CEO CHATTER WITH JACK LIGHTON
Dear Friend of LMC:
On behalf of our entire Center, I would like to welcome you to the Holiday Season! As 2016 draws to a close, we have much for which to be thankful. As we peer at the horizon of 2017, we are excited to embark upon another successful year focused on our mission of ocean and sea turtle conservation.
This year, our campus is once again on track to welcome a record number of guests and students. It is because of the support of our team of staff, volunteers and donors that we are able to accomplish our goals, increasing our education and conservation impact.
The holiday season is also the giving season. As such, we have kicked off our Annual Fund Campaign. This year’s campaign underscores the lifesaving work our team accomplished with “Xander,” a beautiful loggerhead sea turtle patient who was severely injured due to marine debris. LMC was there for Xander just as we are there for thousands of sea turtles every year. With the loving care of our team, we returned Xander to health and his ocean home. We rely on the support of our community to power our Center’s mission, and we hope people will consider a gift to our tax-deductible Annual Fund Campaign before the end of the year.
Speaking of marine debris, I would like to thank everyone who participated in our recent Blue Friday event, where in less than two hours, volunteers removed over 100 pounds of marine debris from our local beaches. While our team here at home was busy protecting the coastline, on an international basis, our Chief Conservation Officer Tommy Cutt collaborated on a beach clean-up and marine debris conference in Hong Kong in partnership with the Ocean Conservancy. Increasingly due to your support, LMC’s impacts are being felt on a global basis.
If you have not been to our campus in a few weeks, our guests and team are buzzing with excitement about our newly-installed breezeway sign, which reveals the rendering of our upcoming Capital Expansion. In 2007 our campus opened with 100,000 guests. This year, we are on track to welcome over 300,000 guests! In order to continue increasing our impact, it is time for us to expand our campus. Stay tuned – our very exciting expansion campaign will launch at our upcoming 10th Annual Lights Out Gala!
On behalf of our entire team, I thank you for your tremendous support and passion for our mission. It is because of you that we are able to expand our impact and continue the good work our founder Mrs. Fletcher began over 30 years ago.
Wishing you and yours Happy Holidays.
Jack E. Lighton
President & CEO
Be an Ocean Hero TOday!
The time is now. Our oceans and sea turtles desperately need your help. Become an Ocean Hero by making your year-end, tax-deductible gift, which will provide lifesaving care for our sea turtle patients. Your support will help expand our impact in ocean and sea turtle conservation.
With your support, year-to-date we have:
- Removed 2882.18 pounds of marine debris through the Responsible Pier Initiative (RPI)
- Implemented the RPI on 51 piers
- Facilitated the recuse of 224 sea turtles through the RPI
- Documented 40,884 sea turtle nests sea turtle nests and non-nesting emergences (false crawls) on local beaches
- Treated 61 patients in our hospital
- Taught 10,192 students from Palm Beach County schools
No amount is too small; please consider making a gift.
Get Lilly or Louder At BEACH BASH PALM BEACH
Beach Bash Palm Beach, presented by Lilly Pulitzer is the social highlight of the season! More than 600 guests will descend upon the posh Beach Club on the island which made Lilly Pulitzer an iconic resort wear brand. Decked in their brightest Lilly, guests will celebrate “Life Under Printed Palms” while enjoying fabulous fashion, colorful cocktails, delectable bites and pulse-quickening entertainment while mixing with young philanthropic leaders from around the globe. Proceeds will benefit Palm Beach’s ocean and sea turtle conservation hub Loggerhead Marinelife Center. Saving sea turtles never looked so good! To purchase tickets, please visit Beach Bash Palm Beach.
A Holiday Surprise!
The holiday season summons up feelings of joy, love and cheer. So, in celebration of this warm and fuzzy time of year, we’ve got a special holiday twist during the month of December for our adoption program! When adopting online during December, you can choose to swap out the LMC canvas tote (included in the Enhanced, Premium and Deluxe adoption levels) in favor of a reusable winter-themed bag. They come in three beautiful blue shades, help support LMC and give you the opportunity to jazz up your adoption gift for friends and family. It’s the perfect way to celebrate the holidays!
