Living Shores Aquarium makes a splash in Glen, New Hampshire



Back when the following article was published in the Conway Daily Sun, the Living shores Aquarium was getting set to open. Follow the link at the end of this article to see how they are doing today!


GLEN — Set to splash down next week in the Mount Washington Valley is Living Shores Aquarium, located just north of sister attaction “Story Land” on Route 16 in Glen.

It will be a year-round attraction, seven days a week, when it opens next Monday, Nov. 4.

Featuring four interactive tide pool areas, Living Shores invites children and adults alike to reach into the water and touch creatures big and small, from sea stars and hermit crabs, to stingrays and bamboo sharks.

The aquarium is located in what was once Heritage New Hampshire, a history-themed attraction that closed its doors after former owner Stoney Morrell’s passing in 2006.

After the building sat vacant for years, speculation ran rampant about what Palace Entertainment, which purchased Story Land and the Heritage site in 2009, would do with it.

They let the fish out of the tank, so to speak, in February 2018, announcing plans to build an aquarium in former attraction that Bob and Ruth Morrell had opened in the bicentennial summer of 1976.

Work has been underway for a year and a half; birds were brought in this past April, and the fish and mammals a month ago.

As a year-round daily operation, it will usher in a new era in local tourism.

“I think Bob Morrell would have appreciated the creativity and ingenuity involved with this project, and of our bringing this to the valley,” Story Land-Living Shores Aquarium General Manager Eric Dziedzic said recently.

“I think Bob would have been proud,” agreed Story Land Marketing Director Lauren Hawkins.

Dziedzic and Hawkins noted that Morrell (1920-98) was a founding member of the Mount Washington Valley chapter of Habitat for Humanity, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a gala tonight at the aquarium (for more on Habitat, see story on page 10).

“Bob Morrell was huge in the start of Habitat. The fact they are going to hold their event here gives me goose bumps,” said Dziedzic.

“People are very excited to see the aquarium, so this was a neat way to celebrate MWV Habitat for Humanity’s 25th and to pay tribute to some of the founders, such as Al Risch, Ted Pettengill and Bob Morrell,” said Hawkins, who also sits on the Habitat board of directors.

Design work on the aquarium started in 2016; construction began in 2018 and continued right up to this week, Dziedzic said, adding, “We used local contractors, but the general contractor was us. We basically gutted the interior.

“The goal is to create something that is educational and entertaining, that is very hands-on,” he said. “It’s all about bringing real-life experiences to children, and I think we’ve hit it right on the head.”

Asked how Story Land and Living Shores complement one another, Dziedzic said the aquarium “will bring science to Story Land. The two businesses, I think, go hand in hand: You’ve got Story Land, ‘where fantasy lives,’ and then you bring the reality into it by bringing them here for hands-on science.”

Charyl Reardon, president of the White Mountains Attractions Association, said Living Shores adds much to the region’s array of amenities.

“Our area is fortunate to have businesses like Story Land that recognize investment into their properties and communities as being vital to the economic growth in the White Mountains and the tourism industry,” Reardon said.


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