Latest News from Pine Knoll Shores

Bring the tots for Toddler Time

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

Bring your little ones to theNCA-PKS toddler time with shark puppet Aquarium for a special time together enjoying stories, crafts, songs, puppets and animal encounters.

Toddler Time begins Oct. 7, and runs on Wednesdays from 9:30–10:20 a.m. and 10:30–11:20 a.m. Activities in Clearwater Classroom focus on a different animal each week. October’s celebrities include box turtles, fish, octopuses and salamanders.

Toddler Time runs weekly through March 30, except no program Nov. 25 and Dec. 23. A Halloween event for ages 5 and under takes its place the morning of Oct. 28.

Toddler Time is free with admission and registration is not required.

25th Annual Surf Fishing Workshop Oct. 16-18

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Monday, August 24th, 2015

Register now! Make your fishing wishes come true with the annual Surf Fishing Workshop weekend, Oct. 16–18, 2015. Expert instruction and hands-on experience are the trademarks of this popular seminar, now in its 25th year. Instruction covers rods, reels, weights, line, tackle, knots, bait, fish identification, catch and release, cast netting, reading the surf, locating fish from the beach and caring for your catch.

The course gets beginners off to a great start and is an excellent refresher for all skill levels. The action culminates with a fishing trip to Cape Lookout National Seashore, or another location if the Cape is inaccessible. The cost is $150 per person, discounted 10 percent for Aquarium members. Advance registration is required and can be accomplished by phone or register online.

If you want a head-start, Fishing Fanatics, a short course on surf fishing, is offered on Friday mornings. Advance registration for the weekly programs also is a must.

The workshop and Fishing Fanatics are sponsored by the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament.

Labor Day and other fall fun at NC Aquarium

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Sunday, August 23rd, 2015

nca-pks seahorses 5x4 100Make the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores part of your Labor Day weekend send-off to summer. The Aquarium is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 7, and throughout the rest of the holiday weekend.

Enjoy live animal programs, creature encounters, classroom crafts and activities, dive programs and bird shows, free with admission. To enhance your visit, sign the family up for an outdoor adventure or an indoor tour. Plan ahead — additional fees and advance registration are required for these programs. The summer schedule ends with the Sept. 7 activities. The fall line-up still includes plenty of fall fun with activities that emphasize the gorgeous fall weather and Aquarium tours that highlight behind-the-scenes animal care.

Bird’s-Eye View, featuring native raptors and waterbirds and colorful sun conures, continues twice daily in Big Rock Theater, free of charge through Sept. 13.

Aquarium celebrates vulture virtues Sept. 5 & 6

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Saturday, August 22nd, 2015

 The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores wants to help vultures out with their image problem, and also wants to spread the word about the dangers threatening these big birds worldwide.

The Aquarium joins in an International Vulture Awareness celebration Sept. 5–6. The effort is aimed at illuminating vultures’ essential role in the ecosystem as part of nature’s clean-up crew. Their consumption of carrion may sound unappealing, but it helps prevent the spread of many diseases. As with other wildlife, a range of threats imperil these intelligent animals around the globe. Some of their woes include lead poisoning from bullets in carcasses left by hunters, toxicity from drugs used in livestock in some countries, being killed as pests, and the lingering effects of the pesticide DDT on eggshell strength.

At the Aquarium, find out how you can help vultures while you experience close-up encounters with live vultures, make a craft vulture to take home and participate in interactive activities in Discovery Classroom, get a feel for vulture anatomy by touching wings, feet and other biofacts, and enjoy other programs about vultures.

Native black vultures and turkey vultures are popular stars of Birds’s-Eye View. The twice-daily show featuring these birds and other native raptors and shorebirds is free with admission. Vulture Awareness Day activities also are free with admission or membership.

NC Aquarium Homeschool Day Sept. 10

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Friday, August 21st, 2015

w NCA-PKS breakfast-with-rays printThe North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores invites homeschool families to enjoy a day of educational programs and activities on Homeschool Day, Sept. 10. Registration begins at 9 a.m.

This year’s theme is “The Ocean and You.” The event features the Shark Survivor Program, in which students explore the challenges sharks face in the wild.

Behind-the-scenes tours are discounted to $4 per person for homeschool families and are scheduled for 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Advance registration earlier in the day is required, tours are limited to 15 people and children must be at least five years old to participate.

Aquarium admission and Homeschool Day activities, except the behind-the-scenes tours, are free for homeschool families. The Aquarium’s annual Homeschool Day is a special event in addition to the one free admission per year allowed for homeschool families.


