Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA) fans Jenna Deedy (from New Hampshire) and Gina West (from England) are asking people around the world to celebrate CMA and Winter on April 5. Though the two have never met Winter, they have been inspired by her story. Jenna has a chronic illness and relates to Winter’s will to persevere. The duo came up with the idea to create and organize an International day to thank CMA and Winter. They are promoting the event through Facebook.
On the exact day of the 38th anniversary the Clearwater Marine Aquarium first opened, the attraction located on Clearwater Beach celebrated by cutting the ribbon on their recent expansion.
The Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA), a Clearwater staple since the facilities opened in the 1980’s, has seen a recent expansion in their activities. In the past year, the aquarium has released nine rehabilitated sea turtles, experienced a 31% attendance growth, and the phenomenon of Winter the Dolphin has exposed the CMA (and beautiful Clearwater) to millions of children all over the country. However, according to the CMA website, “in spite of tremendous growth and a global presence, we also remain a ‘neighborhood’ aquarium.”
On October 7th, 350,000 children from 12,500 schools visited the Clearwater Marine Aquarium on a field trip – a virtual field trip. These children traveled to Florida and met Winter the Dolphin without leaving their classrooms, through a live webcast presented by Scholastic Books, publisher of the inspirational children’s book Winter’s Tail: How One Little Dolphin Learned to Swim Again.