NSU’s Marine Environmental Education Center to Celebrate Earth Day with Community Event


Free Our Seas And Beyond Joins NSU for Environmental Art Festival and Earth Day Celebration


FORT LAUDERDALE/DAVIE, Fla. – Talk about a perfect location.

If you’re going to celebrate Earth Day and invite the South Florida community, where better to do it than at Nova Southeastern University’s (NSU) Marine Environmental Education Center (MEEC) at the historic Carpenter House, right on the City of Hollywood’s north beach?

NSU is joining forces with Free Our Seas and Beyond, Broward County and the City of Hollywood to host the second annual “Free Our Seas and Beyond Environmental Art Festival.” While Earth Day falls two days later, in order to allow more people to attend, this event is scheduled for 9 a.m. Saturday, April 20th. The MEEC is located at 4414 N Surf Road on Hollywood Beach.

The festival, which is free and open to the South Florida community, kicks off at 9 a.m. with a community beach clean-up sponsored by the SURFRIDER Foundation of Broward County. Then, from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. original and inspiring works of art will be showcased for everyone to enjoy. The family-friendly event includes live musical performances, food trucks, children’s activities, environmentally friendly vendors, a non-profit ocean conservation zone, a community art installation and more.

“I enjoy being able to educate and offer solutions through art,” said Lillie Carlson, Free Our Seas board member. “The exhibits are made entirely of ocean debris from our local beach which gives the community a powerful visual of how everyday choices impact our environment”

And the must see event of the day is when Amy Hupp and her team at the MEEC take time for Captain the resident sea turtle’s lunchtime feeding! This is always a hit with families – and a great photo opportunity.

“You couldn’t pick a better place than the MEEC,” said Hupp, the Program Coordinator and Caretaker at NSU’s Marine Environmental Education Center at the Carpenter House. “Our mission is to provide outstanding marine education, interactive learning, and research with a focus on endangered sea turtles. Events like this are a perfect way to let the community know we’re here and help visitors understand how they, too, can be good stewards of the environment.”

Hupp said that she and her staff work to engage residents and visitors by increasing conservation awareness and action in a way that ultimately results in greater protection of the marine and coastal environments.

Harnessing the power of art and community, the festival emphasizes our interconnectedness with the ocean through creative and inspiring art. At the inaugural event last year, more than 1,500 visitors enjoyed a sunny day filled with nature inspired exhibits, as well as upcycled and recycled environmentally themed pieces.


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About Nova Southeastern University (NSU): Located in beautiful Fort Lauderdale, Florida, NSU is ranked among U.S. News & World Report’s Top 200 National Research Universities and is a dynamic, private research university providing high-quality educational and research programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and first-professional degree levels. Established in 1964, NSU now includes 16 colleges, the 215,000-square-foot Center for Collaborative Research, a private JK-12 grade school, the Mailman Segal Center for Human Development with specialists in Autism, the world-class NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale, and the Alvin Sherman Library, Research and Information Technology Center, which is Florida’s largest public library. NSU has campuses in Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Miami, Miramar, Orlando, Palm Beach, and Tampa, Florida, as well as San Juan, Puerto Rico, while maintaining a presence online globally. Classified as a research university with “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, NSU is one of only 50 universities nationwide to also be awarded Carnegie’s Community Engagement Classification, and is also the largest private institution in the United States that meets the U.S. Department of Education’s criteria as a Hispanic-serving Institution. For more information, please visit www.nova.edu.

About the Marine Environmental Education Center (MEEC): The center was opened with the desire to educate and delight locals and tourists alike through our “forever ambassador” green sea turtle, Captain, and the splendor of the coastal environment of South Florida. The MEEC was fostered from a partnership between Broward County Parks and Recreation and NSU, and is located on the historic grounds of the Carpenter House at Hollywood North Beach Park in Hollywood, FL. Along with Captain, the site features an interactive Interpretive Center with displays ranging on topics from sea turtle conservation to marine debris. Additionally, the center offers programs for the public on various coastal ecology and sea turtle topics, as well as programming specifically for school groups with a curriculum tailored to the marine sciences.



Joe Donzelli | Office of Media Relations
Nova Southeastern University
954-262-2159 (office) | 954-661-4571 (cell)
jdonzelli@nova.edu | www.nova.edu | @NSU_Joe


Manon Wiese
Free Our Seas & Beyond