NC Aquarium embraces octopus awareness Oct. 8

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores,Uncategorized on Thursday, August 20th, 2015

NCA-PKS Octopus 2The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores honors the octopus and other tentacled creatures of its class on Cephalopod Awareness Day, Oct. 8. The celebration features crafts, games, displays, creature connection programs and other activities focused on these intelligent invertebrates.

Celphalopods, related to snails, slugs and clams, are  characterized by well-developed eyes and arms or tentacles with suckers. This group of marine mollusks includes squid, octopus and nautilus. The word cephalopod is from the combination of the Greek kefale and pous, roughly meaning head feet.

The Octopus News Magazine Online established Cephalopod Awareness Day in 2007. Though the event isn’t backed by any official governing body, Cephalopod Awareness Day is celebrated by many organizations as a way to draw attention to the diversity, conservation and biology of the world’s cephalopods. Oct. 8 was chosen to highlight the emphasis on animals with 8 or 10 appendages.

At the Aquarium, an Atlantic octopus lives in the Cave Dwellers exhibit, across from the Living Shipwreck. Cephalopod Awareness Day activities are free with admission or membership.

Venom – See Beyond the Danger exhibit open

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Monday, August 17th, 2015

w NCA-PKS Asian forest scorpionVenom — See Beyond the Danger offers a different perspective on some of nature’s feared creatures. The world is full of species that defend themselves through toxins delivered by bite, sting or touch. Some of these substances hold promise for medical treatments of human ailments.

Look for a dozen new displays of venomous and poisonous insects, reptiles, fish and other creatures interspersed throughout the Aquarium under this theme. Some of the unlikely stars are native to North Carolina. Others, such as the formidable Asian forest scorpion, are distant cousins to variations found in the state.

Venom also incorporates the outdoor walk-through Hidden Inhabitants snake exhibit on the Marsh Boardwalk that is expanding to showcase all but one of North Carolina’s native venomous snakes. Beautiful Invaders, the lionfish display in the Ocean Gallery, is in the Venom lineup, too, as well as the stingray touch pool.

Learn more about the difference between poisonous and venomous, the research underway on using toxins to human advantage, the value of these creatures to their ecosystems and how to live in harmony with them by understanding their habits and habitats. Venom — See Beyond the Danger is free with admission or membership.


Colorful cast soars in Bird’s-Eye View through Sept. 13

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores,Uncategorized on Sunday, August 16th, 2015

nca-pks conures with namesTake your visit to new heights with a twice-daily bird show, Bird’s-Eye View, free with admission through Sept. 13. In addition to owls, pelicans and other raptors and water birds found in  North Carolina, three sun conures take to the air in Big Rock Theater during the program, daily at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

These South American natives are related to the extinct Carolina parakeet. The Aquarium’s Facebook followers helped choose fitting names for the brightly colored birds — Kiwi, Papaya and Mango.

Some of the birds that waddle, swoop or soar through their parts in the program have injuries that prevent their release. Others were captive-bred or otherwise imprinted by human interaction so they lack survival skills needed in the wild.

The sight of birds in flight and rare close encounters with these feathered creatures provide a fun family experience. The program also delivers conservation messages by pointing out simple actions everyone can take to help these birds and their wild cousins.

Thrills and gills at NC Aquarium Trick or Treating Oct. 28-29

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Friday, August 14th, 2015

pumpkin logoThe North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores offers a bewitching evening of sweets and treats with the annual Trick or Treat Under the Sea, aka TOTUS, on the evenings of Wednesday, Oct. 28 and Thursday, Oct. 29.

Trick-or-treating headlines each night, as little ghosts, goblins, creatures and characters load up on goodies at decorated booths sponsored by local businesses. Also on the fun agenda: underwater pumpkin carving demonstrations, otters playing with jack o’ lanterns, face-painting and other Halloween hi-jinks with an aquatic twist.

Ticket sales at the door are 4:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. each night. Daily admission tickets, receipts and passes do not apply for this special event. Regular admission ends at 1 p.m. each day of the event.

Preschool Pumpkin Patch Oct. 28 a treat for little ones

News Article From: Pine Knoll Shores on Thursday, August 13th, 2015

w nca-pks toddler pumpkinpatchEnjoy a pumpkin photo-op and other fall fun and games with your young children at the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores Oct. 28. Preschool Pumpkin Patch for ages 5 and under features a pint-sized helping of Halloween and other seasonal activities between 9 a.m. and noon — no worries about nighttime travel or late bedtimes for the little ones. But they still get to wear their cute costumes for photos in the pumpkin patch on the deck of Soundside Hall, or inside if the weather is unpleasant.

Carnival-style games, sweets and face-painting, plus stories, songs and other activities with an autumn theme are available throughout the morning. Admission is $3 per person, plus state tax, for all ages.