UC Santa Cruz's Long Marine Laboratory celebrates its 25th anniversary with a special lecture series and public programs

Long Marine Laboratory turns 25 this fall, and the oceanside research facility will be celebrating its silver anniversary with a variety of public programs, tours, and lectures during the first 25 days in October. Highlighting the October celebration is a stellar lineup of speakers for the lab's annual fall lecture series. In addition, there will be special exhibits and commemorative activities throughout the month at the lab's Seymour Marine Discovery Center.

Founded in 1978, the Joseph M. Long Marine Laboratory is a research facility of the Institute of Marine Sciences at the University of California, Santa Cruz. The lab is known throughout the world for innovative research on marine mammals, marine ecology, and issues relating to ocean health. The Seymour Marine Discovery Center, which runs the lab's public education and visitor programs, brings marine research to life for tens of thousands of schoolchildren and other visitors every year.

This year's fall lecture series, "Long Marine Lab: 25 Years of Marine Science," features seven prominent speakers on three Thursday evenings in October. Confirmed speakers include Julie Packard, Leon Panetta, Kathryn Sullivan, Burney Le Boeuf, Brian Walton, Sandy Lydon, and Gary Griggs (see below for a complete schedule). Talks begin at 7 p.m. at the Seymour Center. Admission is $5 for members, $8 for the general public. Seating is limited, so advance purchase is recommended. Tickets can be purchased at the center or by phone at (831) 459-3800.

On weekends throughout October, the Seymour Center will be offering docent-led tours nearly every hour. There will be two "See More" presentations every day, one on the discovery of "marine snow" by UCSC ocean scientist Mary Silver and another on the story of "Ms. Blue," the blue whale whose 87-foot skeleton has become the Long Marine Lab mascot.

The center's touch tanks and aquariums will feature the usual variety of fascinating marine life, including Chinook salmon in the seasonal tank and 25 different types of crabs. The history of Long Marine Lab will be featured in 25 "fascinating facts" posted throughout the exhibit hall, and younger visitors can use a pirate's map to search for treasure in a "Silver Scavenger Hunt."

Additional information on all programs and events is available on the Seymour Center web site or by calling the center at (831) 459-3800.

Fall Lecture Series

Long Marine Lab: 25 Years of Marine Science

* October 2: Leon Panetta, director of the Leon and Sylvia Panetta Institute for Public Policy at Cal State Monterey Bay, and Julie Packard, executive director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium and a UCSC alumna. Both of these local luminaries served on the Pew Oceans Commission and will share their perspectives on ocean health and policy.

* October 9: Brian Walton, coordinator of the Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group, and Burney Le Boeuf, professor emeritus of ecology and evolutionary biology at UCSC, will share results and insights from two decades of research on peregrine falcons and elephant seals, respectively. They will be joined by Kathryn Sullivan, president and CEO of the Center of Science and Industry and a UCSC alumna, who will share her perspectives as an astronaut, oceanographer, and educator.

* October 16: Sandy Lydon, professor emeritus of history at Cabrillo College, and Gary Griggs, professor of Earth sciences and director of UCSC's Institute of Marine Sciences. This presentation, "Long Marine Lab and Monterey Bay: From the Cretaceous to the Coastal Commission," will review the geological and historical past and possible futures of the region.