‘Tis The Sea-Son To SHell-E-Brate
Celebrate this holiday season with sea turtles during our SEA–sonal Celebration event on Dec. 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.! The event will feature ocean-friendly activities throughout the day, including a Responsible Decorator station for guests to create turtle-friendly holiday ornaments, a wish garland for our recovering sea turtle patients and a free behind-the-scenes tours of our Turtle Yard. Kids will have the opportunity to sit with Festive Fletch and share their holiday wish for the ocean. Thanks to Jupiter Bounce, guests can capture their wish for the ocean or our patients in a fun photo booth.
Sea-sonal Celebration Activities
- Responsible Decorator Kit – Guests will receive one Responsible Decorator Kit* as they leave LMC that contains all the materials needed to make one holiday ornament with 100 percent post-consumer recycled material and personalized instruction kit on how to reduce their impact on the environment during the holiday season.
- Responsible Decorator DIY Ornaments – Guests will be able create their own homemade ornament with their families on campus to showcase in their home.
- Wish Garland & Photo Booth – Guests will share their wish for the ocean or our patients (cleaner, healthier, debris-free, etc.) and create a wish garland to display on campus for the holidays. From now until our SEA-sonal Celebration, we are collecting wishes for our sea turtle patients. We will display all cards on a wish garland during the event. Simply purchase a card in our gift store or make one of your own and write a wish for one of our sea turtle patients. Please either mail or deliver your wish to Loggerhead Marinelife Center (14200 U.S. HWY 1 Juno Beach, FL 33408)
- Free campus programming – Select family programming will be offered for free during the SEA-sonal Celebration event. These programs are limited in participants and fill on a first come first serve basis. Times vary throughout the day, including Dr. Logger Shows, Junior Vet Labs, Turtle Yard Tours and a Birthday Party Open House.
Meet Me At The Beach: BEACH CLEAN-UP
Congratulations to LMC’s Blue Friends Society, who received the Anita Lankler Award for Outstanding Participation in the Solid Waste Authority’s Adopt-A-Spot program. LMC hosts monthly clean-ups, which are organized by the Blue Friends Society, on the third Saturday of every month. These clean-ups are open to the public and are sponsored by Whole Foods and Oceana Coffee. We are so grateful for all of the Blue Friends Society’s hard work! We invite you to join this dedicated group of LMC supporters at their monthly beach clean-up on Saturday, Dec. 17 at 8:30 a.m.
Please meet the LMC Blue Friends Society at 8:30 a.m. (please note new time) at the back gate of the center and help to keep our local ocean and beach environments free from trash and litter. We will clean the beach adjacent to LMC; from north of the center to the Juno Beach Pier and south to Town Center. We encourage volunteers to wear a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen to protect themselves from the sun. In addition, please bring a bucket to collect the trash – we have eliminated plastic bags from our beach clean-ups and have a limited supply of buckets.
A NIGHT OUT OF THIS WORLD
On Friday, Dec. 9, please join us for a night that will be out of this world! Our Astronomy Nights program is offered once a month based on the activity of the night sky. Aside from learning about the stars and planets, this program also touches on light pollution and sky glow, encouraging guests to increase their awareness of their impact on the environment. The night will begin with a seminar led by the Astronomical Society of the Palm Beaches, featuring highlights of the current night sky and end with a peer through powerful telescopes and binoculars to get a closer look.
The spiral Andromeda Galaxy, the nearest major galaxy to our Milky Way, contains a trillion stars. Its smooth red central bulge is made up of older cool stars, unlike its spiral arms full of hot young blue stars. It is believed Andromeda and the Milky Way will collide in 3.75 billion years. The “W” shaped constellation Cassiopeia lies within our Milky Way; seen through the telescope it has bright stars that are actually double stars. The Coat Hanger, or Brocchi’s Cluster, is an asterism, a pattern of stars – not a constellation.
