Judy Rae

Spotlight on history – Marineland reunion

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Until it’s closing 32 years ago. Los Angeles’ only ocean park was a celebration of our planet’s seas and the spectacle of life that called it home. A dedication to educate the public about the ocean and our need to be good stewards was woven into Marineland’s mission.

Last month, 92 “Marinelanders” from across the country gathered at Admiral Risty’s to reminisce about the park, which closed 32 years ago.

Admiral Risty, which closes this month after over 50 years, overlooked the park was the favored watering hole for Marinelanders after a busy summer day. 

“It was where we shared the days triumphs and challenges. When the Risty decided to close we knew we needed to get together at the Risty one more time. The private luncheon was followed by drinks at Terranea.  Friendships were renewed, memories shared and we celebrated what it means to be a Marinelander.

Many of us were there for the birth of Corky’s calves. And for those heart-wrenching times where the calves needed to be separated from Corky, for feeding. The stress calls crossed the species boundary and required no translation. We remembered working around the clock, in the water, to try to save injured risso dolphins and other marine mammals brought to us to treat.  We remembered working through the night during a major storm to sandbag the pump house by the pier to protect the park’s water supply.

All of these memories are what contribute to Marineland being part of our collective DNA.  When the park closed 32 years ago, we lost an amazing treasure. And a truly magical place.

Ed Capelle was Marineland’s sales manager.

by Ed Capelle


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