Maui Ocean Center awards two winners, eight finalists in
“I Love Marine Life!” photo contest

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August 24, 2011, Ma‘alaea, Maui HI – With over 50 entries in Maui Ocean Center’s “I Love Marine Life” photo contest, judges and voters have completed the difficult task of awarding eight finalists and two winners.

Once ten finalists were selected, a panel of judges selected the Judges Choice winner. The ten finalists were then displayed at the Aquarium for seven days, giving visitors to the park a chance to cast their vote for the People’s Choice winner.

The finalist are Amita Schmidt with a photo of a dolphin, Dawn Akie with a photo of two sting rays, Jenna Long with a photo of her son in front of the Living Reef exhibit, David Williams with a photo of a frogfish and submarine, Dawn Eshelman with a photo of a Hawaiian swimming crab, James Tobin with a photo of a barracuda and cleaner wrasse, Steven Jenness with a photo of a harlequin shrimp, and Faith Giesick with a photo of a flatfish. The Judges Choice winner is Tammy Brehio with a photo of a hermit crab and the People’s Choice winner is Cheryl King with a photo of a hawksbill turtle hatchling.

“The contest was an exciting process and we were thrilled with the number of entries,” says Kate Zolezzi, General Manager at Maui Ocean Center. “The challenge was narrowing down the finalists and winners! We truly appreciate all who entered the contest and enjoyed seeing the enthusiasm shared by all for Hawai‘i’s precious marine life”

Each finalist will receive a 1-day Journey Pass to Maui Ocean Center and admission to the Opening Night Gala of the Maui Photo Festival on Wednesday, August 24, 2011 where their photos will be part of the Gala’s slide show. The winners will receive an Annual Journey Pass to Maui Ocean Center and a full pass to the Maui Photo Festival held August 24-28, 2011 at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa. The winner’s photos will also be part of the Opening Night Gala slide show.

Finalist and winning entries will be displayed in Maui Ocean Center’s retail plaza through Labor Day, September 5, 2011 and on the Aquarium’s website www.mauioceancenter.com.

The contest was made possible through the over 50 participants that submitted photos and the organizers of the Maui Photo Festival. More information on the festival can be found at www.mauiphotofestival.com.

The mission of Maui Ocean Center is to foster understanding, wonder and respect for Hawaii’s marine life. This state-of-the-art aquarium was named “Top-Rated Attraction in Hawaii” by Zagat Survey US Family Travel Guide, “Leader In Responsible Tourism” on the Top 100 Blue List by Islands Magazine, and “Best Value Family Attraction in Maui” in Up! Magazine. Open daily from 9 to 5, and from 9 to 6 in July and August. For more information please contact the Maui Ocean Center: 192 Ma‘alaea Road; Ma‘alaea, HI 96793; telephone (808)270-7000, facsimile (808)270-7070, e-mail info@mauioceancenter.com or visit www.mauioceancenter.com.