In the season of giving thanks, Maui Ocean Center shows appreciation with a "Wave of Gratitude." Throughout November, all general admission online bookings will receive an additional 5 percent discount, and with valid ID, each kama'aina family or U.S. police, fire, lifeguard and EMT personnel will receive a complimentary reusable Maui Ocean Center logo bag.
Throughout the month, daily naturalist presentations will be enhanced to include information on the cultural significance of certain marine animals and the reasons we are thankful for them. In addition to these presentations, guests can enjoy several activities with aquarium admission, including children's crafts, up close turtle encounters, and the popular Chef Diver presentations, which are offered exclusively in November.
Fins and Flippers Tour Upgrade, Tuesdays
This month's promotions include the Fins and Flippers Tour Upgrade, which will be offered Tuesdays; Nov. 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29 at 11:30 a.m. for $10 per person plus admission. Guided by an ocean naturalist, guests will discover fascinating facts about sharks and turtles, tour behind-the-scenes at the aquarium and participate in a supervised feed of marine animals at Hammerhead Harbor and Turtle Lagoon. To make a reservation, call (808) 270-7088.
Chef Diver, Thursdays
Guests can learn about the fascinating feeding habits and nutritional needs of sharks and other marine animals during Chef Diver's presentation on Thursdays; Nov. 3, 10, 17 and 24 at 1 p.m. at Hammerhead Harbor. Chef Diver will also discuss the different types of foods eaten by the sharks, rays and fish while demonstrating how the Aquarium's curatorial team prepares the different foods such as clams, fish and squid. This activity is complimentary with aquarium admission.
Turtle-rrific Thursday, Nov. 17
Guests can learn about Hawai'i's beloved green sea turtles in an up close and personal setting during Turtle-rrific Thursday on Nov. 17. Beginning at 2 p.m., this interactive program is hosted by Maui Ocean Center's curatorial team at the Turtle Lagoon. Guests will learn about the biology, behavior and diet of green sea turtles from the team that cares for the animals on a daily basis. This activity is complimentary with aquarium admission and appropriate for all ages.
Hangin' with Honu
Visitors will have another opportunity to learn about green sea turtles during Hangin' with Honu on Friday, Nov. 25. A special guest speaker, accompanied by a green sea turtle, will host casual turtle talks at the Turtle Lagoon from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The story behind the turtles at Maui Ocean Center along with interesting green sea turtle facts will be discussed. This activity is complimentary with aquarium admission and appropriate for all ages.
Throughout the month, the aquarium will host a variety of exciting children's activities that are complimentary with paid admission. On Saturdays, children are invited to an exciting story and craft hour beginning at 11:30 a.m. in the Hawaiians and the Sea Exhibit. On Nov.21, 25 and 27, a booth for children to make ocean-themed crafts will be available in the Marine Mammal Discovery Center from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Children's activities are supervised by the aquarium's education team and are appropriate for ages 3 through 12.
Thanksgiving Lunch at Seascape Ma'alaea Restaurant
On Thursday, Nov. 24, the aquarium's award-winning oceanview Seascape Ma'alaea Restaurant will offer a delectable Thanksgiving lunch featuring two entrees: Slow Roasted Turkey with Sausage Stuffing and Giblet Gravy served with Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Sauted Asparagus and Acorn Squash for $14.95; and Rosemary Shrimp Skewers and Fresh Catch combo with Champagne Cream Sauce, served with Basmati Wild Rice Blend and a Vegetable Medley for $15.95. The mouthwatering appetizer, a Butternut Squash Ravioli with Brown Butter glaze, drizzled with Balsamic Reduction, is $8.95. Dessert is a traditional Pumpkin Pie for $3.95 a slice. Prices are plus tax.
Seascape Ma'alaea Restaurant is open daily, including Thanksgiving Day, from 11 a.m to 2:30 p.m. Reservations are optional by calling (808) 270-7068. Admission is not required to dine in the restaurant; restaurant-only entry is located on the side of the aquarium.
The mission of Maui Ocean Center is to foster understanding, wonder and respect for Hawaii's marine life. This state-of-the-art aquarium was named "Top-Rated Attraction in Hawai'i" by "Zagat Survey US Family Travel Guide," "Leader In Responsible Tourism" on the Top 100 Blue List by "Islands Magazine," and "Best Environmental Attraction" by the readers of "The Maui News." Open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. in July and August.