“Once Upon A Tide: A Seahorse Odyssey” Exhibit

client: Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium
location: Tacoma, WA | size: 2000 sq ft footprint | opened: 2003

This project was designed for the perpetually demanding but always receptive 3 to 8-year old audience that comprises the largest number of this Zoo’s visitors. The premise revolves around a seahorse named Potbelly who is charged by King Leafy to visit seahorse kingdoms around the world, and report on their health. On his quest, Potbelly learns about the fragility of seahorse life. He realizes that we are all connected, and that we can make life better by working together. King Leafy is so pleased that he knights Potbelly who takes a vow to help protect seahorses and all other living things. At a magic mirror, the visitor can take this vow too.

The odyssey, designed by LCS, starts and ends in medieval palaces. We developed the writing for this exhibition with Laura Firth Markley, animation with Karen Lewis, and illustrations with Jenny Provenzano. The space includes colorful graphics, hands-on interactives, decorative and magical effects, and lively tanks, all of which are set at a height that works for the diminutive visitors to whom this is addressed.

photos © Michael Cole, 2008 (with exception of two photos showing people)


 “It has been a pleasure seeing this exhibit come to life in your creative hands.” – Kathleen Olson (PDZA Zoo Society )