"To protect and restore the Florida coastal and Indian River Lagoon ecosystems
through education, research and community stewardship."

Fun at Lagoonacy

Apr 14th, 2014 | Category: Blogs, MDC News, Oyster Restoration News, Shoreline Restoration News

P1050698Local citizens and visitors to New Smyrna Beach (and even a minion!) attended the “Lagoonacy” festival April 12, at the Marine Discovery Center. At this annual event, visitors had a chance to test their fly-casting, cardboard-boat building and archery skills.

They also had an opportunity to visit with vendors showcasing information ranging from red bay tree protection, Audubon Society bird watching to sea turtle nesting at Canaveral National Seashore.

P1050689

Inside the MDC, guests also had the opportunity to learn about a variety of sea life, as well as to gain hands-on experience making oyster mats and learning the value of oysters in the Indian River Lagoon and along the estuary’s shorelines. Many visitors walked through the mat-making area at the Lagoonacy event and learned about how the “Shuck and Share” oyster-recycling program works. Sixteen visitors sat down at the mat-making tables and learned how to make oyster mats, producing 34 mats that will eventually be deployed into the lagoon for oyster-reef restoration. 

Some guests to the event were experienced oyster mat-makers and returned to help produce more mats for the program. Other experienced mat-makers participated in quality control efforts, assuring that each mat contained the right number of oyster shells securely attached in the correct configuration. In all, visitors at the Lagoonacy event contributed over 35 volunteer hours to help produce usable oyster mats for the “Shuck and Share” project.P1050703

There was something for everyone at Lagoonacy, whether it was the epic mermaid rescue, talking to local boat dealers, shopping at the art market, signing up for summer camp, or  making oyster mats to help the IRL. It was great to see so many people out celebrating the “insanely fascinating Indian River Lagoon”!

P1050701