Oceanarium makes a splash

Shedd’s revamped exhibits are a family aquatic paradise


Darren McRoy


Baby beluga in the deep blue sea—or rather, the Icy North where you’ll find the whales when Shedd Aquarium opens its remodeled Oceanarium on May 22. Icy North is one of four themed exhibits in the new Polar Play Zone, its most significant renovation for kids and families.

Polar Play Zone provides an interactive experience for kids, says Shedd spokesperson Melissa Kruth.

There’s Icy South, where they can don a penguin suit and clamber over a simulated penguin habitat while viewing the real birds just a few feet away. In Deep Ocean, kids can watch Pacific white-sided dolphins swim past them and in the Shallow Ocean kids splash in a tide pool and touch shallow-water animals.

Many barriers that kept kids from the animals have been removed. The Oceanarium also has undergone a facelift.

"There’s nobody that’s going to have a marine mammal show like we have," says spokesperson Roger Germann.

From June 14-19, admission to the Aquarium is free, with a discount on the Oceanarium and other special programs.

Shedd is located at 1200 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago. For information call (312) 939-2438 or visit www.shedd

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