Mississippi Aquarium prepares ahead of potential severe weather

August 24, 2020

By Desirae Duncan | August 24, 2020 at 3:55 PM CDT - Updated August 24 at 6:33 PM

GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - The Coast’s newest attraction, the Mississippi Aquarium, is keeping a close eye on the tropical weather in the Gulf of Mexico.

“We’re adjusting for both things, whether it’s a grand opening or a hurricane, we’re kind of planning for both at the same time,” said CEO and president Kurt Allen.

The Mississippi Aquarium is preparing to officially open to the public Saturday, Aug. 29. Before that, the aquarium has been preparing for the possibility of two early visitors: Marco and Laura.

“We’ve already gone into hurricane prep mode. We’re starting to take away anything that can fly around, we batten down all the hatches, tie anything down that could possibly fly, and make sure all of the animals are in situations where they’re safe and no harm can come to them,” Allen said.

Allen said fortunately, the aquarium was built to handle severe weather and strong winds.

“The nice thing is that our buildings are built to 160 miles per hour wind speeds, so we can bring things inside so that they’re safe and secure, and then we go into the animal habitats to make sure that there’s nothing in any of the animal habitats that can break free or fly around and really just button everything up,” he said.

As for the animals - those that have arrived already - they’re being taken care of as well.

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