Speakers Series to Feature Dr. Peter Auster on Dec. 13


Mystic, Conn. (December 6, 2017): At a time when monuments across the nation are threatened, Mystic Aquarium and La Grua Center are teaming up to showcase the science and scenery of New England’s own marine national monument.  Our Blue Park: A Scientist’s Stroll through the Northeast Canyons & Seamounts Marine National Monument will be held on Wednesday, December 13 from 6:00pm - 7:00pm at La Grua Center in Stonington.

Designated by President Barack Obama in September 2016, the Northeast Canyons & Seamounts is the first marine national monument in the U.S. Atlantic Ocean. Mystic Aquarium’s Dr. Peter Auster was instrumental in providing the scientific rationale for conservation of the area.

“These canyons and seamounts are one of the best remaining undisturbed ecosystems in the North Atlantic,” said Auster. “They will serve as a laboratory to study fragile, vulnerable, and largely untrammeled nature”.

Auster believes its ongoing protection is vital to current and future scientific research. 

Featuring three underwater canyons and four seamounts, the monument is a biodiversity hot-spot. Currently protected from commercial extractive activities, this unique landscape supports an incredible diversity of marine life — including endangered whales, sea turtles, seabirds and fragile deep-sea corals.

With words and pictures, Senior Research Scientist at Mystic Aquarium Dr. Peter Auster will recount research on the ecology of this region at the edge of our continental shelf and beyond – conducted with ships, submersibles and aircraft – and the otherworldly animals that live there. He will also describe why this is such a special place for marine wildlife and worthy of continued protection.

Admission with a suggested $5 donation to La Grua Center, located at 32 Water Street in Stonington. Free parking is available in the lot off Water Street at Stonington Commons.


Founded in 2007, La Grua Center is a nonprofit cultural center in Stonington Borough offering a wide variety of concerts, lectures, and art exhibitions in an intimate, acoustically distinctive space flooded with natural light and vaulted ceilings. La Grua Center is also a venue for classes, meetings, celebrations, and other community activities. Its mission is to engage community through arts and culture, and its vision is an enriched cultural life for all in the region. Learn more at


Mystic Aquarium, a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization, is counted among the nation’s leading aquariums with more than 300 species and an extensive collection of marine mammals, including New England’s only belugas. Mystic Aquarium has been a pioneer in offering guests a variety of up close encounters with a wide range of marine animals. The mission of Mystic Aquarium is to inspire people to care for and protect our ocean planet through conservation, education and research. Mystic Aquarium receives major support from The Coca-Cola Company, Foxwoods Resort Casino, Resorts World Sentosa and United Technologies Corporation. Learn more at

Media Contact: Dale Wolbrink, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.860.694.9011