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Early closure alert:
The Aquarium will close early on Monday, September 24. Last admission at noon; exhibits close at 1pm. The Aquarium café will be closed all day.

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Beach Naturalist program

Beach Naturalist program

Stroll along almost any Seattle beach during low tide on a summer weekend and you'll see that the shore is alive!

Not only will you witness Puget Sound's multitude of marine plants and animals, you'll also see beach naturalists: advocates for these living wonders sharing their knowledge with beachgoers.

Beach naturalists are local citizens who care about Puget Sound beaches and want to help protect them. More than 100 have volunteered to help people learn about and enjoy area shorelines. Beach naturalists know their beaches: they can help you enjoy the habitat without harming it; tell you what sea stars eat; explain why barnacles stand on their heads; describe how moon snails lay their eggs; and so much more. "The enthusiasm and excitement of our beach naturalists transfers directly to the public—it's a wonderful, infectious thing!" beams Janice Mathisen, community outreach coordinator at the Seattle Aquarium. "To be able to meet a family and educate them on what a treasure we have here in Puget Sound is amazing.

Join trained volunteers and explore the beach with us! Look for signs at the beaches listed on the upcoming dates and times below. Click here for beach directions.

Richmond Beach, Carkeek Park, Golden Gardens, South Alki, Lincoln Park, Seahurst Park and Saltwater State Park
Olympic Sculpture Park Beach
Des Moines Beach Park
Dash Point State Park
Redondo Beach

Interested in becoming a beach naturalist volunteer?

Please email with your name and contact information. We will recruit and contact new volunteers in early 2019.


Beach naturalists: log in and view training materials.


Beach etiquette guides:


Get Social


  • AMGEN Foundation
  • Forum for SB WRIA 8 (Lake Washington/Cedar/Sammamish Watershed)
  • King County Flood Control District
  • Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation
  • Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
  • Watershed Ecosystem Forum for WRIA 9
  • The City of Burien
  • The City of Des Moines
  • The City of Shoreline