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New Zealand Science Teacher

Science Education & Society

Wellingtonians to make a splash at Sea Week 2014

A range of sea-based events are planned for the capital in March.

Above: Sustainable Coast clean-up (Image courtesy Sustainable Coastlines)

Sea Week 2014 is shaping up to be the best yet. In the capital city, there is the opportunity to become immersed in marine science from March 1–9.

Nicci Wood, who also works as an infrastructure planner for Wellington City Council, is the regional coordinator for Sea Week. Her job is to bring together the separate events that will take place over the week, and to promote, encourage and inspire participation.

“Sea Week is a very special celebration for New Zealanders,” she says. “Its purpose is to raise awareness of our marine environment, and to strengthen our connections between land and sea.”

Sea Week presents a great opportunity to celebrate the ocean with children.

“Kids are great sponges of information, and important for communicating messages to families and wider communities,” she says.

Each area in New Zealand will have activities and events, but Nicci says there will be a rich variety of choices available for Wellington water-lovers.

“This year we have a wide range of different activities taking place,” she says.

“There is a firm focus on coastal health, with community beach clean-ups happening along Wellington’s South Coast.”

If you’re interested in what happens with our city’s everyday waste, why not join in on a trip to the Moa Point Wastewater Treatment Plant? Interested people are invited to join a guided tour on Tuesday, March 4 – it’s free to attend, and all you need to bring are your shoes and some warm clothing.

Nicci says bookings are likely to quickly fill up, but classroom teachers are welcome to enquire about additional trips throughout the year.

The central city library, along with its suburban branches, will be decked out with themed book and information displays to spark readers’ interest in all things marine science.

A highlight of the week looks to be the Sundown Snorkel. Wellingtonians will gather for an after-work underwater adventure through Taputeranga Reserve on Thursday March 7, between 5 and 7pm. Sausages, hot chocolate, and beer will be supplied afterwards by the Friends of Taputeranga Marine Reserve.

For those who are more inclined to stay on shore, there’s a Canon photo competition – anyone can submit a photo taken in or around the marine reserve, and the winning entries will be displayed at Reading Cinemas.

Interested Wellingtonians can check out the full regional schedule here.

Sea Week celebrates our industrial, recreational, spiritual and cultural connections to our marine environment, says Nicci.

“In this region, and of course, all around New Zealand, the coastline makes up a huge part of our lives.”

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