DEP's Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection Celebrates National Estuaries Day

Press Release


CONTACT: DEP Press Office, 850.245.2112,

DEP's Florida Coastal Office Celebrates
National Estuaries Day

~DEP host events at Apalachicola and Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserves~

Rookery Bay

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is celebrating National Estuaries Day, held on Sept. 28, 2019, with special events at Apalachicola and Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserves, focusing on the importance of Florida’s estuaries – the valuable natural environment where rivers meet the sea.

“DEP is excited to host and participate in celebrations of Estuaries Day, such as those at the DEP Apalachicola and Rookery Bay NERRs, to give visitors an opportunity to learn about Florida’s valuable estuarine ecosystems and what Florida’s residents can do to help protect them,” said Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection Director Kevin Claridge.

The Apalachicola Research Reserve is hosting a National Estuaries Day celebration on Friday, Sept. 27, from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. Activities include marine animal touch tanks and estuary-themed games. Visitors are invited to tour the reserve’s Nature Center and visit its three large aquariums featuring local estuarine and marine life. The first 600 visitors will receive a free T-shirt commemorating the reserve's 40th anniversary.

Visitors are invited to enjoy free admission at Rookery Bay's Environmental Learning Center from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 28. Attendees can enjoy staff-narrated boat tours, 30-minute kayaking trips, stand-up paddle boarding demos, junior scientist lab activities and more.

The country’s 28 National Estuarine Research Reserves, including the three reserves located in Florida and managed by DEP's Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection, celebrate National Estuaries Day each year to bring attention to these beautiful coastal environments. Among the most productive ecosystems on earth, estuaries serve as nurseries for fish and shellfish, and provide vital nesting and feeding grounds for coastal birds, sea turtles and marine mammals.