Eyak Village students experience a night to remember at the Alaska Sea Life Center
By Janet Hoppe
Special to the Turnagain Times
A sleepover inside the Alaska Sea Life Center in Seward on Thursday, June 23, was a night to remember for the youth of the Native Village of Eyak. One of their nocturnal activities was a study in bioluminescence, the bright chemical light that can sometimes be seen in nature.
The youth were given sea fireflies from Japan. Denise Olsen said they were brown and the size of small beads. During the experiment they crushed the fireflies and added water to the pieces. The water helped change the firefly pieces into a bright blue ink that was used to paint on their faces. Also during the night,
Nadia Hotfhine dissected a squid with her over night friends. “It was gross and was fishy,” she said. “It had three hearts that were yellow.”
Not all the fun was had overnight. The Native Village of Eyak group went to Seward from Cordova as part of the Elder and Youth program, a NVE program that brings Elders and Youth together to share and experience. Ages came together when Stanley Makarka and Logan Arnold shared the same amazement.
“I’ve seen the biggest sea lion I’ve ever seen,” Makarka said.
Arnold added, “I am going to remember the giant sea lion, it was over 2,000 pounds.” And his sister, Lizzie, commented, “His name was Woody.”
In another large tank, everyone watched to see some of the Prince William Sound birds dive and swim. Marina Madison liked seeing the birds swimming under the water.
Stanley Makarka attended the outing with his wife, Helen. To sum up the experience, he talked about the young people and sharing the trip with them.
“They were very polite,” he said. “They took care of us. We tried to teach them a little of what we know. We saw all five types of salmon and the Sea Life Center helped us identify them. It was very interesting to see all the wildlife and lean about them.”
The group toured the Sea Life Center during the day and returned to Cordova after their overnight experience. Call the Native Village of Eyak for more information on their Elder and Youth program.
Photo: Mark Hoover and Daniel Nichols discussed photography and cameras on their return from the Sea Life Center.