Clownfish, Jellyfish exhibits to bring ‘wow factor’

Clownfish, Jellyfish exhibits to bring ‘wow factor’

The Oklahoma Aquarium has done what Marlin and Dory did back in 2003, find Nemo.

The Jenks Aquarium Authority approved new Clownfish and Jellyfish exhibits for the Oklahoma Aquarium Monday at the Jenks Aquarium Authority Meetin gat the Jenks City Hall Building.

Oklahoma Aquarium Chief Operating Officer Kenny Alexopoulos said the new exhibits will provide a “wow factor” in the aquarium that is “much needed”.

The new exhibits will join the Secret World of the Octopus exhibit as new attractions for Oklahoma’s only aquarium. The new Octopus exhibit was paid for in full through Octopus bracelets sold at the aquarium and the JAA hopes similar bracelets will do the same for the new Clownfish and Jellyfish exhibits.

If the bracelets do not cover the cost of construction for the new attractions, the JAA and City of Jenks have allocated $300,000 to be available if needed.

City Manager Chris Shrout said he is doubtful any of that $300,000 will be needed to help fund the new projects.

Construction on the new exhibits will begin immediately.

Also approved at the Monday Jenks Aquarium Authority Meeting was a hike in membership fees across the board.

There will be an additional $5 added to each level of membership beginning Oct. 1.

“We believe the $5 increase is justified with the investment in the new outdoor playground, the new exhibits (Polynesian Reef and Sea Turtle Island) and upcoming exhibits, such as the Secret World of the Octopus, which opens in early 2020,” Alexopoulos said. “The last time membership prices were increased was in March of 2014.”

Membership level cost increase breakdown:

-Individual $65 to $70

-Family $135 to $140

-Family Plus $195 to $200

-Premier $275 to $280

The $5 price increase across the board is expected to increase membership revenue $15 to $20,000 per year. In fiscal year 2018/2019, membership revenue totaled $499,720.37. There were a total of 4,997 memberships sold with the most popular being the Family Membership at 2,751 sold.

Kyle Salomon

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