Randy Wilder/Monterey Bay Aquarium
In the Underwater Explorers program, a supervised SCUBA experience, kids dive into the wonders of Monterey Bay.
GET IN THERE: If you've ever visited an aquarium with a younger ocean aficionado, and stood before a tank, and seen a diver drop in to do a bit of fish-feeding, chances are your companion has expressed a desire to get in there as well. Then you usually have to explain that scuba-ing amongst the aquarium's denizens is only open to staff members, and you and your disappointed charge move onto the next exhibit. Disappointment is banished, however, in the Underwater Explorers program, which opened on Saturday, June 18 at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. If you think that name means kids are suiting up and going swimming, you'd be absolutely correct.
WATERY FUN: Kids ages 8 to 13 will be "introduced to surface scuba" via this program. Cost is $95, and the dive area? The Great Tide Pool. Oh yeah, that is a score among scores. Dive staff will accompany the aspiring oceanographers. You should also note that "no scuba experience or equipment is required." The program ends on Sept. 5, 2011, just in time for the new diver to return to school and brag to everyone they know.