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Cause Area

  • Animals
  • Children & Youth
  • Education & Literacy
  • Environment
  • Sports & Recreation


50 SAN JUAN STAVILA BEACH, CA 93424 United States

Organization Information

Mission Statement

The mission of The Central Coast Aquarium is to cultivate a community dedicated to ocean stewardship through education, engagement, and action. We believe that by increasing appreciation for the ocean, its marine life, and our local environment, we encourage an active commitment to its conservation and preservation.


For 27 years, the Central Coast Aquarium has provided San Luis Obispo County with hands-on marine science education. CCA relies heavily on our volunteer base for support with aquaristing, animal husbandry, exhibit hall docenting, and special events.

Working closely with our Director of Husbandry and staff aquarist(s), aquarist volunteers gain valuable knowledge and skills in animal husbandry, equipment maintenance, water quality management, and more. Our volunteers learn the fascinating biology and ecology of many local marine species and generously contribute their time to feeding animals, cleaning tanks, and maintaining safe and enriching enclosures for our marine life. Student volunteers may obtain course credit for their work at CCA, and it is our goal to offer our aquaristing volunteers as much training as possible for them to utilize in future professional opportunities.

Exhibit hall volunteers act as educators in our two-room public aquarium, which showcases local marine life, with nearly 150 individuals representing 45 native species currently housed in the aquarium. Docents engage with visitors to provide insightful and intriguing information on each exhibit and its inhabitants, answering questions and pointing out some of our more cryptic creatures. Visitors can also enjoy hands-on interactions with our intertidal invertebrates and swell sharks, observe scheduled animal feedings, and learn how to safely explore local habitats to observe wild marine organisms.


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