December 2017 Newsletter


Jack Lighton

Dear Friends of LMC:


On behalf of our entire team of staff, volunteers, supporters and of course our sea turtle patients, I am excited to wish everyone a happy holiday season. It is hard to believe we have made our way to the final weeks of 2017, and due to your incredible support LMC enjoyed another year of significant conservation and educational impact. Thank you!

As we make our way through the holiday season, please consider LMC’s beautiful on-campus or online store for your shopping needs. We have a lot of beautiful items that are linked to our mission. Please don’t forget also that our sea turtle adoptions and the gift of LMC’s educational programs are the ‘perfect size’ for your loved ones this holiday season.

It takes passion, grit and a multitude of resources to power our mission of sea turtle and ocean conservation. For this year’s Annual Fund campaign, we shared with our community the story of “Burt Reynolds,” a very rare olive ridley sea turtle patient who was significantly impacted by marine debris – one of the most critical of challenges to our global environment.

Burt Reynolds’ story is a message of hope, compassion and teamwork. Together and with increased education, we can turn the tide on marine debris, protecting our sea turtle populations and our world ocean and coastlines. Please take a moment to read Burt’s story and consider sharing this video on your social media or sending this to your contacts, inviting them to join our special team of ocean heroes by making a tax-deductible year-end contribution to our annual fund.

As we set our sights on year end and 2018, I would like to call your attention to several upcoming events.

LMC’s SEAsonal Celebration is fun for the whole family and out-of-town guests. The event will take place on Dec. 16 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For our friends who enjoy iconic fashion and festive locals, please consider joining us at Beach Bash Palm Beach hosted by Lilly Pulitzer to benefit Loggerhead! This year’s event theme is “Seas The Day,” which pays homage to the history of how Palm Beach got its name while tipping the hat to a perfect Palm Beach Pairing: resort wear icon Lilly Pulitzer (founded in Palm Beach) and sea turtles. After all, the Palm Beaches are among one of the world’s most important stretches of beach for sea turtle nesting. Saving sea turtles and celebrating ocean conservation has never been so fashionable. Please consider joining us at the Beach Club on Dec. 28 as we prepare to “Seas the Day!”

When reflecting on 2017 we have much to be very grateful for. Thank you for helping us expand our awareness, visibility and – most importantly – our impact. I thank you for your support and passion for our mission, and look forward to seeing you on campus soon.

Wishing you a Happy Holiday season and a healthy and prosperous 2018!

With Gratitude,

Jack E. Lighton

President & CEO


Beach bash palm beach


If you know anything about Palm Beach, you know that it all began when a Spanish ship loaded with 20,000 coconuts, the Providencia, ran aground off the Palm Beach coast in 1878.

One account of the shipwreck reads: “I was greeted… With a bottle of wine and a box of cigars… There were 20,000 coconuts, and they seemed like a godsend to the people. For several weeks, everyone was eating coconuts and drinking wine.”

Coconuts, cigars and wine? Sounds like a Palm Beach party to us. Now the ultimate Palm Beach party, Beach Bash Palm Beach, presented by resort-wear icon Lilly Pulitzer is back, benefiting the Sea Turtle Hospital at Loggerhead Marinelife Center.

On Dec. 28 from 8 p.m. to midnight, over 700 philanthropic influencers will descend upon The Beach Club on Palm Beach for this must-attend party of the year. Decked in their brightest Lilly fashion, guests will step back in time aboard the Providencia, and enjoy:

  • Lavish libations and bites
  • Exciting entertainment
  • Mixing with other notables
  • Anushka pop-up salon
  • Tito’s juice stand
  • Kendra Scott buried treasure jewelry pull
  • And so much more!

“We are thrilled to return for our second year partnering with resort-wear powerhouse Lilly Pulitzer for this amazing event,” said Jack E. Lighton, LMC president & CEO. “This event celebrates the iconic island life and style of Lilly Pulitzer while showcasing Palm Beach’s most treasured environmental assets: sea turtles, magnificent beaches and azure blue ocean waters.”

2017 sponsors include Presenting Sponsor Lilly Pulitzer; The Gardens Mall; Eau Palm Beach; PNC; Douglas Elliman Real Estate; Jupiter Medical Center Urgent Care; and Private Oceans.

