Shinnecock Bay Hope Spot: Inaugural Event
June 9, 2023
Shinnecock Bay was designated as a global Hope Spot in June 2022.
On June 9th, 2023, IOCS hosted a celebration commemorating the Hope Spot's first anniversary at the Stony Brook Southampton Marine Science Center. The event recognized Shinnecock Bay's ecological and cultural importance to Long Island and the region, and shows how the bay is a uniting force for many stakeholders. The goal of the event was to raise awareness of the Shinnecock Hope Spot, communicate the importance of marine science, technology, and conservation, and discuss the vision of what the Shinnecock Bay Hope Spot can achieve in the future.
The day-long celebration began with a ribbon cutting ceremony featuring:
Ellen Pikitch, Endowed Professor of Ocean Conservation Science at SoMAS and IOCS Executive Director
Sylvia Earle, Founder and Chair of Mission Blue, and world-renowned environmental marine scientist
Paul Shepson, Dean of SoMAS, Stony Brook University
Christopher Gobler, Endowed Chair of Coastal Ecology and Conservation at SoMAS
Kelsey Leonard, Assistant Professor at the University of Waterloo and Shinnecock Indian Nation
Erika Heine Montague, Schmidt Marine Technology Partners
Ed Warner, Southampton Town Trustee
Photos by Mark Bryon Brown
Following the ceremony, IOCS organized marine station laboratory tours and a poster session, showcasing cutting edge scientific research and experiments being done by the Pikitch and Gobler labs, and where graduate students were on hand to explain their projects in detail.
Schmidt Marine Technology Partners led technology demonstrations at the docks and aboard our research vessels, showing how remotely operated technologies can advance ocean observing and make it more affordable. Four companies brought and deployed their devices:
Some of these devices began collecting real time data immediately, and Sofar and Hononu generously donated a device for longer term data collection in Shinnecock Bay!
The day ended with an event in Duke Lecture Hall. The Shinnecock Indian Nation welcomed attendees with traditional singing and dancing performed by a youth dance troupe, and Dr. Sylvia Earle gave an inspiring keynote address calling for everyone to "dive in and do what they can" -- a founding principle of her organization Mission Blue.
The event was part of The Explorers Club's 2023 World Oceans Week programming.
Photos by John Griffin for Stony Brook University