ocean_fun_days_microscopeFamily Oriented Event Expecting Record Crowds for 2013 

Sandy Hook, NJ - Ocean Fun Days will offer two days of free, family-oriented activities with an environmental and educational focus at Island Beach State Park on Saturday June 8th and Sandy Hook on Sunday June 9th.  For the tenth consecutive year, this popular pre-summer event will feature eco-friendly hands-on programs and special activities that help explore and celebrate the wonders of the Jersey Shore.  Drag a seine net, go on a guided beach hike, learn about seaside birds and much more at Ocean Fun Days. Both Ocean Fun Day locations were hard hit by Hurricane Sandy but have been restored and recently reopened to the public.  As a result, event organizers are expecting record crowds this year.

            Ocean Fun Days is presented by New Jersey Natural Gas through its Conserve to Preserve Foundation, in partnership with the New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium (NJSGC), the Asbury Park Press, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). 

            Each day will include dozens of exhibitors, displays and demonstrations that promote natural resources and energy conservation and offer eco-tours, and fun activities for children showcasing the beaches and bays of the Jersey Shore.  New Jersey Natural Gas will also have information on hand about valuable rebates and incentives for equipment replacement for Superstorm Sandy victims.       

            Both locations will feature an energy-saver’s scavenger hunt and all children that complete the hunt will receive a prize. Superstorm Sandy and building for a more resilient and energy efficient future will be the theme for this year’s Ocean Fun Days Science Fair.  Student scientists from Monmouth and Ocean counties will be present to explain their projects to the public.

            This year, the Sandy Hook event based at the NJSGC headquarters in Fort Hancock will welcome back by popular demand, the NOAA/James J. Howard Marine Fisheries Lab Open House.  The Lab will open its doors to the public for tours and the opportunity to meet NOAA lab scientists.

The student recipients of the NJSGC Stew Tweed Fisheries and Aquaculture Scholarships will also be announced and presented by Congressman Frank Pallone during a special ceremony at the Sandy Hook event.  The scholarships were established in 2007 by NJSGC to honor the memory of Stewart Tweed who served as a Marine Agent for the New Jersey Sea Grant Extension Service between 1978 and 2005.

The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium is an affiliation of colleges, universities and other groups dedicated to advancing knowledge and stewardship of New Jersey’s marine and coastal environment.  NJSGC meets its mission through its innovative research, education and outreach programs. For more information, visit NJSGC on the web at njseagrant.org or on social media at facebook.com/NJSeaGrant and twitter.com/NJSeaGrant