Now in its 5th year, SOS Ocean Conservation Day, sponsored by Tortuga Music Festival, returns to The LOOP. The free, one-day, outdoor event combines fun and educational programs for the entire family to bring awareness to the ocean. The SOS mission and event theme this year is, “Lettuce Give Thanks.” 100% of all profits from the silent auction will benefit the sea turtle feedings at the Marine Environmental Education Center at the Carpenter House (MEEC).
The day begins with a Morning Shoreline Cleanup hosted by Free Our Seas & Beyond from 9-11 a.m. All participants will receive a raffle ticket for the chance to win general admission tickets to the 2023 Tortuga Music Festival. Within the SOS Ocean Conservation area, ocean and marine conservation groups and local businesses will engage with attendees through a variety of activities to educate the community on how to become more eco-friendly and help save marine life and coral reefs.
Confirmed activities include: Turtle tattoos sponsored by Sea Turtle Oversight Protection; shark cage photo-booth presented by Sharks4Kids; live lionfish safety demonstrations sponsored by Force-E Scuba hosted by local divers Charley Schram and Rosalie Opalka; cast and reel in a (toy) shark, presented by American Shark Conservation; test your knowledge on corals with Friends Of Our Florida Reefs; help create a mosaic “plastic portrait” with IGFA; a pelican release on the beach with South Florida Wildlife Center; Fort Lauderdale Police “Comet” video game trailer; marine unit and fire rescue CPR demonstrations; and a live Jiu Jitsu demonstrations by Fort Lauderdale Jiu Jitsu.
Photo opportunities include live mermaids; Pirate Captain Theo Jones; strolling characters; and pucker up to kiss-a-shark in the SOS debris art mural. Interactive areas include arts and crafts with local artists and debris sculptures pop-up art. Guests will also enjoy eco-friendly, biodegradable giveaways, live music, food and drink vendors and more.
This year’s event will be plastic free. Event goers are encouraged to bring their own ocean-friendly drinkware to help continue the ongoing mission to ban plastic in our community. Additionally, Lauderdale Marina will distribute free brown bags to help ban-plastic at the event.