Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Georgia Sea Turtle Center and the Jekyll Island Authority To Celebrate Sea Turtles With the Annual Shell-E-Bration, Nest Fest and Turtle Crawl Triathlon

/PRNewswire/ -- As coastal Georgia begins to welcome in warmer weather, it is also that time of year to welcome a very special annual visitor to Jekyll Island- the sea turtle! Nesting season begins mid-May and continues through August and hundreds of these amazing sea creatures come home to nest on Jekyll Island's sprawling beaches.

Jekyll Island is home to the internationally-acclaimed Georgia Sea Turtle Center (GSTC), an operating sea turtle rehabilitation facility open to the public which is operated by the Jekyll Island Authority, and encourages sea turtle education and preservation through activities and programs and research. The Georgia Sea Turtle Center (GSTC) is dedicated to monitoring the turtles during nesting season and protecting both the turtles and their nests.

Beginning in early spring, Jekyll Island will be celebrating sea turtles with a variety of activities and programs to educate kids and their families on these endangered species. The activities are modestly priced, and many are free and open to the public.

Shell-e-brate Earth Day - Sat., April 17: Guests and residents will celebrate Earth Day this year with the Georgia Sea Turtle Center at the third annual Shell-e-brate Earth Day family festival! From eco-friendly entertainment to earth-tastic arts and crafts, this family fun day has something to offer everyone. This event is free with general admission to the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.

Nest Fest - May 10-15: Undoubtedly one of the most exciting times of the year at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center is the sea turtle nesting season. This years' annual Nest Fest marks the eighth anniversary of this fantastic week-long celebration aimed at educating both children and adults on sea turtles, coastal ecology and eco-friendly behavior. To make reservations for any of the Nest Fest events, please contact the Georgia Sea Turtle Center at 912-635-4444.

Turtle Crawl Triathlon - Sat., May 15: The Jekyll Island Turtle Crawl Triathlon is a chance for participants of all skill levels to come together and enjoy an afternoon on the coast. A full triathlon is offered for the most ambitious of athletes. The race begins with a 1.5 mile swim, then continues to a 40K bike ride and finishes up with a 10K run. For those wanting a more leisurely event, the Sprint Triathlon offers a 600 yard swim, 20K bike ride and a 5K run. A 5K Fun Run/Walk will offer a more relaxed way to benefit the GSTC. A portion of the proceeds go to benefit the GSTC on Jekyll Island.

More about the Georgia Sea Turtle Center:

The internationally-acclaimed Georgia Sea Turtle Center (GSTC) is located on a barrier island off the coast of Georgia - Jekyll Island. In addition to rehabilitating injured and ill sea turtles, as well as educating the public and conducting research, the GSTC is dedicated to monitoring the turtles during nesting season and protecting them and their nests during this crucial time as the saga of Georgia's sea turtles plays out every summer on the beaches of Jekyll Island. Jekyll, a state-owned island, has been largely preserved in its natural state, and is a favorite location where many of these threatened and endangered turtles come to nest and hatch. Nest Fest and the Turtle Crawl Triathlon are supported by a grant from the Georgia Tourism Foundation.

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