Cost: $10 adults, $5 children | Ages: Geared towards 8+
For more information or to reserve your spot, contact: Hannah Campbell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hatched: RESEARCH REPORT
This year (2016) was a great year for our research department, with the turtles keeping our staff quite busy. Two of our biggest accomplishments were data collected from the Leatherback Project as well as a record-breaking nesting season for loggerhead sea turtles.
This year, in addition to plenty of work on the beach, one of our team members traveled to Peru to present at the 36th Annual International Symposium on Sea Turtle Biology and Conservation in Lima, Peru. LMC’s Research Data Manager, Sarah Hirsch presented on the effects of geotextile containers that were placed on two different nesting beaches – one was placed in Juno Beach and the other was on the eastern coast of Florida near Sarasota. The geotextile containers are a form of beach erosion control. Her oral presentation focused on the effects on nesting success for loggerhead and green turtles.
As the calendar year comes to a close, our research team is busy working on year-end reports. Additionally, we are also already starting to prepare for the 2017 nesting season and will open the application period for seasonal technician positions later this month.
We could not have had such a successful season of data collection if it weren’t for the dedicated seasonal staff and interns that assisted our research staff members with surveys this summer. We would like to thank Alexis Ferrera, Aubrey Frye, Brian Canitz, Elizabeth Kantra, Jake Lasala, Jen Reilly, Kayla Goforth, McKinzie Wilgus, Samantha Colios and Sara Bolds for their hard work this summer.
Interesting Facts from 2016
- The Leatherback Project observed 51 individual leatherbacks during 72 encounters. This year, 80 percent of the turtles encountered were recaptures (previously tagged by LMC or other researchers) and our team tagged 13 new turtles (turtles found without tags).
- The largest leatherback measured 179.9 centimeters (5.9 feet). This measurement was taken along the top ridge of the carapace (top shell) using a soft measuring tape and does not include the turtle’s head or tail in the length.
- In peak season our crew checked on over 700 marked nests (staked nests) in a single day!
- Our team conducted over 1,000 nest excavations (inventories of nest contents).
- The largest nest that we excavated contained 175 eggs and was laid by a loggerhead on Jupiter Beach.
- The deepest nest measured 134.6 centimeters (53 inches) to the bottom of the egg chamber and was laid by a leatherback on Juno Beach.
Microplastics: A MaCRO Problem
Nicole Montgomery, hospital coordinator, and Samantha Clark, veterinary technician, attended the 2016 Florida Keys Sea Turtle Workshop from Dec. 2-4 at the Turtle Hospital in Marathon, Florida. There were several sea turtle rehabilitation organizations, research institutes, universities and conservationists represented at this meeting. Samantha presented on “Plastic Packed Post-Hatchlings and Our Treatment Protocol.” The presentation was received well, and stimulated many questions from other organizations. Nicole spoke about the custom-built medical record system that will be in use at Loggerhead Marinelife Center beginning January 2017. There were many other great talks from veterinary medical professionals, biologists and specialists from the sea turtle world. Information about interesting cases and innovative procedures help each facility learn and improve care for sea turtle patients.
“Sea turtles don’t dwell in deserts. So why are you here?” – A comment the conservation and marketing team heard routinely throughout their time at the 2016 Dive Equipment and Marketing Association show (DEMA). Our fellow attendees had a point that sea turtles reside a long way from Nevada, so why did we travel to Las Vegas for this show? DEMA attracts dive operators and ocean enthusiasts from all over the world – an opportunity our conservation team could not pass up. Loggerhead Marinelife Center officially launched the sea turtle-safe diving component of Project SHIELD, a program designed to offer viable conservation solutions and pollution prevention projects to fishing piers, recreational boaters, beach-side hotels, snorkel and SCUBA operators, fishing charter operators and beach access points. At the show, our team searched for dive operators to partner with on our sea turtle-safe diving initiative. This initiative asks dive operators to follow a set of guidelines, including staying a safe distance from sea turtles, and teach their students or guests how to create a safer experience for sea turtles and divers. In addition, our team provided a pledge wall for attendees to pledge to live out a “blue” lifestyle of ocean conservation. Several attendees posed with signs pledging to go #PlasticFreeWithLMC and spread their own conservation ideas. After a long week at DEMA, our team left having met ocean enthusiasts from all over the world and establishing several new partnerships. For more information on becoming a Project SHIELD partner, please contact Tommy Cutt at email@example.com.
