Harbor WildWatch will kick off its summer-long beach programs with events Monday at Kopachuck and Penrose Point state parks.
At each program, participants can join a beach walk led by a trained marine naturalist, discover life forms they have never seen before and learn how their behaviors impact the fragile marine creatures that live in Puget Sound.
The opening day events will be from 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. There will be programs all week at various locations.
The group’s flagship program, Get Your Feet Wet, began in 2005 when a small activity station was set up at Jerisich Dock in Gig Harbor.
“The response from residents and visitors was so overwhelmingly positive, we decided to offer our interactive beach program on a regular published schedule,” said WildWatch’s Rebecca Mullen.
Today, programs are held all summer at locations such as Narrows Park, the Purdy Spit, and Manchester and Joemma Beach state parks. Most events coincide with low tides, so it is easier to observe marine creatures.
Visitors can find the event by looking for the blue canopy on the beach, and the organization’s volunteers and naturalists dressed in blue shirts and hats, Mullen said. Organizers collect live specimens and place them in touch tanks, set up a resource table and answer questions.
One of the goals of the entire program is to show area residents and visitors how humans impact marine life, Mullen said.
“We teach the public about beach dynamics, estuaries and habitats; animal populations; environmental sustainability; and how humans impact the marine environment,” she said.
Event calendar: For a list of summer beach programs, go to harborwildwatch.org.
Partners: Harbor WildWatch teams up with PenMet Parks and Washington State Parks to hold the beach programs.
More information: To learn more about the beach programs, contact Rebecca Mullen at rebecca@ harborwildwatch.org.