Apr 3, 2014

Power and Progress - we're on a roll!

Have you heard about the Sea Israel Aquarium?
Have you heard about the Sea Israel Aquarium?

Hello Awesome Sea Israel Backers,

It’s time to give you some more information about what we’ve been up to over the last three months. We’re excited to share the highlights with you:

Support

With your support, our campaign has exceeded expectations - we now have raised well over $10,000! The Sea Israel Aquarium project continues to make progress and we couldn’t do this without you.

Construction

Following the problems caused by the blizzard in December, additional erosion occurred as a result of further rainy weather and one of the basement walls collapsed. Aside from the repair of these areas once the weather improved, our architects, civil engineers and geologists recommended the insertion of additional micropiles beneath all of the large tanks to prevent any possibility of movement or subsidence in the future. Although this is the sensible course of action to prevent any future problems, it does mean additional construction costs for the project.

On a more positive note, our exhibit theming and design is progressing very well and we can’t wait to see the planning and design come to fruition. Bringing these aquatic habitats to life for visitors will play a huge role in inspiring positive public action to save these precious ecosystems and animals.

Education Programming Update

In January we held a special Israel Arbor Day (Tu B’Shvat) event that served multiple purposes, one of which was raising awareness of the challenges facing Israel’s aquatic habitats by providing visitors with a taste of the Sea Israel Aquarium project. The event was called “Planting Our Way to the Sea” and included aquatic habitat displays and information tables where trained guides were on hand to educate visitors and answer questions.

Powering Up!

We are powered up in 2014 with a world-class team focused on building an Aquarium that exceeds your expectations. We are so excited to see this project start to take shape (just look at those construction pictures!) and cannot wait for the next opportunity to share our progress with you. Thank you all!

Warm regards,

Nicole Wexler and the Zoo/Aquarium Team

Learning more about the need for an Aquarium
Learning more about the need for an Aquarium
Learning about fascinating aquatic creatures
Learning about fascinating aquatic creatures
Our team members are excited about the Aquarium!
Our team members are excited about the Aquarium!
Artist's sketch of the Moray Eel exhibit design
Artist's sketch of the Moray Eel exhibit design
Artist's sketch of large Mediterranean Sea exhibit
Artist's sketch of large Mediterranean Sea exhibit
Artist's sketch of large Red Sea exhibit
Artist's sketch of large Red Sea exhibit
Our Management Team on a construction site visit
Our Management Team on a construction site visit
The project taking shape
The project taking shape
Construction in progress
Construction in progress
Mar 20, 2014

Planting our way to Spring

Planting a Tree on Arbor Day
Planting a Tree on Arbor Day

Thank You!

Thanks to wonderful supporters like you, the Biblical Zoo in Jerusalem has raised $600 USD towards replacing the many trees lost in the December blizzard.

The cleanup operation after the blizzard was time-consuming and costly, but we managed it thanks to our dedicated team of staff and volunteers.

And here's some more good news:

With the money received from our GlobalGiving supporters, and the mobilization of our awesome local community who all came together to help us on Israel’s national arbor day (Tu B’Shvat in Hebrew), over 500 saplings have been planted.

In addition, we gained 40 mature multi-stemmed oak trees by saving them from destruction when they were being uprooted for a property development at Tzur Hadassah near Jerusalem.

Keep your eye on the prize –

The damage to the Zoo’s vegetation was serious and recovery will take many years unless we can purchase more mature trees to replace all of those that were lost.

But, thanks to all of you, we are getting there! Thanks so much for your generosity and support in our time of need. Spring colors are blooming all over the Zoo at the moment - come and enjoy them with us!

Warm Regards,

The Biblical Zoo Team

It's Never too Soon to Plant a Tree
It's Never too Soon to Plant a Tree
Greening the Zoo
Greening the Zoo
New Tree, New Hope
New Tree, New Hope
Saplings Ready for Planting
Saplings Ready for Planting
A Great Family Activity
A Great Family Activity
Connecting with Nature
Connecting with Nature
Groundskeeping Staff Lead the Tree Planting Effort
Groundskeeping Staff Lead the Tree Planting Effort
The Whole Community Joins the Tree Planting Effort
The Whole Community Joins the Tree Planting Effort
Cleanup after the Blizzard
Cleanup after the Blizzard
Volunteers assist Staff with Cleanup
Volunteers assist Staff with Cleanup
Blizzard Cleanup Operation
Blizzard Cleanup Operation
Newspaper Article on the Effects of the Blizzard
Newspaper Article on the Effects of the Blizzard
Jan 13, 2014

Sea Israel - We're Getting There

We're on our way to Sea Israel!
We're on our way to Sea Israel!

Thanks to wonderful backers like you, we have raised almost $10,000 towards the Sea Israel Aquarium! You have opened your hearts to us and we are so very grateful for your generosity and support.

The start of 2014 sees us well on our way to realizing this project. As with all journeys, the road is hardly ever smooth - but the good news is that we have an awesome team committed to bringing this project to fruition. Fortunately, challenges are also tempered by great progress being made in other areas.

Construction Update

You may have heard about the blizzard that hit Jerusalem in December 2013 - the worst in over a century. As you can imagine, here in the Middle East we're just not used to that kind of weather! Unfortunately, the blizzard hit just after the site was dug and prepared for the installation of the main pylons. A large pool of water and snow collected in the retaining area causing strain on and some collapse of the retaining walls. The flooding requires draining, and repairs will need to be made as a result of the damage. For two weeks, it was too dangerous to allow workers back on the construction site but work has now resumed. Although this will cause a delay to construction of the main aquarium facility, our team is saving as much time as possible by juggling the order of the construction schedule and working instead on the peripheral buildings such as the ticket booths and office buildings while the main site is drained and repaired.

Education Programming Update

The development of education programs is coming along nicely. We are about to launch our interactive website to provide information about local aquatic species and habitats. We’ll let you know as soon as it goes live.

Work has also begun on the design of engaging educational signage for the future aquarium.

We've started presenting aquatic habitat ecological displays and workshops at the zoo to inspire visitors to learn and do their part towards conserving our oceans, lakes, rivers and wetlands.

Looking Forward

We aim to open the doors to the Sea Israel Aquarium in 2015. We'll be sure to keep you posted on our progress, so you’re always aware of what’s happening at every stage.

Again, thanks so much for being a part of this project’s success. We are all so excited to bring such a great facility into being and – more importantly – to inspire our visitors to value the enviroment. A significant part of that success will belong to people like you, who believed in this cause from the beginning.

Warm Regards,

 Nicole Wexler and the Zoo/Aquarium Team

Educational Displays and Workshops
Educational Displays and Workshops
Education materials
Education materials
Educational signage
Educational signage
Construction site flooding
Construction site flooding
Draining and repair required...
Draining and repair required...

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