Head to Galveston to honor the ocean with Artist Boat
by Eduardo de la Garza
The worldâ€™s oceans are majestic. Waves crash into shores, and tides are ruled by the moon and sun. Before humans were drawn to explore space, they were drawn to explore the oceans â€” to use it for travel and journey deep under its surface. On June 8, we celebrate World Ocean Day.
According to WorldOceanDay,org, â€œWorld Ocean Day rallies the world for ocean and climate action on 8 June and throughout the year. We work in partnership with youth leaders, zoos, aquariums, museums, and other youth-focused organizations, as well as a huge range of diverse organizations and businesses from all sectors in a growing global network. Together, we effectively engage the public, inform policymakers, and unite the world to protect and restore our shared ocean and create a stable climate.â€
The first event was proposed in 1992 at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, but the first official World Ocean Day wasnâ€™t held until 2002. Locally, Artist Boat will culminate their three-day celebration from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. June 10 at the World Ocean Day Festival in R.A Apffel Beach Park, East Beach, 1923 Boddeker Rd. in Galveston. Artist Boatâ€™s festival will offer booths from sponsors, such as from the Houston Human Society Wildlife Center.
â€œWhether you live 1,000 miles inland or right on the coast, we are all connected to the ocean,â€ said Samantha Norris, wildlife education manager for Houston Human Society Wildlife Center. â€œA healthy world ocean is critical to our survival. Every year, World Ocean Day provides a unique opportunity to honor, help protect, and conserve our worldâ€™s shared ocean. The ocean is important because it generates most of the oxygen we breathe, helps feed our growing world population, regulates our climate, cleans the water we drink, offers a pharmacopeia of medicines, and provides limitless inspiration.â€
Artist Boatâ€™s celebration begins with a documentary screening 8:30 p.m. June 8. Seadrift will be shown at Saengerfest Park on the Strand. At 6:30 p.m. June 9, people can go the The Proletariat Gallery & Public House for a poetry reading of Cast Away by Young Peopleâ€™s Poet Laureate Naomi Shihab Nye.
Apart from booths, the World Ocean Day Festival will feature workshops beginning at 11 a.m. You can book Screen Printing, Poetry Writing, I Smell Something Fishy, Watercolor Painting, Drum Circle, and Bucket Brigade here. The Beautify the Bucket Art Contest barrels will announce a winner at 3 p.m. After the contest barrels will be distributed to beaches. And you canâ€™t have the HHS Wildlife Center without animal ambassadors.
â€œHHS Wildlife Center will have a few special animal ambassadors for visitors to meet at the event,â€ Norris said. â€œYou can expect to see Woody the Wood Duck, Bogg Hogg the Western Hognose, and our three-toed box turtles at East Beach on June 10.â€
WorldOceanDay also offers resources. They offer event planners, posters and banners to print, and educational material for schools or personal use. At worldoceanday.org/resource-type/activities-for-kids youâ€™ll find Digital Ocean School, downloadable lapbooks, World Ocean Day for Schools, Youth Guide to the Ocean, and more.
While June 8 is one day, letâ€™s celebrate the day throughout the year. And make sure future generations get to experience the majesty of the ocean.