The opening of Audubon Aquarium coincides with World Oceans Day.
Updated: Jul 20
Chris and Will, the Prince Charmings of Podcasting, got an invite to be a part of the reimagining of the Audubon Aquarium in New Orleans, Louisiana. Chris and Will's episode of the broadcast is now on your favorite podcast network, visuals can be seen below, and the adventure episode airs on the ChrisWill Network in Late June.
Press Release: Audubon Nature Institue.
After a major reimagining, Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Insectarium will open tomorrow on the New Orleans riverfront. The colorful celebration will feature Mardi Gras Indians, a fireboat in the Mississippi River, a chalk artist at work, and children dashing through a wall of bubbles to be among the first guests to explore the renovated attractions.
Part of the $41 million project involved relocating the popular Audubon Insectarium into the Aquarium building from its former home blocks away, creating a one-of-a-kind attraction designed to engage and educate guests about the natural world.
This renovation is the first major upgrade since Audubon Aquarium opened in 1990. Since then, more than 40 million people have visited Audubon’s downtown New Orleans attractions. Ron Forman, Audubon Nature Institute President and CEO says the freshly redesigned Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Insectarium will be drivers for increased tourism for the city, “Our guests are engaged in nature from the moment they arrive and throughout their visit. As we share our love of nature with our guests, they can also see the experience the glorious New Orleans riverfront like never before.”
The redesigned complex features a two-story glass lobby designed to immerse guests in nature: giant living plant walls, colorful oversized images, a sweeping view of the Mississippi River, and a first glimpse into Audubon Insectarium’s spectacular new indoor butterfly garden.
Audubon Insectarium colorfully showcases the roles insects play in our environment – from pollinating crops and flowers to breaking down waste – as well as their incredible diversity and beauty.
“We give guests a chance to see up close some of the amazing work insects do in our environment,” said Zach Lemann, Curator of Animals in Audubon Insectarium. “From tiny leaf cutter ants busily carry their loads to their colony, to the honeybees that can fly outside and return to make honey in their hives here in the Insectarium, we give guests a glimpse into how insects work, their unique designs, and the amazing jobs they do every day.”
New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell recently toured the facilities and assisted curators in releasing some of the hundreds of butterflies now seen soaring in the butterfly garden.
“These attractions are truly one-of-a-kind, much like the city of New Orleans. Having them on the riverfront will give our local residents as well as those who visit our beautiful city two world-class experiences in one place. The Aquarium and Insectarium are truly two of the crowning jewels in our city,” said Mayor Cantrell.
Audubon Aquarium opened to tremendous fanfare and celebration when it debuted in 1990. Updates through the years have increased its popularity and it was recently named one of the top five aquariums in the country. Crowd favorite exhibits including the Amazon Rainforest and ‘Down the Bayou’ have new looks as part of the renovations, and for the first-time guests can step to the edge of the massive 450,000-gallon Gulf of Mexico and peer into its depths from the ‘Life in the Gulf’ exhibit.
“Louisiana’s natural beauty is showcased extensively throughout both Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Insectarium,” said Billy Nungesser, Louisiana Lieutenant Governor, who oversees tourism efforts for the state. “Guests can learn about conservation of our natural resources as well as what they can do to help protect them. Audubon’s efforts to engage and educate people about the importance of nature with those who visit these attractions send an important message.”
The opening of Audubon Aquarium coincides with World Oceans Day, an international effort to celebrate the oceans and raise awareness about their importance in our lives. Visitors to Audubon Aquarium June 8th have the opportunity to interact with numerous conservation groups as part of Party for the Planet presented by Entergy. Supported by Entergy’s Environmental Initiatives Fund, this conservation education program brings people together to learn about the world around us. Among the partners engaging with Audubon guests throughout the Aquarium with hands-on activities and information:
• Stennis Oceanographic Laboratory
• U.S. Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command
• New Orleans Mosquito, Termite, and Rodent Control Board
• Louisiana Master Naturalists of Greater New Orleans
• Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program
• Coastal Wildlife Network
• Gulf United for Lasting Fisheries (GULF)
“While we celebrate the opening of two of New Orleans most popular family attractions, we do so with gratitude for Audubon Nature Institute and its on-going commitment to our natural world,” said Governor John Bel Edwards. “As a sportsman myself, I appreciate the conservation messages and connections between plants, animals, and people that are featured in both Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Insectarium.”
Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Insectarium are open at 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. daily, tickets are available online at audubonwonder.com