Gray’s Reef presents FareWhale Festival

The Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary hosted the second annual FareWhale Festival at the Tybee Island Pier on Saturday, March 21.FareWhale Festival exhibits on the Tybee Island Pier

FareWhale Festival exhibits on the Tybee Island Pier

The FareWhale Festival used a play on words to invite the public to celebrate the northward migration of the North Atlantic right whales as they begin to leave their calving grounds offshore of Georgia and Florida to return to the cooler seas off the New England coast near Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary.

Two children negotiate the right whale obstacle course.

Two children negotiate the right whale obstacle course.

Gray’s Reef recruited 17 exhibitors to join in the venture to bring to light the plight of the critically endangered whales by educating visitors through fun activities and relevant information.  The exhibits and activitries included a photo booth; a  right whale obstacle course (whale tails provided); interpretive beach walks provided by Cathy Sakas; a whale presentation given by the Tybee Island Marine Science Center; and an inflatable right whale that is 22 feet long (about the size of a one year old calf). Tybee Arts Association sold ocean or right whale inspired artwork with ten percent of the proceeds going to the Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary Foundation.

“We estimate that around 500 people attended the event, almost double from last year,” said Abby Murphy, one of the organizers.

Gray’s Reef partnered with the Sea to Shore Alliance to host the event.

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