Ocean fair to celebrate year of the reef

The 11th Annual Kaua‘i Family Ocean Fair will be held at Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge (Kilauea Lighthouse) on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

There is no charge to attend.

The fair, which promotes learning about the marine environment, is an opportunity to interest keiki in the natural environment. The theme will be International Year of the Reef and features popular Hawai‘i artist and author Patrick Ching and Kaua‘i geologist and author Rob Siemers.

Former Kaua‘i resident Ching will be conducting free drawing classes on marine critters. Siemers, co-author of Kaua‘i’s Geologic History and author of Kaua‘i Island Atlas and Map, will be present with an educational display and for autographs.

This is one of Kaua‘i’s largest ocean education events where all exhibitors will be providing a free kid’s activity or interactive exhibit. Fair goers will be able to learn about reefs, seabirds, Hawaiian monk seals, sea turtles, whales, Kaua‘i’s underwater geology and boating safety. Activities include operating an underwater robot, making gyotaku (fish) prints, creating art out of ocean debris, conducting a mock reef transect, making and wearing “reef hats” and knot tying.

Special materials will be available for educators, including a new U.S. Coral Reef Task Force DVD, fish poster, and other resources. NOAA’s Navigating Change Curriculum will also be featured.

The fair is co-sponsored by NOAA’s Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge, and Kilauea Point Natural History Association.

Free public parking will be at Kauai Christian Academy with free shuttle buses to the refuge and fair. Car access to the refuge will be restricted.

In addition to the sponsors, the exhibitors include: National Weather Service, Central Pacific Hurricane Center, Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument, NOAA/DLNR Hawaiian Monk Seal Conservation Hui, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, Waimea High School ROV Club, Kauai Public Land Trust, Malama Maha‘ulepu and ReefCheck.

Savage Shrimp lunchwagon will be at the fair in a designated picnic area.

For more information, contact the Kauai sanctuary office at 246-2860.


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