The Oregon Coast Aquarium (OCAq) is thrilled to announce that its new natural playground, outdoor amphitheater, spring, and renovated lobby are now open to the public.
These projects constitute the first phase of the OCAq’s multi-phase fundraising campaign.
“We’ve been anticipating this for years,” said OCAq President and CEO Carrie Lewis. “We’re excited to bring these new experiences to our customers, and are very grateful for the support we’ve received along the way.”
The nature playground is a testament to the OCAq’s historic origins as a former sawmill site, where visitors can climb massive logs, explore a faux eagle’s nest, climb a watchtower and snorkel down a winding slide that acts like a fake river chute.
The outdoor amphitheater is a dedicated space for educational programs and animal ambassador presentations, providing guests with up-close views of Oregon’s native species and opportunities to engage with animal caretakers and educators.
The headwaters feature includes a recirculating flow representing the relationship between watersheds and the ocean, highlighting the importance of headwaters and the role they play in Oregon’s coastal ecosystems.
The renovated lobby offers views of the picturesque estuary bordering the OCAq and streamlines pedestrian traffic by giving guests a direct route to the center of the Aquarium. Lobby renovations include upgrades to the existing cafe and the addition of a moon jelly exhibit, which will be completed this summer.
“These additions have a huge impact on our customers,” Lewis said. “These are more than just attractions – they are experiences, they are places where families create memories, where inspiration is sparked and a love of nature is encouraged.”
The Aquarium has engaged Dangermond Keane Architecture, Andersen Construction and Walker Macy to complete the design, construction and landscaping for this phase of the fundraising campaign.
Completion of Phase 1 is due to contributions from major donors including the Roundhouse Foundation, Starker Forests, Inc., Sunderland Foundation, Marcia H. Randall Foundation, Miller Family Holdings, Jeanette Bertea Hennings Foundation, DOJ Murdock Charitable Trust, the Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund, Ray Hickey Foundation, Oregon Community Foundation, Rose Tucker Charitable Trust and Oregon Forest Resources Institute.
Source: Oregon Coast Aquarium