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Tennessee Aquarium Fishing for Volunteers

Docent Training Classes Begin September 14

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (August 13, 1998) -- Getting eye-to-eye with thousands of fascinating animals that swim, fly and crawl is an inspiring experience, just ask one of the Tennessee Aquarium docent volunteers. And every day, visitors are enlightened by the knowledge of docents who share little known facts and point out events occurring in the Aquarium that are rarely seen in nature.

In the Delta Country gallery, a young boy, eyes wild with excitement, comes nose-to-nose with the nearly 150-year-old alligator snapping turtle positioned against the glass. He squeals with delight as the docent points out the worm-like appendage on the tongue of the prehistoric creature. "The turtle opens its mouth wide and wiggles its tongue to lure fish his way," explains the docent.

Such rewarding experiences are a daily occurrence among Aquarium education volunteers, who play a vital role in enhancing visitor experiences at the freshwater lifecenter. With new interactive exhibits, including the new jellyfish gallery, volunteers engage visitors in a hands-on exploration of these fascinating creatures.

"We offer a great environment for adults who enjoy learning and interacting with people. Many of our volunteers enjoy the Aquarium so much that they are actively recruiting their friends," said Julie Piper, volunteer coordinator. "Our volunteers have a lot of fun, and we feel fortunate to have them on our team."

Be a part of Chattanooga's dynamic and changing downtown by serving as an education, administrative or special event volunteer at the Tennessee Aquarium. Aquarium volunteers complete a 10-session training course and volunteer 4 1/2 hours each week. Fall training begins September 14. For more information, contact the Tennessee Aquarium volunteer office at 785-3057.

The Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga is the largest freshwater aquarium in the world. Built with private contributions, this non-profit educational organization is dedicated to the understanding, conservation and enjoyment of the Tennessee River and related ecosystems.

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