Blown Up And Broken Down
On Dec. 2 Tommy Cutt, chief conservation officer, and Demi Fox, outreach coordinator, traveled to Marathon, Florida to attend the 2016 Florida Keys Sea Turtle Workshop. Our conservation team presented their research on Project SHIELD, a multi-faceted program that provides conservation solutions as well as pollution prevention projects. After working with our Responsible Pier Initative partners locally and globally, our conservation team identified the need to establish a program to address the threats sea turtles face in different areas of the world.
In 2013, Loggerhead Marinelife Center staff began partnering with other sea turtle organizations to rescue turtles accidentally hooked on fishing piers and provide ways to recycle items used on the pier. With the help of participating piers and organizations, our conservation team has been able to collect significant data over the course of the past three years. At the workshop, our conservation team presented their research “Project SHIELD: Conservation Solutions for Reducing Anthropogenic Interactions.” Our conservation team works to provide viable solutions to the human-caused injuries often treated in our hospital, including plastic ingestion. Sea turtles face many threats; our staff focuses on plastic pollution and other human-caused stressors.
In an effort to reduce the amount of pollution and plastic in our oceans and our sea turtles, our conservation team has designed several pollution prevention programs, including the Balloon Ban. Although preventing all debris from entering the sea is vital, balloons are an additive threat. When balloons are released in to the sky, they can end up in our oceans. Balloons. Often, sea turtles mistake balloons for food and ingest them; this can cause a sea turtle to become ill or even suffocate. In addition, Project SHIELD provides partners with recycling containers for monofilament, cigarette butts, and drink containers. During the workshop, our team established more connections and discussed ways to expand the program. For more information on participating in our conservation initiatives, please visit Project SHIELD.
Come SWIM With LMC!
This year, our education team designed Serving the World’s Imperiled Marine Life (SWIM), an ecotourism program, to be a travel experience that would be more than just a vacation. SWIM trips are an opportunity for guests to immerse themselves in marine conservation efforts, while broadening their scope of local and global initiatives. Our planet’s heart beats blue, if yours does too come SWIM with us.
During the month of December, the education department is discounting select programs as a part of the Great Program Give. Until Jan. 1, all 2017 SWIM trips will be offered for $200 off original pricing. For more information on registration and pricing, please contact Hannah Campbell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Serving the World’s Imperiled Marine life (SWIM): $200 off 2017 pricing
- $1,499 Padre Ramos, Nicaragua
- $2,299 Maui, Hawai’i
Sea Turtle Savers
Registration is now open for our first ever Winter Break Sea Turtle Savers program!
This week-long program runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday for five days of guaranteed, non-stop turtle-y fun for aspiring scientists ages 6 to 9! Junior scientists will join LMC staff as they explore Florida’s natural areas and learn everything sea turtle at one of south Florida’s busiest sea turtle rehabilitation centers. Participants will learn what it’s like to take a sea turtle from rescue to release through hands-on activities and by experiencing an active-working sea turtle hospital first hand. Upcoming dates include:
- Monday, Dec. 26 – Friday, Dec. 30, 2016
- Monday, March 20 – Friday, March 24, 2017
*Do you know someone who loves children and has a passion for marine science? We are looking for Counselors-In-Training (CITs) to help LMC staff during these Sea Turtle Saver Programs by assisting with activities, lessons and facilitating the fun!
Science for Seniors. Help us kick off our FREE Science for Seniors lecture series offered Tuesdays at 2 p.m. on Jan. 3, 2017 by joining us for our third annual Senior Day! Join featured speaker, Dr. Paul Brown, to discuss health and science while enjoying complimentary coffee and donuts as well as 10 percent off in the Gift Store during this FREE one hour lecture at Loggerhead Marinelife Center. A Harvard College and Tufts University of Medicine alumnus, Dr. Brown offers a dynamic presentation and truly has a gift for bringing seniors out of their shells!
