In Juno Beach, spring doesn’t officially begin until Loggerhead Marinelife Center hosts its annual sea turtles party, TurtleFest. Scheduled for Saturday, March 28 (a rain date has been set for Sunday, March 29) at Loggerhead Park, the twelfth annual sea turtle party’s theme, “Discovering Our World Ocean,” hints at the interconnectivity of not just our seas, but influences from land as well.
With more than 10,000 visitors expected to make the trek to Juno Beach for TurtleFest, this daylong event is one of the year’s largest conservation-themed events in Palm Beach County. Running from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., TurtleFest 2015 will feature educational presentations, shopping, live entertainment and interaction with rehabilitating sea turtles at LMC’s turtle yard. To demonstrate the interconnectivity of the world’s oceans and waterways, LMC’s World Ocean pavilion will focus on practical, every day methods to help with ocean conservation, with Trash Free Seas data sheets for guests to take with them the next time they clean up local beaches; water quality monitoring kits to measure parameters of water quality in the county; personal monofilament recycling containers to take fishing; and information on various conservation issues ranging from marine debris to responsible fishing and sustainable food choices.
Live music acts include The Pine School Knights of Steel youth steel drum ensemble at 10:15 a.m.; followed by an hour of demonstrations, including a FWC Canine Demo, Treasure Coast Wildlife; and Ocean Rescue. The stage will take on an unofficial American Idol theme with Hector Montenegro performing at 12:30 p.m., followed by Emily Brooke at 1:15 p.m., both 2015 American Idol contestants. 2:30 will feel more like five o’clock with the Jimmy Buffet tribute band, Jimmy Stowe & The Stowaways. Sounds take on a Caribbean bent with the “Big Band Reggae” bang, The Resolvers, at 3:45 p.m. Live entertainment wraps with a trip Across the Universe, the Beatles tribute band, at 5 p.m.
Fun educational and artsy activities include a fossil dig with Jurassic Parts, in which children get a chance to unearth mysteries locked beneath the bedrock. The KOOL Kid’s Zone will let the wee ones, five and under, get in on the fun with a marine-themed story time, games and crafts, and a Turtle Tots play area.
For the fourth year running, Palm Beach Country students in grades 4-12 submitted environmental-themed artwork for a juried student art contest. Awards for Best in Show, Best Environmental Interpretation, Best Artistic Interpretation and honorable mention for each age group will be presented at the festival, and the pieces will be displayed at LMC through the summer. This year, Suncoast High School student, K’Jakyre Daley’s artwork was selected for the official TurtleFest 2015 poster (pictured above).
- TurtleFest is a free event held at the Loggerhead Marinelife Center and surrounding Loggerhead Park.
- Festivities will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Parking will be tight, so FPL has arranged for free parking and shuttle service at its headquarters in Juno Beach: [600-644] Universe Blvd., North Palm Beach, FL 33408. Click here for a map.