Wednesday, July 16, 2008

A Day at the Aquarium

When it's pouring down rain outside, what better way to spend a morning, but wandering around some of this city's finest attractions. My city is the site of the Tennessee Aquarium. This fabulous place was opened at the tail end of my junior year in high school. I can still remember working as a volunteer during opening weekend. It.was.crazy.

The first building that opened was River Journey. It's all freshwater fish and mammals. Ocean Journey opened a couple of years ago and it houses the really exciting penguin exhibit! Here's our morning out in pictures. And the morning I'm referring to is this past Sunday morning.

This is a Hyacinth Macaw. Gorgeous blue feathers and master imitator of voices. He was saying "hello" and "goodbye", which was amusing, but then he started to imitate the different laughs that he heard. That was hysterical!

Ocean Journey has a touch tank that's full of sharks and sting rays. The kids had a ball with it! The rays were hilarious because they kept swimming up on the glass and seemingly waving their fins at us.

Big A LOVES the butterfly garden. This trip she was determined to catch one of the many butterflies on her hand. After many failed attempts, she finally lured one (with daddy's help) and was so excited!

The ever popular penguin exhibit opened last year and it's a HUGE hit. I could watch those penguins for hours! The Gentoo and Macaroni penguins in this exhibit are very social and love to interact with the humans on the other side of the glass. Little A and nephew were enjoying this penguin's diving show.

This penguin loved Little A. He kept swimming up to her and looking at her. She was hypnotized and very amused.

This was my proudest shot of the day. I'm still trying to get used to my "big fancy camera" and finally managed to turn the flash off and use a manual setting. VERY SCARY. Anyway, these are some jellyfish that I captured. Big A was enjoying watching them move in an underwater ballet.

The kids loved the dive show. The divers actually talk to the audience and interact with us while telling us about the fish and sharks that live in this exhibit. My favorite is the elusive sea turtle who occasionally makes an appearance.

We finally made our way over to River Journey where Big A found something to climb on...finally. This is the top of the River Otter exhibit. Gorgeous waterfall! The otters were being shy this day.

This is something that I just found to be too funny. Apparently this alligator and turtle have grown up together. So, here they are, taking an afternoon siesta. The alligator is actually resting his head on the turtle's back. This is something you probably wouldn't see in the wild.

Before heading to lunch, I wanted to grab one last pic of this fountain in the courtyard. Hubby & I were photographed in front of this fountain just before our wedding reception. If I can dig out the photo, I'll post it here. It was VERY cool. Here's nephew enjoying the view.


Kat said...

It looks like no one was there. We have not been to Chattanooga in a while...and last time we were at the aquarium, there was just the River Journey. We love to come up there. Stay at the Chattanooga choo-choo. Ride the electric bus to the aquarium. Eat at Cheeseburger, cheeseburger.

I am feelin' a road trip in my future...

(which seems silly as we have annual passes for our own aquarium...)

Angie said...

Kat: I couldn't believe how sparse the guests were. There were people, but the buildings are so big that it has to be SUPER crowded before you notice. Let me know if you guys road trip up here! My girls love that electric bus and I'm hankering for a chocolate shake from Cheeburger. :-)

Teri said...

I LOVE our aquarium here in Atlanta. And I've been lucky enough to catch some pretty cool photos, too. Yours are great!

LaskiGal said...

For a minute it looked like you were near me . . . in Columbus (at the zoo's aquarium), but then I remembered you are in Tennessee!!! I may have to check it out next time I visit my sister! J loved the aquarium!

Angela said...

Oh my goodness. I think I'm going to cry. I cannot believe we're at the point in our lives where you're taking your little ones to the aquarium. WHEN did we get this old?? I still remember taking our senior pictures there!

Pics and kids adorable as always! but seriously... I think I'm going to cry!

Rhea said...

We have an awesome Dallas World Aquarium that I love to visit with the kids. Great pictures from yours!

Angie said...

Teri: Thanks so much! I was trying hard to use my fancy camera. I only ended up with about 25% of the pics being good. The rest were blurry. Oh well!

Laskigal: Come on down! We love our Aquarium. My hubby has family in Columbus, so we might venture up your way sometime and check out your zoo & aquarium too.

Angela: I know the feeling. It stuns me everytime that I take the girls to one of our old haunts and they discover it for the first time.

Rhea: Thanks! I've heard of that aquarium. If we're ever in Dallas, I know where to go now! :-)

Tam said...

I went to an Aquarium in Gaitlinburg when I got married...I want to say it was called Ripleys or something....??? This one looks so very cool!!!!!!


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