Earth Day is observed each year on April 22nd, but Heal the Bay and its Santa Monica Pier Aquarium will continue that celebration on Saturday, April 26th, with a beach cleanup, sandcastle contests and a day chock full of special Aquarium activities for the whole family.
The celebration begins with the monthly “Nothin’ But Sand” beach cleanup from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on the north side of the Santa Monica Pier. Just down the beach from the cleanup, Heal the Bay's Sandcastle Contest- featuring the creations of architectural firms, design shops, entertainment studios, other businesses and civic groups - runs from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Inspired visitors will be invited to build their own sand sculptures from noon to 2 p.m. in a smaller scale contest run by the Aquarium staff and sponsored by Time Warner Cable's Connect a Million Minds initiative. While cleaning the beach to help keep the ocean healthy is its own reward, anyone who participates on April 26th will also be compensated with free admission to the Aquarium that day, when the marine science center will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The marine science center plans include scavenger hunts, face painting and craft stations set up to create take-home fish pendants and flowerpots. Underwater photographer and author Richard Salas will share some of his favorite images of marine life and tell stories of how he captured his subjects on film at 2 p.m. in the Aquarium’s Dorothy Green Room.
Heal the Bay celebrates not only Earth Day, but Earth Month!