Birch Aquarium Announces ‘Science Night’ Lineup

Wednesday happy hours bring Scripps Science to the forefront beginning July 19.

Birch Aquarium’s Blue Beach Happy Hours, which officially kick off tonight, just got even better with the addition of Science Nights on Wednesday evenings beginning July 19. 

During Science Nights, guests can sip and snack alongside Scripps Oceanography scientists as they dive into the details of their research in a fun format, perfect for all ages. With topics including sharks, plankton, penguins and heatwaves, guests will get a taste of some of the incredible research taking place at Scripps and talk with the people behind it. 

The aquarium’s family-friendly happy hours take place Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings in July and August on Blue Beach, a new space that invites guests to connect with the ocean and each other. Happy Hours take place from 5 to 6:30 p.m. and include music, outdoor games and stunning ocean views. 

Science Night Lineup: 

Wednesday, July 19 

Tarik Benmarhnia and Sasha Gershunov 

Join researchers from the SoCal Heat Hub for a discussion on heat waves in coastal Southern California, their health impacts and how we can protect people from extreme heat in a warming world. 

Wednesday, July 26

 Jules Jaffe and Peter Franks

Known for their innovative research on ocean ecosystems, these scientists will discuss new technologies for observing interactions between the living ocean and the physical ocean, including tiny living plankton and micro-turbulence. Wednesday, Aug. 2 Dovi Kacev and Brendan Talwar If you love sharks, you won’t want to miss these researchers sharing their knowledge of shark ecology, how they track sharks in the wild, and the research that informs protection of habitats and ocean animals. 

Wednesday, Aug. 9

Dante Capone and Anya Stajner

Learn more about the science happening just off our coast! Dante and Anya will share their work studying some of the smallest inhabitants of the California Current Ecosystem — plankton — and describe how what happens on land can affect them.

Wednesday, Aug. 16 

Shailja Gangrade and Jamee Adams

Join Scripps emerging scientists Shailja and Jamee to explore the diverse community of tiny drifters, or plankton, in ocean currents along the California coast and how ocean chemistry shapes their lives. 

Wednesday, Aug. 23

Paul Ponganis, Jessie Kendall-Bar and Tammy Russell

 Meet the scientists featured in the Research Station in Beyster Family Little Blue Penguins. Learn about their work studying the extreme physiology of penguins, seals and whales that enables their deep diving behavior and life underwater. 

Wednesday, Aug. 30 

Dovi Kacev and Rosa Runcie 

Explore the secret lives of sharks with Dovi and Rosa who study the ecology, conservation and management of sharks off the coast of California and western Mexico. 

Blue Beach Happy hours take place Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings through August 30. The Happy Hours are included in the cost of admission, with food and beverage for sale by The French Gourmet. 

Blue Beach features a 4,500-square-foot floor mural depicting the bathymetry (or map of the depth) of the underwater canyons off La Jolla Shores, plus pedal-powered music from Rock the Bike, hammock chairs, and big blue blocks from Imagination Playground — all surrounded by stunning ocean views. It is located on the south plaza near Shark Shores and the aquarium’s famed Shark Head photo op. 

Birch Aquarium is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Labor Day. Tickets are $24.95 for adults and $19.95 for children. Annual Memberships are also available. Please note that advanced reservations are required and the aquarium occasionally closes early for special events.