Daily Archives: August 20, 2009

$150k for transient orca skeleton education

This project could help raise awareness about the risk to SRKW recovery posed by persistent pollutants.  Congrats to Anne, Chrissy, and the rest of the PTMSC team!

PTMSC awarded $150,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services for its Orca Project

Port Townsend, WA—Thanks to a grant from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), the Port Townsend Marine Science Center (PTMSC) has received $150,000 for its Orca Project. A new exhibit will be created to display the articulated skeleton of a stranded female orca discovered on Dungeness Spit in 2002. This transient orca had the highest concentration of PCBs ever found in a marine mammal.

“The story of this orca is the story of the health of our waters,” said Anne Murphy, executive director for the PTMSC. “It’s important to tell it and we’re honored to have the partnerships and support to move forward in the telling.”

Although preliminary work on the Orca Project has already begun with the creation of a bone atlas, the official start date for the grant is October 1st, 2009. PTMSC has 12 months to complete the project and fundraise at least a 1:1 match for the project. PTMSC will partner with several organizations including the Whale Museum in Friday Harbor, the Burke Museum of Natural History in Seattle, the federal agency National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Orca Network based on Whidbey Island.

In 2009, IMLS received 433 applications requesting more than $48.4 million for their Museums for America grants. After field review, 167 projects received funding totaling $19,176,000. Other Washington state IMLS grant recipients include the Seattle Art Museum, Pacific Science Center. Burke Museum, Tacoma Art Museum and the Point Defiance Zoological Society.

“The projects selected represent a wide spectrum of activities that will help museums serve their communities better through increased education programs, community outreach programs, and behind-the-scenes projects,” said Anne-Imelda M. Radice, director for IMLS.

The Port Townsend Marine Science Center is devoted to understanding, preserving and teaching about our marine and shoreline environment as guardians for a sustainable future. Located on the beach at Fort Worden State Park, the PTMSC offers two public exhibits: the Marine Exhibit (ME) features large touch pools and aquaria, and the Natural History Exhibit (NHE) highlights the rich zone where land meets sea. Both exhibits are open Wednesday through Monday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for youth and free to PTMSC members. For more information, go to www.ptmsc.org or call 360.385.5582 or e-mail info@ptmsc.org.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute’s mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit www.imls.gov.

Contact Christina Pivarnik, Marketing
Port Townsend Marine Science Center
360.531.0127 or christina@pivarnik.com