SEA LIFE Aquarium Kansas City Hosts First Annual Fin-A-Thon to Raise Awareness and Money Against Shark Finning

SEA LIFE Aquarium Kansas City's Young Environmentalist, Kierra Dinwiddie, swims to raise money against shark finning. (Photo: Business Wire)

KANSAS CITY, Mo.--()--SEA LIFE Aquarium Kansas City’s Fin-A-Thon was a huge success, raising $2,000 for WildAid to assist in their shark fin demand reduction campaigns. The Fin-A-Thon was held on Friday, August 8th, at Henley Aquatic Center in Independence, Missouri.

Shark finning is the trade practice where fishermen capture sharks, cut off their fins and throw the rest of the body into the ocean, leading them to a certain death. Shark species around the world have experienced dramatic population declines in the past 30 to 40 years due to the growth in demand for their fins for a soup, considered a delicacy in China. The up to 73 million sharks are killed annually just for their fins, often via this cruel practice of ‘finning.’

“I participated in the Fin-A-Thon today because sharks are my favorite animal,” says Kierra Dinwiddie, SEA LIFE Aquarium’s Young Environmentalist, age 12. “I really want people to stop hunting and hurting our sharks because they are very important to the ocean ecosystem.”

About SEA LIFE Kansas City Aquarium

SEA LIFE Kansas City Aquarium opened in April 2012. SEA LIFE Kansas City takes visitors on an enthralling two hour journey from the fresh waters of the Missouri River, into the mighty Mississippi River then out into the warm blue coral strewn waters of the Caribbean Sea, ending in the deep dark abyss of the Atlantic Ocean. Come nose to nose with sharks and prepare for astonishingly close views of everything from humble starfish and seahorses to graceful rays. In addition, a stunning centerpiece is a huge tropical ocean tank with a walk-through underwater tunnel. To get any closer you’d have to get wet!

Merlin Entertainments Boilerplate – North America

MERLIN ENTERTAINMENTS plc is the leading name in location-based, family entertainment. Europe’s Number 1 and the world’s second-largest visitor attraction operator, Merlin now operates 104 attractions, 10 hotels/3 holiday villages in 22 countries and across 4 continents. The company aims to deliver memorable and rewarding experiences to its almost 60 million visitors worldwide, through its iconic global and local brands, and the commitment and passion of its managers and more than 20,000 + employees.

Merlin has twenty three attractions and one hotel in North America - including two stunning LEGOLAND Resorts – LEGOLAND Florida with its theme park, water park, and LEGOLAND California theme park with water park, SEA LIFE aquarium and themed hotel; Madame Tussauds celebrity wax attractions in New York, Washington DC, Las Vegas; Hollywood; and San Francisco LEGOLAND Discovery Centers in Chicago; Dallas/Fort Worth; Kansas City Missouri; Atlanta, Georgia; Boston; Westchester, New York; Toronto, Canada; a Dungeon in San Francisco; and SEA LIFE aquariums in Phoenix, Arizona; Kansas City, Missouri; Dallas/Fort Worth; the Mall of America in Minneapolis and Charlotte – Concord - underlining the company’s position as the world’s biggest global aquarium operator. Visit for more information.

About WildAid

WildAid is the only organization to solely focus on reducing the demand for wildlife products. Working with hundreds of Asian and Western political figures, celebrities, and business leaders, including the Duke of Cambridge, Yao Ming, Jackie Chan, Edward Norton, and Sir Richard Branson. WildAid’s public service messages and educational initiatives reach hundreds of millions of people a week in China alone through donated media space. “When the buying stops, the killing can too.” For more information:

About Henley Aquatic Center

The Henley Aquatic Center is one of the premiere competitive swimming pools in the Kansas City area. Built in 1990, the Henley Aquatic Center has recently undergone major renovations. These improvements include: a new air handling system, new pool deck, fresh paint job, new laneropes, new diving boards and diving board stands, new starting blocks and a new Daktronics Timing system.


SEA LIFE Kansas City Aquarium
Elizabeth Mathews, 816-556-3964


SEA LIFE Kansas City Aquarium
Elizabeth Mathews, 816-556-3964