UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL—that’s how visitors
experience Chesapeake Bay aquatic life at the Glen Echo Park
Aquarium. About a dozen tabletop tanks containing stingrays,
blue crabs, yellow perch and other species line the walls of the
main exhibit area. Because it’s a small, interactive attraction,
you can spend time getting to know the creatures.
The environment is kid-friendly (typically drawing 2- to
10-year-olds), with tables of shells, rocks and sand to touch,
weigh and measure, along with a preserved sea turtle and
fossilized whale vertebrae to examine. There are microscopes to
view slides of bird feathers, and magnifying glasses to check out
a seahorse skeleton. Outside, visitors can test the salt content of
water, play with a sand table, and climb on a pirate ship.
Though the aquarium may not be large, it’s big on personal
attention. Staff members are eager to answer questions and
let you hold one of about 15 species, including a shrimp or
horseshoe crab, from a shallow touch tank.
The aquarium, which opened last year, is just over the
pedestrian bridge as you enter Glen Echo Park. It is open May 1
through Sept. 18: 11-4 Wed.-Fri., 10-4 Sat., 11-4 Sun. From Sept.
19-April 30: 10-4 Sat., 11-4 Sun. only. General admission is $6.
For more information, visit www.gepaquarium.org.
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