TPWD News Release — Sept. 1, 2010
LAKE JACKSON — Sea Center Texas (SCT) greeted its millionth visitor Wednesday, Jacob Thomas, a seven year old of Houston.
The surprised visitor received several prizes including a lifetime fishing license donated by The Dow Chemical Company, a lifetime membership to the Coastal Conservation Association donated by CCA, a customized rod and reel donated by John Regnier and other gifts donated by the Brazosport Convention & Visitors Council and Sea Center Texas.
SCT opened its marine aquarium and education center in March 1996 and the fish hatchery produced its first juvenile fish to stock in public waters in June 1997. The facility is operated by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) and admission is free. In addition to TPWD staff, more than 100 volunteers conduct tours, interact with guests at the "touch" tank, greet visitors and serve as cashiers in the gift shop.
Guests to SCT are treated to one of the best native marine fish displays in Texas. Aquariums showcase fish that are indigenous to the salt marshes, bays, near shore and open waters of the Texas coast. The "touch" tank provides an up close and personal experience with hermit crabs, sea anemones, stone crabs, snails, and blue crabs. On Wednesdays and Fridays at 10:30 a.m., guests have the opportunity to view the aquarium feedings.
About 20 percent of SCT’s million-plus visitors have toured the site’s fish hatchery. The saltwater hatchery has produced some 200 million red drum and 25 million spotted seatrout.
The center is one of three saltwater fish hatcheries operated by TPWD that as a group release more than 25 million juvenile fish each year to supplement natural fish populations and enhance fishing opportunities along the Texas coast.
SCT is located south of Houston in Lake Jackson, Texas off Highway 288 at 300 Medical Drive. Hours are Tues.-Sat. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sun. 1 – 4 p.m. Closed Mondays. For a listing of upcoming programs and events visit the TPWD website at http://tpwd.texas.gov/seacenter/. Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer can contact SCT by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 979-292-0100.