To reserve your seat for the official kick-off of LMC’s Science for Seniors program, please contact Hannah Campbell at email@example.com or by calling (561) 627-8280 ext. 105. Kindly RSVP as space is limited.
Mommy & Me Paint! ‘Tis the season for family time and giving thanks to those who matter most in your children’s lives. Mommy and Me Paint! offers the perfect way to say “thank you,” turtle-style! Join us any Thursday at 10:30 a.m. for our weekly Mommy & Me Paint! class, where children ages 2-5 can enjoy a story time, sea turtle learning lesson and paint their very own ceramic sea turtle! These ceramics make great gifts to those who mean most to your aspiring artist.
*During the month of December, the education department is discounting select programs, including Mommy & Me Paint (Buy One, Get One): $8 for two painters.
Can’t make it to a program in time for the holidays? Contact Hannah at firstname.lastname@example.org to purchase a gift certificate to a Mommy & Me Paint class in the future and give the gift of a sea turtle experience to a loved one. For more information, visit www.marinelife.org/experiences.
IT’s A WRAP: BLUE FRIDAY
We had an amazing time at our annual Blue Friday event this year! We are grateful to everyone who participated in our coastal clean-ups. With everyone’s help, we removed 101.88 pounds of marine debris from our local beaches, parks and waterways! Many guests also visited with our sea turtle patients, pledged to live a “blue” lifestyle of ocean conservation and reduce waste during the holidays, and visited our gift store for fun local holiday shopping.
In addition, Blue Friday marked the end of our Candy Wrapper recycling program that we began in October. We launched this program at TurtleWeen asking local Palm Beach County teachers to collect Halloween candy wrappers. On the last week of November, we collected and weighed the bags, which totaled over 60 pounds of candy wrappers. Thank you to everyone who participated in our candy wrapper recycling program and Blue Friday event!
MASCOT CORNER: KEEP THE RESOLUTION
Fletch here, the huggable and lovable Loggerhead Marinelife Center mascot. Humans have a tradition at the start of each New Year called a “New Year’s Resolution.” My sea turtle friends and I can only hope that your 2017 New Year’s Resolution is to keep my ocean home clean and blue, trash-free. It’s simple, you and your family can take the Marinelife Guardian Pledge and practice its principals as part of your daily lifestyle:
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Respect and Cleanup
- Reduce the amount of waste you produce
- Reuse something instead of throwing it away
- Recycle something old and make it into something new
- Respect the environment, don’t trash it, and
Cleanup the environment where others have trashed it
Following my four environmental “R’s” and a “C” each day will help save the oceans my sea turtle friends and I call HOME.
So at this time of holiday spirits, I wish you and your family a safe, healthy, and prosperous New Year. Thank you for caring!
Click here to take the Marinelife Guardian Pledge.
FishinG In A SUmmer Wonderland
Conservationist of the Month. We are very grateful for the anglers on the Juno Beach Pier who do their part to help protect the marine environment. Each month we recognize an angler as the Juno Beach Pier Conservationist of the Month. The chosen angler has their photo displayed in the bait house for the month and receives a pass for 10 free days of fishing on the pier. Our December conservationist of the month is Michelle, a local angler on the pier. Often, visitors notice her helping other anglers return fish to the water quickly. Michelle regularly picks up trash on the pier and properly disposes of it. Regularly, she can be overheard providing other anglers with information on fish size and limit regulations. We are thankful for Michelle’s willingness to assist other anglers and keep the pier clean.
Kid’s Pier Fishing. Do you know an aspiring young angler? Join us for a Kid’s Fishing Program at the Juno Beach Pier! Upcoming programs will be held on Dec. 24 from 8 to 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. To reserve a spot in a fishing program, please contact Demi at (561) 627-8280 ext. 107 or email@example.com. Space is limited.
