Monterey Bay Aquarium Celebrates 35 Years; Offers Free Admission to Local Tri-County Residents

Nov 19, 2019

Monterey Bay Aquarium marks 35 years of support from the tri-county region by opening its doors to the community, during the aquarium’s Community Open House. Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito County residents receive free admission to the aquarium from Saturday, December 7, through Sunday, December 15.

Aquarium guests must present a photo ID and proof of current Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito County residence at the main entrance to receive free admission. Current student identification from any university or community college located within any of these counties, utility bills or Monterey-Salinas Transit, Santa Cruz Metro and San Benito County Express monthly bus passes are also valid proof of residence. Free admission is good for regular aquarium hours, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Visitors from outside Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito County – including relatives or friends of local residents – can accompany local residents, but will be charged regular admission fees.

Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Community Open House is made possible in part by the support of its Business Partners, which it will recognize during a private event on Wednesday, December 11. The reception honors the following businesses and community organizations that have played key roles in advancing ocean conservation in the region via their actions and contributions.

  • Community Partners:
    Monterey Bay Aquarium thanks the Cities of Pacific Grove and Monterey, whose staff and elected officials have supported its mission for 35 years. From operational permits to storm water management to protect the Bay, to banning single-use plastics and co-hosting nearly two million visitors every year, the aquarium values its collaborative working relationship with the cities.
  • Education Partner:
    Monterey Bay Aquarium honors Lorena Gonzalez, Education Manager of Santa Cruz County Head Start, for her longtime support and involvement in our Splash Zone Education program. The program is approaching 20 years of partnership with Monterey and Santa Cruz County Head Start.
  • Business Partners:
    ​This year Monterey Bay Aquarium recognizes the 12 businesses that have made contributions every year since it opened 35 years ago in 1984. This commitment is critical to the aquarium’s access programs that admit more than 800,000 people in the community to the aquarium free of charge, including underserved audiences who visit through its Free to Learn, Shelf to Shore and Community Open House programs. The 12 charter business partners include the following:
    • AT&T California
    • Bank of America Charitable Foundation
    • Big Creek Lumber Company
    • Carmel Development Company
    • Carmel Insurance Agency
    • Finch Montgomery Wright P.C.
    • Granite Construction
    • Nancy Eccles and Homer M. Hayward Family Foundation
    • PG&E
    • Pebble Beach Company Foundation
    • Struve Financial & Insurance Services
    • Richard T. Dauphine, M.D., Center for the Knee and Shoulder

More information about the aquarium’s Community Open House is available at its website:

About Monterey Bay Aquarium
With a mission to inspire conservation of the ocean, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is the most admired aquarium in the United States, a leader in science education, and a voice for ocean conservation through comprehensive programs in marine science and public policy. Everything we do works in concert to protect the future of our blue planet. More information at

Download this release as a PDF

The mission of the nonprofit Monterey Bay Aquarium is to inspire conservation of the ocean.