by Angela Szesciorka, Vertebrate Ecology Lab
On April 21 and 22, Moss Landing Marine Laboratories held its 44th annual Open House. We had 2,385 visitors and raised $9,869.58. To put that into context, the first Open House in the summer of 1968 had 40 visitors! The lab has certainly grown since then and so has the surrounding community’s interest and support for marine science.
The Open House is a free event hosted by MLML students, faculty, and staff for the public to come learn about our research and to have fun. Some of the events and activities include a sea lion show, fish painting, tours of all the labs, an opportunity drawing (like a raffle), a design-your-own button machine, a live invertebrate touch tank, arts and crafts, and a marine adventure puppet show!
The Open House Donations Committee received more than $13,800 in in-kind gifts and sold $5,063 in raffle tickets. We received 171 gifts from more 146 local business, students and friends of Moss Landing Marine Laboratories. A big thanks to all of our opportunity drawing donors — we could NOT have done this without you!
A large portion of the proceeds from these donations goes directly to Moss Landing graduate student scholarships. Last year, we raised enough for $2,000 in student scholarships. This years’ success means that there will be around $6,000 for scholarships next year.
The 2012 Open House was even featured in the Monterey Herald and Santa Cruz Sentinel article “Moss Landing Marine Lab's Earth Day open house draws a crowd: Annual event offers lab tours, children's activities, more”. The Santa Cruz Sentinel can be found here.