As the much-anticipated release of Dolphin Tale draws closer, a record-breaking number of guests are visiting the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, where the Warner Bros blockbuster was filmed to meet the movie’s star, Winter. This past July, 32,453 guests visited the Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA), according to recently released statistics. In addition to being one of the country’s preeminent marine rehabilitation facilities, the CMA is home to Winter, the tailless dolphin whose story of survival is the inspiration behind the movie.
With less than two months to go before the release of Dolphin Tale, and previews currently in theaters people are flocking to the aquarium. This July’s visitor numbers represent a 39% increase from last year’s and a pattern of steady growth over the past five years.
Dolphin Tale is based on Winter’s true story of survival, learning to survive and thrive after the loss of her tail. The 3D blockbuster stars Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd and Harry Connick Jr. alongside the real Winter and was shot on location at the CMA. At the Aquarium, fans from all over the world are welcome to meet and interact with the heroic dolphin as well as see many of the intact sets from the movie.
In light of the recent increased visitors and notoriety from the film, the CMA has embarked on a path toward a $12 million expansion aimed at allowing the facility to care for more injured animals as well as the space necessary to welcome and educate more guests. The CMA continues to operate true to its core mission to Rescue, Rehabilitate and Release marine animals.
As well as being home to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, the City of Clearwater is a year-round beach destination on Florida’s acclaimed Gulf coast, consistently hailed as one of the top beaches in the US. Clearwater offers extensive outdoor activities both on land and at sea as well as a wide range of dining and accommodation options. Many local properties are offering special packages inviting people to visit Winter, all of which will be available on the CMA’s website, at www.seewinter.com.
More information about the City of Clearwater can be found at www.visitclearwaterflorida.com.
Clearwater is an ideal destination for travelers of all ages and interests, occupying prime real estate along Florida’s stunning Gulf Coast. As a top, year round location for both leisure and business, Clearwater boasts an endless supply of sun, warm weather, great dining and shopping, along with extensive outdoor activities both on land and at sea. Clearwater Beach is consistently ranked among America’s most beautiful and the city is also home to a wide variety of sporting and music events, including Philadelphia Phillies Spring Training and the annual Clearwater Jazz Holiday.