If Sharknado whetted your appetite and you think Shark Week should be “Shark Month,” then you’ll love the Tennessee Aquarium’s SharkFest on Friday, Aug. 2. “It’s the one time each year that we pull out all the stops to celebrate sharks,” said Thom Demas, the aquarium’s curator of fishes. “This year we have everything from new baby Epaulette sharks to an extensive ancient shark tooth collection on display.”
Shark fans can get an early start by viewing a special 5 p.m screening of Great White Shark 3D at IMAX. This new film, released in May, takes audiences on an underwater adventure to four of the world’s Great White Shark hotspots. People love seeing 16-foot long Great Whites leaping out of the water and silently swimming past SCUBA divers. Rather than trying to scare people, filmmaker D.J. Roller wanted to give audiences a virtual dive experience that helps everyone appreciate these amazing animals. “The giant IMAX screen is one of the most visually immersive mediums in the world,” said Mr. Roller. “So I think we’re able to give people a new view of Great White Sharks and deeper appreciation for the ocean.”
SharkFest officially begins at 6 p.m. with a frenzy of fun including:
- Cowboy Kyle’s Shark Roundup – Enjoy a rodeo where Cownose rays surround Epaulette Shark pups in a saltwater corral.
- Dr. Bernie’s Travelin’ Shark Show – Touchable museum specimens like an Angel Shark and Dogfish will either fuel, or cure “shark fever.”
- Fintastic Shark Hairdo and Temporary Shark Tattoo Stations – Get a little dab of gel and show your SharkTacular spirit with a dorsal fin hairdo. Add a Great White Shark tattoo and show your toothy grin.
- Massive Megalodon (Prehistoric shark species) Tooth Display – Once upon a time shark jaws were truly enormous. You’ll be amazed by this collection of fossilized teeth.
- Interactive Shark Dive Programs – Discover what it’s like SCUBA diving with the Aquarium’s Sandbar and Sand Tiger sharks. Quiz the divers and learn about these top predators.
- Shark Cart Programs – Jawsome facts will be delivered by an Aquarium educator who gives kids a chance to have some hands-on fun with shark bio-props.
- Cool Treat - After feasting on shark facts throughout the evening, guests will receive a FREE scoop of “Shark Week Frenzy” ice cream from Cold Stone Creamery.
Register online for SharkFest at the Tennessee Aquarium: www.tnaqua.org/events
SharkFest is free for aquarium members; $12.50 non-member adult/$7.50 non-member child (ages 3-12)
Add the special 5 p.m. screening of Great White Shark 3D at IMAX for $6.