Marine Science Day

  • Costume Contest
    Costume Contest  Participants in the 2017 Marine Science Day Costume Contest show off their creations in McHugh Auditorium.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Arts & Crafts Table
    Arts & Crafts Table  VIMS graduate student Kristen Bachand lends a helping hand to a group of young artists.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • SAV
    SAV  VIMS' Paul Richardson describes the work of the Submerged Aquatic Vegetation program.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Seining on the York
    Seining on the York  Marine Science Day attendees search the waters of the York River for signs of aquatic life.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • VR Exhibit
    VR Exhibit  Visitors to Marine Science Day test out some virtual reality viewers that scientists in VIMS Coastal Watershed Program use to map plant cover and other conditions in hard-to-reach areas of coastal marshes.  David Malmquist/VIMS
  • VIMS Invertebrate Collection
    VIMS Invertebrate Collection  VIMS' Jennifer Dreyer, curator of the VIMS Invertebrate Collection, discusses the selection of species on display for Marine Science Day.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Zooplankton Ecology
    Zooplankton Ecology  VIMS' Joe Cope describes the work of the Zooplankton Ecology Lab to an attendee at Marine Science Day.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Shellfish Pathology
    Shellfish Pathology  VIMS graduate student Lydia Bienlien answers questions from attendees at the Shellfish Pathology station.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Teaching Marsh
    Teaching Marsh  Marine Science Day attendees learn about the various plant and animal life that make the CCRM Teaching Marsh its home.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Marine Science Day
    Marine Science Day  VIMS graduate students Ann Arfken (R) and Shanna Williamson (L) act as gatekeepers to the gummy worm brownie plate behind them.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Multispecies Research Group
    Multispecies Research Group  VIMS' Melanie Chattin (R) shows some of the unique artifacts found by the Multispecies Research Group's survey of fishes in Chesapeake Bay.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Oyster Hatchery
    Oyster Hatchery  VIMS' Jessica Moss describes the work done by the Aquaculture Genetics & Breeding Technology Center at our Oyster Hatchery.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Shuttle Bus
    Shuttle Bus  Marine Science Day attendees board the shuttle bus which transports them across the VIMS' Gloucester Point campus.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Nunnally Ichthyology Collection
    Nunnally Ichthyology Collection  VIMS' Sarah Huber shares some selections from the Nunnally Ichthyology Collection to Marine Science Day visitors.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Underwater Vehicles
    Underwater Vehicles  Haixing “Daniel” Wang explains the use of AUVs (autonomous underwater vehicles) to a pair of visitors during Marine Science Day.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Marine Technology
    Marine Technology  Electronic Tech Supervisor Todd Nelson shows off some of the uses of marine technology at VIMS.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Cartesian Diver
    Cartesian Diver  VIMS Ph.D. student Jessie Turner (R) helps guests build a Cartesian diver to learn about buoyancy.  Chris Katella/VIMS
  • Visitors Center
    Visitors Center  Marine Science Day attendees stop by the VIMS Visitors Center and Aquarium located in Watermen's Hall.  Chris Katella/VIMS
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VIMS' annual open house is a fun-filled event for the whole family. Join us in Gloucester Point for exhibits, children's activities, seining on the York River, lab tours, a seafood cooking demonstration, mini-lectures, and much more. All activities are free, as is parking. The event takes place rain or shine.

Marine Science Day 2018 took place on May 19. Stay tuned for next year's date! 

MSD Offerings 
VIMS in the Bay and Around the World

Ocean research takes VIMS scientists from Poquoson to the Poles. Learn about efforts by VIMS researchers in Chesapeake Bay to manage blue crabs, restore oysters, survey fish populations, unravel biodiversity, and monitor water quality. Also learn about our international work in Antarctica and the deep sea. These exhibits are located in Watermen's Hall and Chesapeake Bay Hall and are open continuously from 10 am - 3 pm.

Open Labs

Tour working laboratories to learn about the latest tools and techniques of marine research. Scientists lead the tours and will explain their current research.

Activities & Tours

Learn and have fun with crafts and other activities in our Children's Pavilion. Tour our Teaching Marsh, Shellfish Hatchery, and Riparian Forest. Collect, observe, and learn about estuarine organisms from the York River.

By the Clock

In addition to our day-long activities, we offer a series of events that begin at specific times. These events include 10-minute Fast Talks, a seafood cooking demonstration, and more. The Program of Events will be available online closer to the date of the event.

Food and Gifts

Marine Science Day T-shirts and other clothing and memorabilia will be for sale in the VIMS Gift Shop. Hot sandwiches, snacks, and drinks will be available for purchase near the Children's Pavilion, and sno-balls will be available for purchase in the boat basin.

Costume Contest

Create a marine-themed costume to participate in our Marine Science Day Costume Contest. Everyone, every age, can participate by creating original costumes of marine plants or animals. Individuals and groups are welcome. Ribbons are awarded for most original plant or animal, most creative use of materials, best group costume, and best representation of a plant or animal. The overall winner will earn a $50 gift certificate to VIMS' Gift Shop. Register here.

Visit our Flickr and YouTube pages to view wonderful costumes created and worn by individuals and groups in past years.