© 2022 KLCC

136 W 8th Ave
Eugene OR 97401

Contact Us

FCC Applications
Oregon's Willamette Valley seen from Eugene
NPR for Oregonians
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

The Oregon Coast Aquarium turns 30!

Oregon Coast Aquarium
Sally Compton
Oregon Coast Aquarium
The Oregon Coast Aquarium in 2020, in Newport, OR.

On Monday, the Oregon Coast Aquarium turns 30!

The Aquarium was originally founded in 1992 as a way to stimulate the economy in the Yaquina Bay area, while also serving year-round residents. Within nine months of opening, it’d hosted its first million visitors.

In 1996, the Aquarium gained international recognition for the role it played in rehabilitating Keiko, the world-renowned orca from the movie “Free Willy.” After Keiko’s departure two years later, the facility transformed his habitat into "Passages of the Deep," an acrylic tunnel snaking through three different ocean habitats.

The Aquarium has received accreditation by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums,’ denoting the highest standard of animal care and welfare.