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National Aquarium's Living Seashore Exhibit Wins Special Achievement Award



National Aquarium exhibit recognized for dynamic implementation of research and use of space

(Baltimore) – On the heels of its one-year anniversary on May 12, the National Aquarium's Living Seashore exhibit celebrates another milestone—the interactive exhibit has received a "Special Achievement, Engagement with Living Collection" award at the 28th annual Excellence in Exhibition Competition, presented by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM).

The Special Achievement award recognizes the impressive research utilized to develop the Living Seashore exhibit and the visitor's ability to link conservation principles to their interaction with the featured animals.

"Living Seashore is a guest favorite at the Aquarium, and we are happy to see it recognized at a national level," said John Racanelli, chief executive officer of the National Aquarium. "We hope the exhibit's conservation purpose—to inspire guests to take an active role in keeping our sandy shores safe for the animals that live there—will continue to reach a wide audience."

The Living Seashore exhibit explores the wildlife of the mid-Atlantic Seashore, highlighting local aquatic treasures and featuring a variety of hands-on experiences. Two touchpools contain aquatic creatures such as Atlantic stingrays, horseshoe crabs and moon jellies that guests can reach out and touch. The exhibit also features a replicated sandy dune and a digital multi-touch table where guests can learn more about objects that wash up on the beach and animals that live along the seashore. National Aquarium experts and educational interpreters are stationed throughout the exhibit to help guests safely interact with the animals and to teach them about proper conservation behavior. Since opening in May 2015, the Living Seashore has welcomed more than 1 million guests.

The Annual Excellence in Exhibition Competition recognizes outstanding achievement in the exhibition format from all types of museums, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens and any other types of noncommercial institutions offering exhibitions to the public. The competition recognized 10 exhibitions this year and honored each at a ceremony last month during the AAM 2016 Annual Meeting & Museum Expo in Washington, DC.

American Alliance of Museums

The American Alliance of Museums has been bringing museums together since 1906, helping to develop standards and best practices, gathering and sharing knowledge, and providing advocacy on issues of concern to the entire museum community. Representing more than 30,000 individual museum professionals and volunteers, institutions and corporate partners serving the museum field, the Alliance is the only organization representing the entire scope of the broad museum community. For more information, visit

Conservation, Exhibits, Education