. We use a Prius, and our big truck is a Ford Transit, which has better gas mileage. As for buying local? It’s great because you support the local economy when it’s good business.


Thank you to Tideline Resort for donating a percentage of food and beverage sales at the Worth Avenue Association Turtle Tuesday beach clean-up last month!

Tideline Resort Beach Clean-up

Volunteers in front of the Tideline Resort during a Turtle Tuesday beach clean-up


Special thanks to the Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) for raising over $1,300 for Loggerhead at their latest conference.

Fletch selling raffle tickets at HFTP

Thank you to Maxwell Vanderslice, who requested that friends and family donate to LMC in lieu of giving gifts for his 10th birthday in August. We are grateful to Maxwell’s friends and family for celebrating his birthday by supporting the center!
Thank you for your Support

Max (left) and Liam (right) visiting LMC

Thank you to Lavinia Lloyd, who chose to not receive gifts for her 6th birthday, but instead to raise money to “help save turtles.” We are incredibly thankful for Lavinia’s generous and kind act!
Lavinia Lloyd

Lavinia visiting with Pearson at LMC


Last February, Florida Power and Light opened Manatee Lagoon, an eco-discovery center thato educates guests about the Florida manatee, easily seen in the wintertime just outside of the center. As a proud partner of the facility, LMC was selected to manage the gift store and café. With a multi-functional educational center, a manatee webcam, two levels of observation areas and so much more, LMC is grateful to partner with Manatee Lagoon and is excited to watch the center grow as a world-class educational facility in Palm Beach County. Together, we can continue to raise awareness about the sea turtle and the manatee, and help inspire our neighbors, friends and family to be leaders of ocean conservation. For more information on Manatee Lagoon’s programs and hours, please visit Manatee Lagoon’s website.

September Activities: 

Lake Worth Lagoon Talk – The Lake Worth Lagoon seagrass beds feed a number of different animals, including manatees. Learn all about the lagoon and the animals that call it home during this talk. September 16, 20, 23, 27 and 30 from 10:30-11:30 a.m. and September 17 and 24 from 2-3 p.m.

Much Ado About Manatees Tour – Join Manatee Lagoon on a walking tour of our visitor center and learn about manatee anatomy, physiology and the importance of GPS tracking devices. September 14, 17, 21, 24 and 28 from 10:30-11:30 a.m.

Manatee Tales: Storytime & Craft – Story time and craft for children ages 3 to 8. September 15, 22 and 29 from 10:30-11:30 a.m.

Mindful Moments Yoga (Adult) – Join Manatee Lagoon for yoga classes against the beautiful calming backdrop of Lake Worth Lagoon. September 15, 22 and 29 from 5:45-6:45 p.m. and September 17 and 24 from 2:30-3:30 p.m.

Junior Aqua Lab – A series of four experimental activities that deal with some of the properties of water. Ages 9 to 14. September 18 and 25 from 10:30-11:30 a.m.

Children’s Art Class – Please arrive at least 10 minutes prior to the scheduled start time of class. At 12:30, any open seats will be offered to other guests. September 17 and 24 from 12:30-2 p.m.

September Lecture Series: 

Lecture: School Yard Films – Tom Fitz presents a lecture on the difficulties of filming wildlife. September 18 from 2-3 p.m.

Lecture: Underwater Clean-up Manatee Master Rachel Shanker dives into her experience with our very own recent clean up effort at Manatee Lagoon. September 25 from 2-3 p.m.