Have you ever had a time in your life where you always second guess yourself at something? Maybe you see an opportunity come up at work and you think, man, I have the skills for this and I know I can do it, but you psych yourself out to where you don’t apply to the position, or you’re a really good singer and your afraid to audition because you doubt yourself and you think you won’t make it far. I bring this up because in life if we keep second guessing ourselves at things, we will miss out on some pretty awesome adventures. I’m glad I didn’t miss out one this opportunity that I’m about to tell you! Over this past weekend I got to do something that I never thought I would EVER, I mean EVER get to do, and that was spend it with Warner Bros and the cast of Dolphin Tale 2. I mean seriously, who gets to do that?!?! ME!!! The adventures from this weekend was so incredible and truly a once in a lifetime experience. Over the course of the next several weeks, you will be seeing a series of blog posts about my AMAZING, INSPIRING, SWOOOOOOOing weekend! In today’s post, I want to introduce you to Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA), Home of Winter, the Dolphin and star of Dolphin Tale and the upcoming film, Dolphin Tale 2.
Everywhere I travelled, I was running into DOLPHIN Statues…
To start my weekend out right, we got to take a tour of CMA, meet the CEO, David Yates AND meet Winter & Hope. WHEWWWW… Are you still with me? That is enough right there to keep you smiling for days. I know I am. CEO, David Yates of CMA began to share the story of the aquarium. It has pretty cool story in itself. Did you know that it used to be a water treatment plant and has been open since 1972? Pretty awesome to see how it has transformed today. When I was walking around it, I could get a sense of smell that old timey history. Do any of you know what I’m talking about?!?
Anyways, CMA’s dedication each day is to RESCUE, REHAB, RELEASE…INSPIRE. WOW! Now that is a pretty powerful statement. Every animal that comes through the doors of the aquarium have either been injured or suffering from an illness and cannot survive on their own in the wilderness. That is where CMA steps in and gives them HOPE!
On December 2005, stranded in Mosquito Lagoon, near Cape Canaveral, Florida, CMA received a call that would forever change their lives. A bottlenose dolphin that was about 3 months old has washed upon the area. She was tangled up in a crap trap line that was cutting off circulation to her tail flukes. After CMA arrived and removed the line, they transported her to new home and despite every effort to expedite the healing process, her tail deteriorated and could not be saved.
Can you guess how Winter got her name?!?!
So what happened next?
It’s pretty amazing what a brilliant mind and team can do! People who show perseverance can do anything. AND THEY DID! Hanger Prosthetics and Orthotics, Inc., worked with Dr. Mike Walsh, CMA’s marine mammal veterinarian and created a prosthetic tail with a complete fluke and joint onto a dolphin which had never been done before. UNBELIEVABLE! This was the first time EVER to be done. Can you see now, why this is just so inspiring? So Winter now gets a new one every 3-6 months. Today, Winter has a sock called “Winter’s Gel” that helps with his prosthetics. Because of Winter and the teams creation, this same concept is being used for our VETERANS!
Are you INSPIRED yet? Don’t you just fall in LOVE with Winter? It really gives you a glimpse of HOPE. Seeing how this Dolphin who wasn’t going to push through, made it against all odds and now is giving people all over the world that missing piece. A superhero really doesn’t wear a cape, sometimes they have fins!
Winter’s amazing Timeline posted above where is home is…
Just a fun fact for you, when Dolphin Tale first released, that weekend, CMA received over 10,000 emails that hit their server and thousands of emails and letters from parents/children from all over the world sharing how Winter has inspired them.
So I leave you with this, I belive that Winter has given HOPE to so many out in the universe, that the universe decided to give Winter HOPE in return. HOPE you are ready for the new movie!
OH, and uh make sure you have a box of tissues with you…
If you want to see what Winter & Hope are up to, you can watch them on webcam 24/7. Click here…
Congratulations to Alisha at Willowberry Road for winning the free download to Gavin Degraw’s latest single, “You Got Me”! I hope you enjoy it…
I received complimentary admission to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium as a Dolphin Tale 2 Ambassador. The review is written by me on behalf of Warner Bros & Clearwater Marine Aquarium. The opinions expressed above are all mine.