New Visitor’s Center Sees First Tourist Season


Mary Donaldson/KMXT

The Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge has a brand new presence in downtown. The new visitor center has a variety of fun activities and exhibits for the public to check out. Mary Donaldson has more.

Kodiak’s new Wildlife Refuge and Visitors Center opened its doors for the first time in November. Since then, it has seen over 6,000 visitors through the doors. Now that summer has arrived, I called Tina Shaw, the visitor center manager, to see how the building’s first tourist season is shaping up.

She says so far it has been going very smoothly.

(Shaw 1 :13s “…a real draw for folks.”)

She says the crowds she sees at the visitor center range from children to elders, and with the state ferries and cruise ships arriving regularly, the traffic at the center has definitely risen.

Shaw says that there are plenty of exhibits, both temporary and permanent, that the public are welcome to come and view.

(Shaw 2 :28s “…to keep them out of the Wildlife Refuge.”)

She also says in addition to the exhibit hall, the downstairs has a few cetacean-themed installations.

(Shaw 3 :25s “…and bears just discovering it.”)

Shaw says in the future, there will be more photos and information on how the whale made its way to the visitor’s center.

She also says the refuge center now has a Kodiak chapter of a regional friends group, which aims to educate people all around the globe on the Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge. The group is also working on bringing a film festival to town.

(Shaw 4 :21s “…join our meetings.”)

The Kodiak Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center is located on Center Street across from both the Baranov Museum and the ferry terminal. The summer hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day, with free admission.

I’m Mary Donaldson.



HOST TAG: Those interested in joining the regional friends group can find out more by e-mailing kodiak friends-at-gmail-dot-com or by calling 487-2626.

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