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Membership Appreciation Month

The theme Flourishing in Fall comes directly from how our members have continued to support our growth this last quarter. We cannot thank you enough for their commitment to be Stewards of the Watershed. To show you how much we care, September was dedicated as Membership Appreciation Month. This month included discounts at Columbia, a private tour of Leon Raymond Hubbs Junior Marine Fish Hatchery, a giveback night at Shake Shack in Carlsbad, oyster/mussel tasting with wine at the Carlsbad Aquafarm.

The Hubbs Hatchery Tour gave a group of members a chance to see the impact they make firsthand. Hubbs incredible guide, Karen, educated members on the innovative techniques and detail-oriented processes that allows them to produce over 350,000 juvenile white seabass annually. Since the Hatchery first opened, they have released about 2.7 million white seabass into the wild. The Agua Hedionda Lagoon, in fact, serves as one of their outgroups where the fish can transition to life outside the tanks in a protected space and then eventually take the plunge into the open waters. After a group photo, members made their way back to Garfield Street reveling at the intricacy of the operation and surprised, once again, at how important our local lagoon is in helping ecosystems and life to flourish.

The ever-generous Shake Shack in Carlsbad has our wealth of gratitude for hosting this giveback night and doing their part to ensure the Agua Hedionda Lagoon remains a safe and healthy space for all. Members were delighted as they watched their opportunities tumble around in the raffle ticket drum. As they reached in to find their fortune, members would uncover their prize: a menu freebie including the coveted Shack Burger, Root Beer Float and fries! With full bellies, members retreated home, excitement brewing for the next giveback night.

A celebration of Membership Appreciation Month would not be complete without a special sundowner. To kick off the evening, members visited the beverage stand where our lovely COO, Samantha Richter, stood by to provide the happy to the hour. An assortment of Pegasus wines was on offer, to be paired with the freshest mussels and oysters available in the city supplied by the Carlsbad Aquafarm!

An incredibly special offering exclusive to this evening and the AHLF members enjoying it, since the other 364 days in the year there is no alcohol permitted at the venue! In groups of 10-12 people each, members had the opportunity of an in-depth exploration of the premier aquaculture taking place daily at the Carlsbad Aquafarm.

Learning the nitty-gritty details of what it takes to produce over 2 million pounds of oysters and mussels annually, members were able to understand the amazing symbiotic relationship of the Aquafarm with the Agua Hedionda Lagoon. To bring the evening to a close, members were treated with some groovy tunes and dancing as the sun set on September.

- Written by: Hailie Brant

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