Beach Bash Palm Beach tickets start at $250 per person. Visit to purchase yours today!



Fifteen years ago, LMC veterinarian Dr. Charles Manire would examine patients for signs of 
marine debris before beginning treatment. Todaywe must assume marine debris is presentthe question is how much affects a patient? Such debris often includes fishing gear and nets, microplastics, straws and cigarette litter.

“Unfortunately, marine debris is a major problem for our ocean,” says Dr. Manire. “Much of the debris, especially plastic, does not biodegrade. It breaks down into smaller pieces. The debris can impact hatchlings and adult sea turtles so much that they cannot eat or swim properly, impeding their ability to come up to the surface to breathe. A fishing line or net may even restrict blood flow to a turtle’s flippers.”

Thousands of sea turtles and other marine life are threatened by marine debris. As our ocean environment changes, nearly 100 percent of our post-hatchling patients arrive with marine debris ingestion or entanglement. Since the chances of survival for sea-turtle hatchlings are already low, this is a serious issue. That’s why we believe in educating guests and stakeholders about ocean and sea turtle conservation. We can’t do it without you.

The sea turtle tells us the health of the ocean; the ocean tells us the health of our planet.

The World Ocean:
 Covers over 70 percent of Earth’s surface
Contains the majority of life on Earth – supporting the food web that all species rely on
– Provides over 50 percent of Earth’s oxygen; every other breath all species need for survival

We all have an impact on thousands of marine animals, including the magnificent sea turtle, through our daily choices. That means our work is far from over. Will you join us?

To donate online, please go to


Save THe Date 

SEAsonal Celebration Event – Join us for our annual SEAsonal Celebration event this Saturday, Dec. 16 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Some highlights of the event this year include:

Free Responsible Wrapping Station – Guests will have the opportunity to get their gifts wrapped at no cost to them with 100 percent post-consumer materials. This helps reduce wrapping waste during the holiday season, which is good for sea turtles and good for you!

Ornament Making Station – Children will have the opportunity to make their own upcycled ornament for the holidays. These will be made from post-consumer materials and dressed up with fun, kid-friendly adornments.

Free Drawing – A free raffle drawing for all guests will be held at noon during the event featuring kid packs, sea turtle adoptions, education program certificates and more.

Gift of Marine Education – Guests will have the opportunity to purchase gift certificates for educational programs for loved ones this season. Selections include guided tours, camp sessions, birthday parties, fishing programs and more.

Seasonal Camp Open House – The north side of the Learning Center will be transformed into a camp room for the day, featuring different camp activities and games to promote our Sea Turtle Savers camp. Our Sea Turtle Savers session will give campers an opportunity to be a marine science researcher, veterinarian and marine biologist throughout the week by simulating a day in the life of LMC staff members.

And for the event only, we are offering 20 percent off registration fees for our week-long winter and spring break camps.


Knowledge is power!

Give the Gift of Marine Education this season! – ‘Tis the season for time with family and giving thanks to those who matter most in your life! This year, you can give the gift of marine education by purchasing a gift certificate for any one of LMC’s 37 programs for loved ones of all ages.

Eligible programs:

  • Private Evening Tour
  • Behind-the-Scenes Private Tour
  • Class field trip
  • Sea Turtle Savers day camps
  • Kid’s Fishing Program
  • SWIM Conservation Vacation
  • Turtle Walk & Hatchling Release programs
  • Mommy & Me Sea Turtle Painting class
  • Classroom Outreach
  • …and more!

We strive for fun.

  • We believe learning is better when concepts and experiments feel like play! We incorporate familiar games into marine science lessons for greater engagement in youth programming
  • Our staff and experienced program docents inspire excitement through positive attitudes and an inclusive approach to learning
  • We stay up-to-date and blend our educational conservation lessons using the latest youth trends and interests

We strive for excellence.

  • Using hands-on marine science tools and equipment, we incorporate practical application of knowledge and skills into our programming for aspiring scientists
  • Our K-12 programming incorporates science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics (STEAM) concepts and applications
  • All school programming is Next Generation Sunshine State Standard (NGSSS) aligned for ready-to-use classroom lesson plans and curricula

We strive to make an impact.