Private Fishing Lessons. For many, fishing is a way of life – rising and setting with the sun and spending countless hours on beaches, piers and boats. It’s an activity that knows no age limit and is rewarding no matter the outcome. At the Juno Beach Pier, our staff aims to pass down the craft through private fishing lessons. Open to all, lessons are available on Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday at 7 a.m., 8 a.m., 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. If you’d like to learn fishing techniques and how you can help protect and restore the marine environment from expert anglers, please contact Demi at firstname.lastname@example.org.
VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH
It is because of loyal and hardworking volunteers, like Rosemary, that we are able to continue saving sea turtles. We thank Rosemary for being such a great addition to the LMC VolunteerTeam.
We WIll Miss You, Suzy!
With a heavy heart, we are saddened to announce that Suzy Thompson, volunteer, has passed away. Suzy was a beloved volunteer at the center and will be greatly missed. Daily, her generosity and kindness shined through and will continue to shine through as her family members have requested that memorial donations be made to LMC. Her dedication and devotion to the center was immeasurable. The entire LMC family has fond memories of Suzy and sends our condolences to her family. *Below we have provided Suzy’s obituary published in the Palm Beach Post.
“Mrs. Suzanne K. Thompson, age 73, of Jupiter, Florida passed away on November 10, 2016 at JFK Medical Center in Atlantis, Florida. Mrs. Thompson was born on August 16, 1943 in Hartford, Connecticut to the late John Peter Kasavage. Surviviors include her husband; Norman B. Thompson, brother; Kenneth J. Kasavage; sister-in-law; Sandra (Ravalese) Kasavage, nephew; Kenneth J. Kasavage, Jr., niece-es; Darcy Gumkowski and Kimberly Gumkowski, brother-in-law; Jonathan P. Thompson, sister-in;aw; Tara (Boitet0 Thompson and brother-in-law; Stephen T. Thompson, sister-in=law; Helen G. Thompson. During her working years, Suzabbe was involved in the various aspects of real estate, including sales, relocation services, and office management for such companies as Coldwell Banker in New Jersey and various smaller companies in Ohio. In her retirement years Suzanne became involved with the Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach, Florida. There she welcomed guests and explained how the center was a hospital exclusively dedicated to the rehabilitation and preservation of the various species of injured sea turtles that frequent Florida’s eastern shore. Suzanne also developed a fondness for freshwater fishing in the lakes of Connecticut and many times she would bring home her favorite fish, a large mouth bass, to be enjoyed as the centerpiece of a fine evening meal. Suzanne was always fond of saying, “Keep a smile on your face, love in your heart, and beverage of choice close by.” She will be greatly missed by all her friends and family. Memorial services will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that memorial donations may be made to Loggerhead Marinelife Center in her name and can be reached online at www.marinelife.org or https://marinelife.org/help/give or via phone (561) 627-8280 extension 103.” – Palm Beach Post.
My Giving Story
Last week, we were taken aback by the amount of support we received from guests, supporters and volunteers. Over the course of Blue Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday and #GivingTuesday we were immersed in support. We are very thankful for everyone who participated in these days and worked to spread our mission of sea turtle and ocean conservation! In celebration of #GivingTuesday we asked supporters, volunteers and staff to tell us why they give to LMC, which we have featured on our Facebook page. Although #GivingTuesday has ended, the official Giving Tuesday organization has extended their My Giving Story submissions until Dec. 31. We encourage everyone to participate in sharing their own personal giving story. We also ask that you please consider entering the official contest, post your story on our Facebook page with the hashtag #WhyIGive, or submit your story to Amanda Moore at email@example.com. Thank you again for your generous support!
