Transforming Experiences

It is important to recognize that ocean health starts with each of us. At the Aquarium we have seen first hand that action follows experiences that change our thinking. For some,  its seeing the Chesapeake Bay for the first time through a school field experience. For others, its getting face-to-face with the Aquarium’s amazing animals or attending a thought-provoking lecture. 

Our friends and associates have wonderful stories of experiences at the National Aquarium that have transformed their lives, actions and behaviors. We’d like to share one of those experiences with you:

I met my wife Kathy in the rainforest, while she was working as a volunteer for the Aquarium. I was standing on a ladder sculpting a natural looking rock planter near the waterfall. She asked if I wanted her help. We started talking about things like the animals in the rainforest and photography, which was the other half of my job at the time. Kathy had a great interest in insects and herps. She kept an iguana named Iggy for 29 years! We decided to get married in the Rain Forest because we both have a deep appreciation for nature, and we had to return to the “scene of the crime.” Kathy and I have been all over the world photographing wildlife above and below the water’s surface. When people view my images, I want them to see and feel what I see in that subject. The drama and the intrigue; the shape, color, and beauty. All the work I do for the Aquarium and outside the Aquarium, promotes a strong conservation message. With Kathy and my colleagues, I feel I am a part of some greater good.

George Grall
Staff Photographer, National Aquarium/Professional Freelance Photographer, National Geographic

Has a trip to the National Aquarium transformed your thinking? Or maybe another experience in your life has brought you to action? We invite you to inspire others by sharing your own transforming experiences on our blog. Please leave us your comments!

Annually, thousands of volunteers join us in restoration efforts around the Chesapeake Bay and worldwide. In 2008, the Aquarium Conservation Team celebrated a milestone—the one millionth grass planting! Help keep our programs strong. Make a donation and ensure that marine wildlife will continue to benefit from our vital work.

2 Responses to “Transforming Experiences”


  1. 1 Lisa A. May 1, 2009 at 10:49 pm

    Back in the late 1990′s, I visited Baltimore Inner Harbor with my sister and her school students on a class trip. I was so extreemly impressed with the entire Aquarium!

    One of my highlights that I will never forget was getting to see one of the dolphins face to face through the glass tank downstairs after one of the dolphin shows. I practically had my nose against the glass while one of the dolphins had his nose right up to mine!

    It was a memorable encounter– my first with a dolphin– that sealed my love for these animals forever, and has inspired me to sign as many petitions as I can in behalf of Sea Mammal protections.

    I plan on going back to Baltimore Inner Harbor Aquarium again soon!

  2. 2 National Aquarium May 8, 2009 at 9:08 am

    Thanks so much for sharing your story, Lisa. We hope you come back to visit the Aquarium soon. And we thank you for helping to protect sea animals.


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