  • We reach more than 153,000 individuals each year through our various public, school and outreach programs
  • We design our programs to be mission-centric, bringing marine science and conservation awareness and education to both children and adults

Upon purchasing your gift certificate, you will receive a personalized copy to present just in time for the holidays. Buying for someone from a distance? We will send the personalized gift certificate and custom message to your recipient to redeem at their leisure – with no added stress on your part.

Already have someone in mind? You can purchase your gift certificate HERE>> today!


Sea Turtle Savers – Registration is now open for our winter break Sea Turtle Savers camp series! Our Sea Turtle Savers camps occur from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday for full days of guaranteed, non-stop turtle-y fun for aspiring scientists ages 6-10! Junior scientists will join LMC staff as they explore Florida’s natural areas and learn all things 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 actively-working sea turtle hospital.

2017-2018 dates include the following:

For more information and to register for the Sea Turtle Savers camp program, please visit HERE>>

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! Future CITs may find download the application HERE>>


Kid’s Fishing Program – Do you know an aspiring young angler? Join us for a Kid’s Fishing Program at the Juno Beach Pier! Kid’s Fishing Programs are held each Saturday from 9-11 a.m. and teach anglers 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 visit our event calendar HERE>> and select the date for which you’d like to register. Space is limited to 10 anglers. Ages 8+.


Astronomy Nights at Loggerhead – Hurricane season is over and the skies look clear for our Astronomy Nights program! Join us each month to enjoy a presentation on the highlights of this month’s night sky in partnership with the Astronomical Society of the Palm Beaches. After a brief presentation on what you will “scope out,” you’ll head down to high-powered telescopes to see it for yourself. Astronomy Nights takes place at LMC with a different topic each session. From the Pleidedes to Andromeda, the night sky is always changing, which means no program is the same! No pre-registration required. Cost: $10/adult; $5/child. To learn more about Astronomy Nights click HERE>>


Eco-Adventure Series 2018 dates announced! – Making a New Year’s resolution to get outside more in 2018? Join us on any of our 2018 Eco-Adventure Series program and explore the beautiful coastal ecosystems of Florida. From sunset, illuminating kayak tours to sea turtle discovery programs, these monthly programs are sure to introduce a new side of wild Florida! For more information, visit

Conservation Corner

Halloween Candy Wrapper Recycling – For the second year in a row, LMC’s conservation department has partnered with Palm Beach County teachers to collect and recycle Halloween candy wrappers with Terracycle. Sixteen local classrooms participated this year and collected over 120 pounds of wrappers. The collected wrappers will be recycled and used to make school supplies and other repurposed materials.
Conservation Department Volunteers Needed – LMC’s conservation department is currently seeking volunteers to assist staff in ongoing projects focused on ocean conservation and pollution prevention. Tasks include marine debris monitoring and sorting, data collection and entry and other ongoing projects. To apply, please visit our website at




Sea turtle season is officially over…or is it? The nesting season runs from March through October; however, we still have two nests incubating on our beaches. These nests, laid 28 days apart, were deposited in late September and late October by a “loggerhead” turtle. We predict that these eggs were laid by a loggerhead/hawksbill hybrid. We cannot confirm this until the nest hatches and we conduct genetic analyses on the hatchlings. However, due to the late timing of the nests, we predict that this was indeed a hybrid.

We are guessing that the two nests were laid by the same individual, and that one of her clutches (likely laid somewhere else in-between that 28-day span) was laid on a beach that LMC does not monitor. Hawksbill turtles in the Caribbean have a later nesting season than Florida turtles, which explains this late nest. We are predicting that these nests won’t hatch until late December or early January. To compare, leatherback turtles tend to start nesting in late February/early March. This means that the sea turtle season at Loggerhead Marinelife Center is year round! WOW! What is very interesting about sea turtle hybrids is that their offspring and their offspring’s offspring (grandchildren) are viable and capable of reproduction. Oftentimes in the animal kingdom, hybrids are sterile and are incapable of reproduction.

what’s new in Rehab?

