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Tennessee State Aquarium

Facility planned by the Corpus Christi Aquarium Association Adopted: June 7, 1985
Texas state aquarium
Texas State Aquarium
© Bill Mann. Used with permission.

The aquarium planned by the Corpus Christi Aquarium Association, renamed the Texas State Aquarium Association (TSAA) in 1986, was adopted as the "Official Aquarium of Texas" when Governor Mark White signed House Concurrent Resolution No. 40 on June 7, 1985.

Often, a state will grant an official status to an item for economic reasons. In the case of the Texas State Aquarium, this is precisely what seems to have occurred. The State of Texas honored an entity that did not exist at the time but was in the planning stages.

Indeed, the economic forces in mind are noted in the resolution:

RESOLVED, That a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the Corpus Christi Aquarium Association in the hope that donations prompted by this legislative acknowledgement will quickly fill the association's coffers and speed the opening of this offspring of the coastal community's immagination.

The Texas State Aquarium opened its doors to the public in 1990, five years after it was designated the "Official Aquarium of Texas."

H.C.R. 40

CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

WHEREAS, The Corpus Christi Aquarium Association is raising $7 million for construction, to begin as early as this year, of a major public aquarium to benefit the residents of Corpus Christi, the people of Texas, and visitors to the Coastal Bend area; and

WHEREAS, The facility, which is to be built and operated without tax money, is to be the largest nonprofit aquarium on the Gulf Coast of the United States of America; and

WHEREAS, The aquarium, landscaped with surrounding parkland and dressed in shades of aqua and emerald, is to be situated along the city's shoreline, blending with the natural colors of Corpus Christi Bay, which is to serve as a backdrop; and

WHEREAS, Intended only in part for its entertainment value, it is to function as well as a community resource for cultural enrichment, as a laboratory for the study of aquatic life, and as a breeding and survival center for the preservation of threatened and endangered marine species; and

WHEREAS, Over 30 tank exhibits with an eventual capacity of 300,000 gallons are to be divided by theme to reflect the varied habitats of the Gulf of Mexico, Texas bays and estuaries, and the Caribbean Sea, respectively; and

WHEREAS, The prime attraction is to be a 56,000-gallon tank featuring sharks, groupers, barracuda, and tarpon, bordered by a 50-foot window that is to curve outward to give the viewer the impression of being under water; and

WHEREAS, The biological display tanks are to be complemented by multimedia exhibits focussing on offshore fishing fleets and mineral resource development; and

WHEREAS, Public educational activities associated with the facility are to include special classes, guest lectures, workshops, and mobile exhibits; and

WHEREAS, The aquarium will house graduate student research, enabling the observation of coral reefs, phytoplankton, and the cornucopia of other life that is nourished by bounty of the sea; and

WHEREAS, Its entertaining displays will attract a significant percentage of the 250,000 tourists who annually visit the Corpus Christi area in connection with recreational fishing, Padre Island vacations, and travel to Mexico and surrounding portions of the "Texas Riviera"; and

WHEREAS, The aquarium will introduce to the marine environment large numbers of those people who rarely or never have had the opportunity to directly confront the offshore world; and

WHEREAS, It will enlighten its many visitors as to the vital role that oceans and oceanic life-forms play in the sustenance and maintenance of human civilization; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the 69th Legislature of the State of Texas, in reflection of the excitement with which Texas awaits this unique contribution to its nature-based recreational assets, hereby designate the facility planned by the Corpus Christi Aquarium Association as the "Official Aquarium of Texas"; and, be it further

RESOLVED, That a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the Corpus Christi Aquarium Association in the hope that donations prompted by this legislative acknowledgement will quickly fill the association's coffers and speed the opening of this offspring of the coastal community's immagination.


Sources...

"House Concurrent Resolution No. 40." Reference Library of Texas. The State of Texas, 1985. Web. 28 Sep 2011. <http://www.lrl.state.tx.us/legis/billsearch/BillDetails.cfm?legSession=69-0&billTypeDetail=HCR&billnumberDetail=40>.

Shearer, Benjamin F. and Barbara S. State Names, Seals, Flags and Symbols: A Historical Guide Third Edition, Revised and Expanded. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 3 Sub edition, 2001.


Additional Information

Texas State Aquarium: Official website.

More symbols & emblems: Complete list of official Texas state symbols from NETSTATE.COM.

Fishes of the Gulf of Mexico: Texas, Louisiana, and Adjacent Waters
Fishes of the
Gulf of Mexico

H. Dickson Hoese
Richard H. Moore

Fishes of the Gulf of Mexico: Texas, Louisiana, and Adjacent Waters, by H. Dickson Hoese, Richard H. Moore. 416 pages. Publisher: Texas A&M University Press; 2 edition (January 1, 1998)

Revised in both format and content, this new edition of the standard Fishes of the Gulf of Mexico is based on two decades' research and greater attention to deepwater habitats.

The authors have revamped the taxonomic nomenclature for more than forty species and included new photos and information obtained from dives around reefs and new offshore oil structures. Other habitat conditions have changed because of severe freezes, hurricanes, intensive fishing, and government regulations on fishing. The continued accumulation of data from sport anglers and commercial fisheries is also reflected in this new volume.