• Purple, yellow, gold and orange sponges and soft corals wave against a turquioise sea.

    Biscayne

    National Park Florida

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  • Boat Tours, Paddle-craft Rentals and Select Conveniences Temporarily Unavailable

    Glass-bottom, snorkel, diving and island boat tours, and rentals for canoes and other paddle-craft, are temporarily unavailable. The park is working to resolve the issue as soon as possible and regrets the inconvenience. Limited snack items are available.

"The Most Waterful Time of the Year!" Kicks off Second Decade of Biscayne National Park's Family Fun Fest

Two staffmembers assist two young boys interpret a shipwreck map at Family Fun Fest.
Everyone gets individualized attention at Biscayne's Family Fun Fest.
Thomas M. Strom

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News Release Date: December 7, 2010
Contact: Gary Bremen, 305-230-1144, x007

Get in the holiday spirit as Biscayne National Park kicks off the second decade of the multi-award- winning Family Fun Fest! In a season of so much hustle and bustle, taking time to slow down and appreciate the beauty of the natural world can be a much-needed break. The free event takes place on Sunday, December 12, 2010 at the park's Dante Fascell Visitor Center from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Stations located around the visitor center provide a variety of holiday-themed interactive and hands-on activities, including:  

  • Christmas Tree Worms — Make a keepsake ornament featuring one of the reef's most colorful residents!
  • Deck the Claws! — What is the decorator crab using to trim his shell this season?
  • A Biscayne Carol — It's a Biscayne twist on a Dickens classic!
  • I Resolve… — Make an eco-resolution for the New Year and add it to the Resolution Tree!
  • Kissing Trees — Hunt for clues to discover the identity of one of the park's rarest plants!

Participants will receive a paper passport to be punched at each station as they complete the activities. Those who complete all five activities will earn a special button to help remember the day, and those who earn five buttons in a season will receive a Family Fun Fest Fanatic award in April. Participants will also receive a native poinsettia plant to take home and enjoy throughout the year.

Family Fun Fest takes place on the second Sunday of every month from December through April. The series is made possible through a generous grant from the Captain Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge and the Bobby Duryea Memorial Fund at the South Florida National Parks Trust. Additional support this month comes from Pro Native Consulting, the Biscayne Bay Aquatic Preserves and a host of dedicated volunteers.

Future Family Fun Fest events in the 2010-2011 season are:

  • Musical Misfits — January 9
    What if a guitarfish, a fiddler crab, a trumpetfish and a spotted drum formed a band?
  • Keeping Up with the Joneses — February 13
    Celebrate "Black History Month" with a look back at the Jones Family of Porgy Key.
  • Alien Invaders — March 13
    Biscayne is being invaded by aliens, but they're not little green men from another planet!
  • BioBlitz Rewind — April 10
    Last April, thousands of people helped identify over 800 different species of plants and animals in just 24 hours as part of the National Geographic BioBlitz. What did we learn? Come find out!

The Dante Fascell Visitor Center is located at 9700 SW 328 Street, nine miles east of Homestead, Florida. Call 305-230-7275, extension 555 for more information.

Did You Know?

Stiltsville in Blue © Brian Call

Stiltsville is a collection of colorful and battered buildings in the shallows at the northern end of Biscayne National Park. The history of buildings like these goes back to the 1930s when a community of squatters took hold here. More...