Port Townsend Marine Science Center

Octopress Online
September 2018

The aquarium and dock get a much-needed break from smoke and clouds as we slide out of August and into the fall. photo by Brian Kay


Sunday, September 2 

1 - 7 p.m. 


$95 per person 
($75 members of the Marine Science Center)

The Marine Science Center offers one 6-hour sailing adventure each year to see Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge aboard the 133' historic schooner, Adventuress.

On this cruise, you can help the crew sail this historic vessel while enjoying a leisurely tour to the wildlife sanctuary.

As on all our cruises, Port Townsend Marine Science Center Naturalist Roger Risley, will be onboard to assist in wildlife spotting and interpretation.

The sail departs at 1pm on September 2 from the Northwest Maritime Center dock at the north end of Water St. in Port Townsend, and returns to the dock at 7 pm.

Contact Gabriele Sanchez at gsanchez@ptmsc.org or 360-385-5582 x120for more info

Former PTMSC volunteer and Anne Murphy Scholarship recipient Eliza Dawson

Supporters Meet Challenge Match for Ocean Plastics Education

This summer seven generous individuals pooled together their funds to create a $5,000 challenge match. Fifty-one individuals doubled their money by meeting the match and then some. A grand total of $12,940 was raised to continue education about ocean plastics at the Marine Science Center.

The theme of the campaign was celebrating people who, like you, are raising awareness and taking action to stem the tide of ocean plastic pollution.

These funds will support programs that reach many thousands of people each year. Here are examples:

  • Classes to educate students about how to eliminate or reduce plastic consumption and pollution.
  • Exhibits on how to reduce plastic use and effect change.
  • Two annual beach clean-ups that are coordinated with global efforts.
  • Toxic-Free Zone workshops.

Remember, even the largest waves begin as tiny ripples, and together we will stem the tide of ocean plastic pollution. Your efforts, expressed through your actions and support for the PTMSC, are combining with those of countless concerned citizens throughout our country – and around the globe – who are working to effect change now.

Thank you again for your determined and enthusiastic support.


September 7, 8 & 9

Join us this year at the PT Wooden Boat Festival as we explore the Salish Sea. Journey into our walk-through model kelp forest, discover tiny plankton under a microscope, and learn how to identify the marine mammals you might encounter when you are out on the water.

We'll be located adjacent to the Dept. of Fish and Wildlife building every day of the festival from 10am to 4pm.

Learn more about the Wooden Boat Festival here.


Saturday, September 15

Noon - 4pm

Volunteers from around the world will work together to keep our oceans and the life in them as healthy and diverse as possible.
Be a part of the WA CoastSavers and Port Townsend Marine Science Center’s Beach Clean-up.

Support for this year's clean up comes from Howell's Sandwich Co. in downtown Port Townsend, offering 15% off discount cards to all our beach clean-up volunteers.

Registration is available at: www.coastsavers.org


Thanks to Olympic Disposal and Howell's Sandwich Co. for their support!

White-winged Scoter
image by Doug Schurman


Go birding and make a difference!

This just in from Seattle Audubon for a winter Citizen Science project. Several of our PTMSC volunteers take part in this monthly survey. Training opportunities and surveys take place around Puget Sound.

Learn more about the project, including training dates, at www.seabirdsurvey.org, and email Toby Ross, Senior Science Manager (tobyr@seattleaudubon.org) if you would like more information or to take part.

3-Day San Juan Islands
Birdwatching & Wildlife Cruise

October 1-3

Join Puget Sound Express for exciting 3 day cruises through the San Juan Islands in Washington State. Selected by National Geographic as one of the World’s Top 3 destinations, the waters around the San Juan Islands are home to orcas (killer whales), minke whales, gray whales, humpback whales, Steller sea lions, porpoise, otters, and a dizzying array of seabirds.

Spend days on the comfortable 70-seat Glacier Spirit, and evenings in luxury at Earthbox Inn & Spa (May) and Roche Harbor Resort (Oct) on San Juan Island.


Save the Dates!

We’re putting together the finishing touches for our 2018/2019 Future of Oceans Lecture Series and we have an exciting lineup so far. Check out the dates and speakers below to save the dates on your calendar. Keep reading your Octopress in the months ahead as we get more details on lecture topics, etc.


October 14, 2018
Charlie Eriksen

UW physical oceanographer
read bio here
Lecture title TBA

November 11, 2018
Bob Steelquist

Pacific Northwest writer, photographer, naturalist, and environmental educator
read bio here
Lecture title TBA

December 9, 2018
Florian Graner

marine biologist and documentarian, Sealife Productions
read current work vitae here
Lecture: “The Octopus Learning Project”

January 13, 2019
Jan Newton

senior principal oceanographer, Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington
read bio here
Lecture title TBA

February 10, 2019
Bob Boekelheide

naturalist, former director of Dungeness River Audubon Center
read more here
Lecture: “Seabirds and Marine Mammals of the Protection Island Aquatic Reserve”



PTMSC Octopus and Orca donor circle members get FREE admission to all lecture series events?

You can too!

Join us today at the $250 level or higher and get into our lectures for FREE!
Not only that, but Orca donor circle members are invited to private receptions with our guest lecturers!

Stubby rose anenome photo by Wendy Feltham


A history of local plastic bans

In August, we posted a story on our blog about how local communities and Seattle-based corporations are taking action to combat pollution from consumer plastics.

"Closer to home, Port Angeles banned plastic carry-out bags in April 2018. It joins a list of 16 cities and two counties in Washington State with a plastic bag ban. And the Kitsap Sun reported that Kitsap could soon become the third Washington county to enact a ban."

Learn more--click the link below.

Summer Camp 2018

PTMSC summer camp assistant Ellie Kravets recaps this year's round of youth camps: "It's been a whirlwind of a summer, and - after 11 camp sessions and over 100 campers - there's a ton of stories to share."

Read the story, which is full of great photos of kids getting inspired by the Salish Sea!

Farewell, AmeriCorps

Our AmeriCorps play a major role in the vitality and mission of PTMSC, so it's always sad to see them go when their term of service ends every August. 

James Swanson is no exception--in this blog post he reveals the three most fascinating things he learned during his tenure as Aquarium Educator. He begins by declaring "I didn’t even know what the Salish Sea was until I moved out here."

Read his reflection in this blog post. James, we wish you and all the outgoing AmeriCorps volunteers best wishes for the future.


at Fort Worden

October 7-12


Enjoy an immersive week of arts, lectures, music, local cuisine and more this Fall at Fortopia, a program for adults, carefully curated to showcase the very best of the Olympic Peninsula.

TO LEARN MORE, VISIT: fortopia2018.org



12 to 5 pm


Contact Us

Port Townsend Marine Science Center
532 Battery Way

Port Townsend, Washington 98368
(360) 385-5582

Manage Subscription