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Birthday doings at Monterey Bay Aquarium.

Things are going swimmingly at the Monterey Bay Aquarium as it approaches its fifth birthday. Since opening in October 1984, this spectacular waterfront facility has become the premier attraction in the Monterey Bay area, receiving almost 2 million visitors a year. This month, the aquarium celebrates its first half-decade with a major new exhibit and a week of special events.

Opening October 22, Living Treasures of the Pacific brings together dazzling and intriguing creatures from all around the Pacific Ocean for a year-long stay. (In its visiting exhibitions, the aquarium is broadening its scope from its original and ongoing commitment to the immediate marine environment.)

Magnifying glasses and other visual aids will give close-up views of intricately marked tropical fish and translucent jellies from northern waters. Treasure maps will engage youngsters with riddles about the exhibit's creatures; they can check their answers by peering into a "treasure chest" to examine the animal in question. Also on view in the aquarium from October 21 through 29 are live video images from the depths of Monterey Canyon, transmitted by a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) used for research by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI). Founded in 1987 by David Packard (who also underwrote the aquarium's construction), MBARI is dedicated to studying the ecology of Monterey Bay, which is distinguished by a 2-mile-deep canyon and by the cleansing action of the California Current. The clarity of these deep-sea images puts home TV to shame.

In keeping with the birthday-party spirit, clowns, jugglers, magicians, and other entertainers will take to the street (Ocean View Boulevard, just north of the aquarium) for an outdoor fair October 28 and 29. Make-A-Circus, a participatory circus-skills group, will put on shows outside the aquarium on both afternoons, and storytellers will recount tales of the deep on Sunday afternoon.

The aquarium, at the north end of Cannery Row in Monterey, is open 10 to 6 daily. Admission is $7 for adults, $5 for students and seniors, and $3 for ages 3 through 12. For more information, call (408) 648-4888.
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Publication:Sunset
Date:Oct 1, 1989
Words:341
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