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On the Coast Magazine

Images of America: Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park

03/02/2015 12:24PM ● Published by Nancy Babin

Russel Chiodo & Krista Stouffer

Eight years ago, when Russ Chiodo and Krista Stouffer met as trainers on the job at Marineland St Augustine, FL, the world’s first oceanarium, they never imagined that their love and passion of marine animals would lead them to write a book. Now both employed at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park in Ft. Walton Beach, FL, with Krista in marketing and Russ as an aquarist, they felt compelled to share the amazing and innovative history of the third oldest marine park in the world.

For example, did you know that the Gulfarium was the first to use SCUBA gear rather than full helmet gear in a dive show? Or that it was the first to document a dolphin jumping 21 feet? The first to successfully hand raise a stranded bottlenose dolphin and the first to develop a synthetic milk formula for neonate bottlenose dolphins?

Because of their love marine life, their enchantment with the history of the Gulfarium, and their desire to learn more, Russ and Krista decided to write a book celebrating the Gulfarium. They interviewed former Gulfarium staff, searched the storage spaces of the Gulfarium, scoured the Florida State Archives, and chose photographs from local photographer Arturo Mennillo’s portfolio to compile the book Images of America: Gulfarium Marine Adventure

Park, published by Arcadia Publishing, chronicling the Gulfarium’s storied history as a premier attraction on Florida’s Emerald Coast.

This comprehensive pictorial book takes you back to the 1950s when the Gulfarium was just a dream of founders John “Brandy” Siebenaler and his wife, Marjorie. The pictures will draw you into the history and human triumph of what we now know as the Gulfarium. You will travel through this storybook gaining even more appreciation of what our amazing local aquarium has to offer.

To get more insight from the authors about the stories and characters in the book, along with the chance to purchase a signed copy, please visit www.gulfariumbook.com. You can purchase the book from the publisher at www.arcadiapublishing.com

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