Multiple rehabilitation staff members attended the 2017 Florida Keys Sea Turtle Workshop earlier this month. The LMC staff was busy while they attended the workshop. Dr. Manire presented on  “Caudal Carapace Trauma Case Studies.” It was a review of several very interesting cases we have had at LMC, including our current patient Le Fou. Our rehabilitation technician, Ashley Isaac, presented on a review from our second olive ridley patient. Her title was, “What Did We Learn the Second Time: An Olive Ridley Case Study.” This case study was important because there have only been five olive ridley strandings ever reported in Florida. Hospital Coordinator Nicole Montgomery taught the “Blood Lab” with Dr. Nicole Stacy of the University of Florida. The lab was a comprehensive review of blood collection, sample handling and processing, cell morphology and blood smear interpretation. All presentations were well received by the sea turtle rehab community.

The hospital is in need of a few key items this holiday season. If you are in the giving spirit and would like to donate a few items, here is what is in immediate need:

  • Paper towels
  • Hand soap
  • Dish soap
  • Bleach (concentrated, do not get the splashless version)
  • Scotch Brite heavy duty scour pads (without the sponge)
  • Laundry detergent (any brand free and clear)


For the month of October, we recognize Scott Pittenger as volunteer of the month! Scott started volunteering at LMC in October 2016. Since that time, the Juno Beach Pier has been his second home. Scott volunteers on Monday mornings and Friday afternoons. He is passionate about educating guests, promoting conservation initiatives, taking photos of families and enjoying what he calls “a million dollar view” from the pier. Scott is one of the most reliable individuals that we have on the Juno Beach Pier. This year alone, he has spent over 200 hours volunteering at LMC. Thank you Scott for all that you do! 

 MASCOT CORNER: Naughty or Nice

Hello Friends, Fletch here, the lovable and huggable Loggerhead Marinelife Center mascot. It’s that time of year to check my “Naughty or Nice” list. It was easy to make this year’s “Nice List.” All you had to do was help keep my ocean home “Clean and Blue, Trash Free,” by following my 4 R’s and a C:

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 ocean, don’t trash it, and

Clean Up the ocean where others have trashed it


What list did you make?  

So, at this time of holiday spirits, I wish all of you a safe and joyous holiday season and a prosperous new year. For 2018, let us renew our commitment: to keep my ocean home “Clean and Blue, Trash Free.”  


Support Sea Turtle Conservation!

Adoption Spotlight Go blue this holiday season by gifting symbolic sea turtle adoptions to your loved ones! Featuring a photo and personalized certificate, a sea turtle adoption is a unique and meaningful gift that connects your friends and family with the ocean during and beyond the holiday season. Additionally, any adoption ordered from Dec. 1 through the end of 2017 will include a special “season’s greetings” card featuring our lovable mascot, Fletch. Holiday adoptions must be made by Dec. 17 to ensure Christmas delivery. Learn more at



Gift Store – Shop at our gift store for every turtle lover on your list! Our online store is offering 20 percent off until Dec. 17 and FREE shipping on Friday, Dec. 15. All orders on or before Dec. 17 are guaranteed to arrive before Christmas.

Vendor Spotlight – Green Toys, Inc.

Vendor: Green Toys, Inc. (Represented by Cameron Passmore)
Gift Store Item:
Sustainable, recycled toys
Location: Sausalito, Calif.
Dream Superpower: At this time of year? The power of extra hours in the day! It feels like we are just behind the North Pole in demand right now…

How was Green Toys founded? What was the inspiration?

Green Toys was started by our co-founders’ desire to create better products for children and families. Our mission has always been to provide the best products possible. For us, that means using the safest materials that are also the most environmentally friendly. We strive to give parents an alternative to the all-too-common wasteland of short-lived, discarded toys that often fill up a playroom.

What was the initial response to the toys?

We’ve been fortunate to have always had a really supportive, loyal core customer base. Initially, the eco-friendly nature of our products was what drew our most engaged and vocal supporters. Over time, we’ve seen our community grow and diversify. Some people are most interested in the fact that our products are made in the USA. Others really appreciate how invested we are in safety – in both materials and design. Still others find our commitment to child development most compelling. And of course, there are still those eco-friendly consumers who seek us our for our use of 100 percent recycled plastic in our toys (and now organic flour in our dough!).

Tell us about your product and what separates it from similar products?

