About Us

At the SEA Discovery Center, we are dedicated to inspiring a deeper sense of understanding and stewardship of the marine environment.

Children inspecting a sea star

The marine center has had a long history as an educational resource built by the community to serve the community. Originally conceived in the 1960s and located at the Liberty Bay Marina, the marine science center began its history as a marine education resource for the Kitsap community and school districts. In the 1990s, it moved to its present location in downtown Poulsbo, where it continued to serve the community with programming for all ages, but the center eventually closed in 2005.

Bill Austin, long-time Poulsbo entrepreneur and marine science advocate, recruited Bruce Harlow and others to reopen the center with the City of Poulsbo’s partnership and community support and contributions. Working tirelessly, they reopened the center in 2006, installed the seawater systems and aquarium exhibits that are still present today, and eventually added a floating boathouse laboratory for elementary students from surrounding school districts to have a full-day field trip experience as marine scientists.

volunteers

 

In May 2016, the Poulsbo Marine Science Center was formally gifted to Western Washington University to continue stewardship of the community’s marine center. The center celebrated its new name, the SEA Discovery Center, and continues to serve the community as a public aquarium and marine environmental education resource for the school districts, families, and learners of all ages.

Photo of the SEA Center when there are people out in front