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Find out why Georgia Aquarium volunteers keep coming back

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Behind the scenes at the Aquarium

Georgia Aquarium opened in 2005 and has utilized a vast network of volunteers ever since. Currently there are more than 1,100 volunteers helping with everything from cleaning the Ocean Voyager exhibit built by The Home Depot to greeting guests with a smile and a map as they enter the Aquarium.

The selfless nature of volunteers tends to go unnoticed by the public, however those who work behind the scenes get an up-close view of it every day. The work volunteers do is invaluable and ensures the millions of people who enjoy the exhibits have the opportunity to do so.

The following are personal accounts of some of Georgia Aquarium’s volunteers, who discuss what makes volunteering so rewarding.

Heidi Groom, 12,704 hours volunteered

Groom began volunteering in hopes of learning more about marine biology, as her youngest daughter was interested in majoring in the subject in college. Ten years later she has the most volunteer hours of anyone at Georgia Aquarium, thanks in large part to her creating intricate culinary ice creations made specifically for sea otters from their usual diet of shellfish.

On how her famous ice enrichments came to be

“We started off by making a birthday cake for one of the baby otters, but then it became bigger. So then we started into Halloween and made a haunted house. We then made a Thanksgiving dinner plate, and we started thinking, ‘Oh, we can make Fourth of July hotdogs!’”

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About Barry G. Morris

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