We have pioneered the use of environmentally friendly materials in children’s products. Our toys are made from 100 percent recycled plastic, the primary source of which is curbside collected milk jugs (HDPE). This material is both food and dishwasher safe, as well as super durable. We use no plasticizers or additives, and the plastic contains no BPA, phthalates, or PVC. We also use mineral-based colors that are mixed in during manufacturing, which means there are no external coatings, paints or dyes that can chip or leech. Safety is our number one priority, and we go above and beyond to make sure that we are delivering the safest products possible. Outside of our materials, we work with independent child development experts during our product design to make sure that our products are supporting and encouraging developmental milestones.

How is your business sustainable, and what is the benefit of buying “Made in USA” or even 100 percent recycled materials?

We are proud to use recycled plastic to make our toys. In fact, we have recycled over 50 million milk jugs to date! Plus, because our toys contain no metal or screws, they can also be recycled at the end of use. As far as buying “Made in USA” – we think the benefits here speak for themselves. Our whole line is made in the USA, and the vast majority is done less than an hour away from our corporate office. This means that we (and, in turn, our consumers) are supporting both the domestic economy at large, and our local economy in particular. It also means that we are able to work extremely closely with our manufacturing partners, knowing exactly how our products are produced, and under what conditions, as California has some of the most stringent requirements of any state. This allows our consumers to have peace of mind, knowing that they are getting quality, durable, safe products that are built to last.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve heard when it comes to chasing your dreams?

Don’t be afraid to ask for help! Most worthwhile endeavors truly do take a village, and often, the vision only gets stronger and clearer with more hands helping it along.

What do you love about your work?

We truly believe in the mission of the company and the products we’re creating. At the same time, we’re always striving to be better. Constantly staying on the edge of pride in where we are and a commitment to push further is a challenging balance to maintain, but also the most fulfilling. We wouldn’t have it any other way!

Where do you find ideas for the toys?

Ideas come in all shapes and sizes. We look at gaps in the overall toy market, to what an individual child needs for development – and everything in between. We also have a rock star products team that is constantly researching, iterating, and dreaming up the next great idea. Finally, we’re fortunate to have a very passionate, vocal community that isn’t shy about sharing what they’d like to see from us!




Thank you to The Honda Classic Cares Foundation for choosing LMC as one of its philanthropic partners at the inaugural Bear Trap Bash Halloween Costume Party. The event, which replicated the energy of the famed Bear Trap at The Honda Classic, raised awareness for philanthropy in Palm Beach County and raised over $3,000 for LMC.

Special thanks to our Blue Friends Society December beach clean-up sponsor, Kirstin and Telby Turner – RBC Wealth Management. 

Thank you to Clarke for selecting LMC as the One for Tomorrow donation recipient for 2017, resulting in a contribution of $23,000 to support LMC’s research and education departments and annual fund. Clarke also hosted the “Lager for Loggerhead” event at Twisted Trunk Brewing, where LMC supporters and Clarke staff came together to celebrate and raise an additional $2,000 for LMC. 



Thank you to FPL for hosting LMC staff at the FPL Nonprofit Showcase. FPL invited local nonprofits to their Juno Beach campus to interact with employees to encourage engagement in FPL’s employee giving campaign. LMC receives nearly $10,000 annually as a result of this program and of the generosity of FPL’s employees. 
Special thanks to The Breakers for coming out and volunteering at our facility. We are grateful for all you do!



It is Manatee Season! Have you ever visited Manatee Lagoon – An FPL Eco-Discovery Center? We are very thankful to have this wonderful partner in conservation here in the Palm Beaches! During your visit, you’ll learn about manatee and ocean conservation. While attending the center, you may see a few manatees in the lagoon and learn about how manatees play an integral role in the overall health of Florida’s ecosystems.

We encourage you to take the time to spread information about the gentle sea cow, especially if you live in South Florida or a place where manatees congregate during manatee season. 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.

LMC is grateful to partner with Manatee Lagoon, which features a multifunctional educational center, a manatee webcam, two levels of observation areas and so much more. We are 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. Pre-registration is required for events.

December Activities 

Manatee Lagoon Tour – 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.

Manatee Tales Story Time – Listen as a Manatee Master storyteller reads colorful books about aquatic species that live in Lake Worth Lagoon. Children ages 2 to 5 are welcome.

Junior Aqua Lab – A series of four experimental activities that deal with some of the properties of water. Ages 9 to 14.

Children’s Art Class – Every Saturday express your creativity with a different art theme each week.