More Shark, Less Money

The Aquarium of the Pacific keeps the evening discounts going through Labor Day.

What's on your family's gotta-get-it-done list before the first bell of the school year rings?

1. Buy spiral notebooks, preferably with a kitten and ball of yarn on the front, and pencils that smell like fruit. (Seriously, these should be the supplies in everyone's backpack.)

2. Catch the last blockbuster movies you meant to catch, preferably on a weekday morning.

3. Touch a shark.

Say what? "Touch a shark" isn't on the family list posted to your refrigerator? Surely you josh. Summertime, kids, and nature are a trio as old as trios get, and while the sky and grass and backyards can and should be enjoyed during the summer, there are ocean dwellers to enjoy, too.

And not every child everywhere lives within shouting distance of touch-ready sharks. But SoCal kids? Lucky you: You do.

The Aquarium of the Pacific has over 150 sharks ready for some human contact, as well as a few to be admired without petting (hello, Mr. Sand Shark). It's one of those great achievements of youth, the chance to bravely skim one's fingertips across the smooth back of a small, elegant, pointy-mouthed denizen of the ocean.

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("Pointy-mouthed" is said with all love and respect, dear sharks. We know your particular triangle-y heads lend you some major aerodynamic swimming prowess.)

So, is it time to touch a shark before summer is over? Then do it, and save cash: The Aquarium of the Pacific's Special Extended Hours are on through Labor Day, and admission is just $14.95 after 5 p.m. That's most days of the week, except Saturdays, but check the schedule.

Closing time is 8:30 p.m. meaning you could spend over three hours with the sharks. The only area that's closed in the evenings? The Lorikeet Forest.

So, have you touched a shark this summer? Hugged a tree? Daydreamed while stretched out on a lawn? The school year is on approach so get that summertime nature love on, soon.

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