National Aquarium and Enoch Pratt Free Library Make a Splash with Return of Read to Reef Book Club

The National Aquarium kicks off fall by inviting locals to visit for less

The National Aquarium and Enoch Pratt Free Library are once again teaming up to offer Baltimore students and their families the chance to read their way to the Aquarium. October 1 marks the return of Read to Reef, an award-winning program that connects Baltimore students' love of reading with the wonders of the world's aquatic treasures.

Beginning October 1, Baltimore-area children in fifth grade and younger with a Pratt Library card can receive a special bookmark from their local Pratt Library (while supplies last). Participants may request bookmarks through October, or while supplies last. After reading any five aquatic- or conservation-themed books, students can enter the code on the bookmark through the Aquarium's online ticketing portal to make a reservation and receive free admission for up to four guests through January 16, 2023.

The fall 2022 Read to Reef booklist includes titles suitable for children of all reading levels—from children who have not yet learned to read to older students looking to learn more about the wonders of our blue planet. This year's booklist includes titles like "Hidden Habitats: Water" by Lily Murray, "Agua, Agüita/Water, Little Water" by Jorge Tetl Argueta and "Wow in the World: Wow in the Wild: The Amazing World of Animals" by co-authors Mindy Thomas and Guy Raz.

"Reading can open a gateway to a world of possibilities for children and their families, and the Read to Reef book club is a great way for them to discover a love of learning about the ocean and environment," said National Aquarium Community Programs Manager Sarah Doccolo. "When a child learns about an animal or habitat they read about in a Read to Reef book, it is so rewarding to see the pride and wonder on their faces as they visit the National Aquarium with their families and learn new ways to love and protect those animals and habitats. We are proud to partner with Enoch Pratt Free Library to offer Baltimore students the chance to experience this full-circle moment for themselves."

Readers and their families will have the opportunity to meet author Mindy Thomas and receive a free, signed copy of "Wow in the World: Wow in the Wild: The Amazing World of Animals" at Enoch Pratt's Meet the Author! event on October 22.

"The Pratt Library is thrilled to again partner with the National Aquarium on the Read to Reef Book Club," said Enoch Free Library President and CEO Heidi Daniel. "It's a magical moment to see a child's face light up when they read books about the ocean and then get to step foot into a world-class Aquarium right here in our city. This innovative partnership opens up a world of possibilities for our young people and can help develop a lifelong love of learning."

Since the program's inception in 2016, 15,246 Baltimore-area students have read more than 76,230 books. Each of these students earned a free trip to explore the Aquarium with their families, totaling 54,787 tickets.

In addition to Read to Reef, the National Aquarium offers the following community programs that invite locals to visit for less:

Maryland Mornings

The Aquarium's popular Maryland Mornings program (available September 6, 2022, through Tuesday, February 28, 2023) offers Maryland residents $10 off adult admission and $5 off child admission before noon, Sunday through Friday.

Half-Price Friday Nights

As always, admission is half-price every Friday after 5 pm through Half-Price Friday Nights, presented by M&T Bank.

Free Fall Friday Night

On Friday, October 28, 2022, from 5 to 8 pm, the Aquarium will offer free admission as part of the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts' Free Fall Baltimore celebration. Online reservations will be required and capacity will be limited.

Public Health Worker Discount

The National Aquarium is proud to offer public health workers $5 off General Admission adult tickets for themselves and the dependents in their party who are also eligible for adult admission rates (ages 12-64). Maryland residents who are medical professionals, hospital employees and emergency medical service providers are eligible for this offer.

In a typical year, the Aquarium welcomes 100,000 guests for free or reduced admission through these community programs, sharing educational and enjoyable experiences with local and state residents.

Please visit our community page to learn more about the programs listed above.

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