Opportunities to give back. On Wednesday, Dec. 7 our Education Intern Tyler delivered all of the Toys for Tots that were collected over the past few months. Thank you to everyone who participated in our annual drive! Next year, please remember to look out for our annual toy drive. If you missed our toy collection, but are still looking for a way to give back to our community you can participate in our Food Drive. From now until Dec. 17 we will accept donations items. Some of the most needed items are: hot and cold cereal, rice, pasta, canned and dry soups, canned fruit, shelf-stable milk, peanut butter, canned beans and canned vegetables. If you are able, please bring a donation with you during your next visit. We will accept items until Dec. 17. Please contact Demi at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
SAVE-THE-DATE: Lights Out Gala!
Please join Loggerhead Marinelife Center on Friday, Jan. 27, 2017 for our 10th Annual Lights Out Gala. Our Honorary Co-chairs John Couris and Roe Green will host you during this Swashbuckler Soirée. Thank you to PNC Bank for sponsoring this event. An additional thank you to Roe Green, Saks 5th Avenue, The Gardens Mall and Jupiter Medical Center for making this event possible.
Deck The Halls WIth LMC!
Deck the halls with LMC, Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la! ‘Tis the season to spread holiday cheer with our gifts that keep on giving. During the holiday season, Loggerhead Marinelife Center offers a plethora of holiday gifts to choose from while supporting sea turtle and ocean conservation. So “tis’ the season” to make a shopping list and check it twice for ways to give back to your community.
This week, Sea Turtle Santa came to town and delivered brand new ornaments and sustainable toys. While visiting our sea turtle patients and checking if our staff was naughty or nice, he dropped off turtle, dolphin and pelican ornaments. These three new ornaments are in addition to our wide selection of holiday decorations and ornaments. After he checked to see if our holiday ornaments were hung up, he put a few presents in the store for small boys and girls. Instead of typical holiday toys, Mr. Sea Turtle Santa brought toys made in sustainable ways, including a recycled boat, recycled truck and recycled garden kit. To see what Mr. Sea Turtle Santa dropped off, visit our gift store or e-store.
Mermaid Tales – VENDOR SPOTLIGHT With Norm Gitzen
Medium: Sculptures and carpentry
Residence: Lake Worth, Florida
Gift Store Item: Jewelry
If you could have any superhero power, what would it be and why? I would be some sort of environmental superhero. When you save the environment, you save the people. And our environment has been so under fire for the last 100 years and doesn’t stand a chance unless we do something! In fact, I would love to find a cartoonist who could turn my mermaid sculpture into a superhero.
How did you get into art? I’ve been doing art my whole life but I never dreamed I could do it for a living. No one steered me that way. I was in ceramics class, which wasn’t considered a guy thing back then, and there was a guy teacher straight out of college, and he hated me and I didn’t know why. But I later found out that he was jealous because I was good at ceramics. So I didn’t go to college for art. My dad was a carpenter, so I went right into construction. Actually, growing up I had seven tree houses and underground forts, I kind of grew up around tools. I started working on my current house when I was 30 and soon after that got into woodworking. I’ve done libraries and shelves for the Museum of Polo & Hall of Fame. And people would swing by my house to check on projects and see my architectural elements, then encourage me to sell them. I sold my mantels at SunFest a few times but it was so much work. There was this one gallery in Palm Beach that loved my work but told me it was too functional; that I needed to do abstract work. But I hate abstract – to me it’s a cop out. Still, I had always wanted to do a mermaid sculpture, so I created a “recognizable abstract” siren sculpture – because you know she’s a mermaid but she is different than normal mermaid sculptures.
What do you hope to do with your art? I want to see my art in public places – especially my vanishing species series. We have to remind people that every animal out there is going to vanish if we don’t do something or change our ways.
What is your inspiration? Nature has always been my muse. And my artistic process is different every time. Sometimes I draw a picture for ideas or, when I’m making a sculpture, I just follow where a stone goes to keep the colors of the rock pure – and I get a nice shape that way.
What medium would you like to try but haven’t yet? I’d like to try and get into finer jewelry, like silversmithing and things like that. I already make a few necklaces, but they’re made with stainless steel; they aren’t as soft as silver or gold. I also need to consider smaller pieces because, like many sculptors, I won’t be able to lift heavy sculptures as I get older.
