One of the UK’s leading conservation and education charities, the Scottish Seabird Centre, will host its first ever Marine Fest.
Running from 31 May to 13 June, it aims to raise awareness of the diversity of Scotland’s marine environment and wildlife and the pressures facing them.
The Marine Fest programme was officially launched as Scotland’s Covid-19 restrictions ease and the charity’s visitor centre in North Berwick reopened to the public.
The programme includes a range of events, talks, walks and workshops in person at the visitor centre and digitally – from live science shows, rockpool rambles, bird identification walks, beach cleans and bio blitzes, to puppet shows, storytelling walks, felting, sand sculpting, sketching, and even a workshop to address football’s plastic problem.
The new festival, supported by EventScotland as part of the Year of Coasts and Waters 20/21 and Scotland’s Events Recovery Fund, will enable festival goers to learn more about Scotland’s seas and the challenges they face – especially the climate emergency.
People will be prompted to think about the behavioural changes they can make to reduce the negative impacts of human activity on marine and coastal habitats.
In 2021, Scotland continues to celebrate its coasts and waters with a programme of activities and events which will shine a spotlight on these vital elements of our landscape.
The charity’s chief executive, Susan Davies said: ‘As climate change warms our oceans and threatens the basis of all life, our conservation and education work is now more important than ever.
‘Our Marine Fest programme of activities should provide something for members of the local community and visitors to enjoy. We would like to thank EventScotland for their support through Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters, which has allowed us to create this new festival.
‘The climate crisis is one of the most challenging issues to address but there are steps everyone can take individually, or in our communities, that can help reduce the overall pressures on our marine environment and seabirds.
‘At the Scottish Seabird Centre, we help people to understand some of the things they can do to address this, we explain marine science, prompt ideas and motivate people to make their own behavioural changes in response to the climate crisis.’
Paul Bush OBE, director of events at VisitScotland, said: ‘We are delighted to support Marine Fest as part of Year of Coasts and Waters 20/21. Scotland offers the perfect stage to explore our natural environment and this year’s festival will combine live and digital events to showcase and celebrate the country’s marine environment and wildlife.’
The Scottish Seabird Centre is now open daily and their Marine Fest will run from 31 May-13 June 2021.
For more information visit www.seabird.org