This is not one of the largest aquariums in the country, but it is home to Winter, the dolphin with a prosthetic tail, and the place where the movie about her was filmed....
If you are expecting something along the lines of the Georgia Aquarium, the National Aquarium in Baltimore, or the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga, you will be disappointed. The tanks are not as large or as numerous, but the main attraction here is Winter. She performs several "shows" a day...showing off the prosthetic tail and her ability to adapt to her amputation.
After seeing Winter and her friends at the Aquarium, you can take a trolley or boat to the building that houses the memorabilia from the making of the movie "A Dolphin Tale", starring Harry Connick, Jr. and Ashley Judd. There are film clips that repeat all day long. Each area retells part of the story of how Winter was found and helped back to health...with a little help from the Hollywood set.
If you do not like walking uphill (or downhill) take the trolley. It is quicker (about 15 min.) and drops you off at the front door of the building, If you enjoy the water, and walking, take the boat. It is a couple block walk uphill to the building (or downhill to the marina) and the journey takes about a half hour in total. There is also a 30 person limit on the boat, so you might have to wait more than a half hour for the next boat.
The kids really liked seeing Winter and learning about how she uses her "tail", and about the special "Winter's Gel" that is now being used by many of the amputees to make wearing their prosthetic devices easier and more comfortable. The older children (8 and over) were the most interested in these items, while the younger children enjoyed playing the carnival games and drawing a picture for Winter.
This is a great way to spend an afternoon.
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