The Mississippi Aquarium continues to progress as the acrylic panels made their way to the Port of Gulfport.
Mississippi Aquarium CEO David Kimmel said, “This is a cool day.” It is definitely a cool day for the Mississippi Aquarium. Today they received the acrylic panels that were transported from Italy.
Kimmel traveled to Italy to see and walk through the panels first hand. “This is how our visitors will be able to see our aquatic collection and really get immersed into the aquarium.”
The acrylic comes in all sizes. You’ll see large and small. “But the biggest panel that we have is over 30 feet wide, 25 feet tall, and weighs over 40 tons.”
Mississippi Aquarium COO Kurt Allen said, “Right over here, you’ve got two round cylinders. One of them is the tunnel that you will actually be able to walk through in our large exhibit. The other, the larger one on the left, is actually the swirl tank which gets installed vertically and we have a ramp that goes around it.”
The panels will be moved to the aquarium site around the fourth quarter of this year. Until then, the panels will be stored at the Port of Gulfport. Port of Gulfport Executive Director Jonathan Daniels said, “When this is installed and when we walk through the aquarium for the first time. We are going to be able to point to certain parts of the aquarium and say it was handled at the Port of Gulfport.”
Ninety percent of the aquarium’s funds are secured. The other ten percent will come from fundraisers like the Splash Bash at Jones Park on September 21st. “It’s a party. We want people to enjoy it, but at the same time learn more about the aquarium and support the aquarium with all of the proceeds going to the Mississippi Aquarium,” said Kimmel.