Science Center offers orca study

Elementary students from across the Olympic Peninsula have an opportunity to learn about how sound travels under water and how orcas communicate with one another.

The Port Townsend Marine Science Center is offering these classes to third- and fourth-grade students through early April.

"Inspired by our connection with the Salish Sea Hydrophone Network, we've designed this program to lead students through interactive explorations of how sound travels in the marine environment and ways local orcas use sound to survive," said Anne Murphy, executive director of the science center.

To register for a class of third- or fourth-grade students, contact Lucy Carpenter at the science center, 360-385-5582, ext. 113 or by e-mail at:

The classes were made possible thanks to nearly $13,000 in sponsorships from First Federal, Wells Fargo, U.S. Bancorp and Harrington Schiff Foundations, the Port Townsend Yacht Club, Port Townsend Rotary and Kitsap Bank. The classes are free to students in Jefferson, Clallam and Kitsap counties.

Port Townsend Marine Science Center is devoted to understanding, preserving and teaching about the marine and shoreline environment as guardians for a sustainable future.

Located on the beach at Fort Worden State Park, the center offers two public exhibits: The marine exhibit features large touch pools and aquaria and the natural history exhibit highlights the rich zone where land meets sea.

The natural history exhibit is open Friday-Sunday from noon-4 p.m. Admission is $3 for adults, $2 for youths and free to science center members. The marine exhibit is closed for the season but open by appointment.

For more information, call 360-385-5582, e-mail or visit

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