Saturday, January 12, 2008


$1 million to fund downtown aquarium - 16th-century shipwreck replica will be exhibited


Pensacola News Journal
January 12, 2008

The University of West Florida will announce a $1 million gift to name the Ocean Aquarium Exhibit at the planned Vice Admiral John H. Fetterman State of Florida Maritime Museum and Research Center.

UWF officials said in a news release the gift is from "a family with strong Pensacola roots."

The gift will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the state of Florida's Alec P. Courtelis program for university facilities, translating into $2 million in support of the museum.

A formal announcement is planned for Jan. 25.

The ocean aquarium, a three-story, 135,000-gallon seawater tank, will serve as a true representation of the bays along the coast of Florida. It will support educational programs in the marine sciences and underwater archaeology and promote the need to preserve underwater resources.

Among the most exciting features of the exhibit will be a replica 16th-century shipwreck. Visitors will be able to watch UWF nautical archaeology students lay grids over the wreck and record its dimensions. Certified divers will have opportunities to participate in tank dives.

UWF President John Cavanaugh,Nancy Fetterman, wife of the late Adm. John Fetterman, Doug Mund, aquarium designer; and members of the donating family will attend the announcement ceremony at 4 p.m. Jan. 25 at Palafox Pier in downtown Pensacola.


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