Cruise out onto Long Island Sound with The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk this fall to examine marine creatures brought up out of the water, to see lighthouses, to sample craft beers or to just enjoy a fun boat ride.
“Whether it’s to learn about the biodiversity of Long Island Sound in a very hands-on way, or to get close looks at lighthouses you can barely see from shore, or to just raise a glass on a weekend evening, we’re excited to give folks the chance to get out on the water,” said Dave Sigworth, the Aquarium’s spokesman. “The more that you’re out there, the more motivated you are to act on the Sound’s behalf.”
The following cruises are available this fall aboard The Maritime Aquarium’s R/V Spirit of the Sound™, a 64-foot catamaran that is the country’s first research vessel with quiet “green” hybrid-electric propulsion:
• “Marine Life Encounter Cruises”
at 1 p.m. on most Saturdays & Sundays in September, and on Sundays in October
Examine a variety of fish, crabs, mollusks and other creatures brought up right out of the Sound right before your eyes during these memorable 2.5-hour outings – the Aquarium’s signature cruises. Participants also help find crabs, worms and other animals hidden in the muddy bottom, and view plankton using a videomicroscope linked to the boat’s giant-screen monitor. Tickets are $29.95 ($24.95 for Aquarium members).
• “TGIF Cruises” each Friday in September
• and “Sunset Cruises” on Sat., Sept. 23 and Sat., Sept. 30
Enjoy a fun, relaxing tour out toward the Norwalk islands as twilight paints the western sky, dazzlingly reflected on the water. Both cruises depart at 6 p.m. Aquarium educators will point out sights and wildlife, but these 90-minute cruises mainly stress de-stressing. Tickets for each are $29.95 ($19.95 for members). Food and drink are not available for purchase on the boat. You may bring food and beverages in a small bag or soft-sided cooler. Glass bottles are prohibited.
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Cruises in Fall 2017 with The Maritime Aquarium
• “Central Long Island Sound Lighthouse Cruise”
Sat., Sept. 16 at 10 a.m.
This five-hour cruise makes passes by five historic beacons: Peck Ledge, Greens Ledge and Sheffield Island lighthouses in Norwalk, and also Penfield Reef Lighthouse in Fairfield and Stratford Shoal (Middle Ground) Light. Aquarium staff will share histories and anecdotes about all the beacons. Tickets are $70 ($60 for members). Food and drink are not available for purchase on the boat. You may bring food and beverages in a small bag or soft-sided cooler. Glass bottles are prohibited.
• “Maritime With A Twist: Octoberfest Cruises”
Each Saturday in October, departing at 5 p.m.
Hoist ale on Saturday evenings in October as The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk offers special Octoberfest Cruises featuring tastings from local craft breweries. These adults-only cruises – the latest in the Aquarium’s occasional “Maritime With A Twist” social events – will showcase a different brewery each Saturday. Sample and enjoy their flagship and seasonal products, while taking in the gorgeous sights on Long Island Sound. The schedule is:
• Oct. 7 – No Worries Brewing Co. of Hamden
• Oct. 14 – Charter Oak Brewing Co. of Danbury
• Oct. 21 – Two Roads Brewery Co. in Stratford
• Oct. 28 – The Owl’s Brew of New York and Beer’d Brewing Co. of Stonington.
Representatives from the breweries will be along to pour and discuss their beers. The Octoberfest cruises are timed to include the setting autumn sun and, with luck, a dazzling western sky reflecting on the water. Get back in time to enjoy dinner or an evening out with friends just steps away in the restaurants and nightspots of SoNo. Tickets are $50 ($45 for Aquarium members). Participants must be at least 21 years old.
For all cruises, participants must be at least 42 inches tall to board. Where applies, those under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
R/V Spirit of the Sound has a climate-controlled cabin but participants should dress for time outside on deck, where the best viewing occurs.
Capacity is limited so advance reservations are strongly suggested for all Aquarium cruises. Reserve your tickets online – and see the full schedule for R/V Spirit of the Sound – at maritimeaquarium.org. Or call (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206.