Do you have any new projects in the works? Because the younger generation doesn’t buy art, I’ve been doing more woodworking with mantels and corbels. For example, I recently worked on the Museum of Polo & Hall of Fame – I did a media room and library with cabinets. And the director was going to have this modern design, but I asked him if I could do my own design. So he submitted my design, and a week later I got a call back to move forward. I’m also working on a wine room in a Wellington residence.
Any advice for young artists? I say go to school for art if possible so you can learn as much as you can. But if you can’t attend school, look for local artists who need an apprentice. In Europe they nurture young people’s talent so they can grow; when kids are young they’re like a sponge and they learn so much. I got a very late start because I put my art on the back burner for 10-15 years. When I was in eighth grade, I was named the most artistic kid and was excited for high school because I thought I’d have better projects and equipment. Although I was so discouraged in high school and lost my early start, thankfully it’s never too late!
*Read more Vendor Spotlights on our gift store blog.
THANK YOU TO OUR AMAZING SUPPORTERS
Thank you to Anisa Stewart at Anisa Jewelry Designs, who has been donating a percentage of the proceeds from her jewelry sales at Loggerhead back to LMC.
Thank you to Gabby Gonzalez, who raised over $400 for LMC by selling handmade turtle bracelets. Gabby has been visiting the center for as long as she can remember and loves turtles, so she feels passionate about our mission. Thank you for your hard work, Gabby!
Thank you to Claire, Edward, Henry and Delia Mooney for selling lemonade, snacks and bracelets at a stand in their neighborhood, raising over $80 for LMC. We’re so lucky to have hardworking young supporters like Claire, Edward, Henry and Delia!
Thank you to Salute Market, who generously hosted our November Blue Friends Society Social. Thanks for your continued support of our center, Salute!
As winter weather blankets the nation, snowbirds flock to South Florida for a tropical escape. Florida natives like to call this time period “snowbird season,” where all of our local attractions become booming with visitors. One new experience for snowbirds to take part in is Manatee Lagoon – An FPL Eco-Discovery Center. Manatee season (November 15 through March 31) happens to coincide with snowbird season. During this time, visitors can see hundreds of manatees gather at Manatee Lagoon as they huddle for warmth. When visiting the center, you learn about how manatees play an integral role in the overall health of Florida’s ecosystems.
During manatee madness, we encourage you to take the time to spread information about the gentle sea cow. If you live in South Florida or a place where manatees congregate during manatee season, then please consider visiting Manatee Lagoon. The Manatee Masters at Manatee Lagoon will provide you with all of the educational materials you will need to spread awareness. For additional information about manatees, please refer to Manatee Lagoon’s activity calendar.
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.
Manatee Lagoon Talk – Join us on a walking tour of our visitor center and learn about manatee anatomy, physiology and the importance of GPS tracking devices, as well as the Lake Worth Lagoon.
Mindful Moments Yoga (Adult) – Join Manatee Lagoon for yoga classes against the beautiful calming backdrop of Lake Worth Lagoon.
Junior Aqua Lab – A series of four experimental activities that deal with some of the properties of water. Ages 9 to 14.
December Lecture Series:
Lecture: What Does the Manatee Say? – Discover the current research of FAU Ph.D. candidate Beth Brady as she explains the secrecies of the sounds of manatees!
- Want to “eavesdrop” on manatees at play and at rest?
- Listen to real communication between manatees?
- Learn how to speak manatee?
SPeCIal Operation Hours
On occasion our campus will close early for a special event or weather-related issue. During the holiday season, we have several days that require us to adjust our schedule. Please call ahead to ensure our campus is open prior to your visit. We look forward to seeing you!
Normal Operation Hours:
Monday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Tuesday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Wednesday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Thursday*: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Friday*: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sunday*: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Special Operation Hours:
Christmas Day: Sunday, Dec. 25 – (Closed on Christmas. Closing at 3 p.m. on Christmas Eve)
New Years Day: Sunday, Jan. 1 – (Closed on New Years Day. Closing at 3 p.m. New Year’s Eve)