Point Vicente Interpretive Center

My book is now being sold in the Point Vicente Interpretive Center! The Center, located in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, adjacent to the Point Vincente Lighthouse, is dedicated to teaching its visitors about the history of the Palos Verdes Peninsula. They hosted one of Muskwa’s Vaquita tables on July 6 for National Save the Vaquita Day, and have been a very useful ally in our efforts. They will now be holding my book in their gift shop!

In addition, the gift shop will be having a book signing this Saturday, November 9, from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, where you can pick up a pre-signed copy of my book (I obviously cannot be there, considering I am 2,726 miles away). If you live in the area, please stop by to explore the Center and get a copy of the world’s first Vaquita book!

Also, please subscribe to TheMuskwaclub on YouTube. They have some great videos, including The Vanishing Vaquita. You do not need to have a YouTube account to subscribe. If they reach 100 subscribers, they can begin some awesome new projects that will be very entertaining and informative.

Muskwa recognized by White House

I am completely shocked by the email I just received from William Whittenbury, Muskwa Club president:

“THIS JUST IN-

During the preparations for National Save the Vaquita Day this year, we reached out to President Obama, asking him to officially declare July 6 to be the National Save the Vaquita Day. While we did not receive a response on the issue, we felt it was a valuable experience to reach out to the White House.

Well…

Today we received a package addressed to Hannah (our publicity director) as “Ms. Hannah Kim, Director of Public Relations, Muskwa Club.” Guess who it was from! Inside was a card with the compliments of THE PRESIDENT as well as a copy of his official proclamation that made June 2013 World Oceans Month. While the Vaquita Day was not officially declared, the White House took the time to respond and make the connection between the Vaquita and the ocean!

So, in short, Muskwa is now recognized as an organization by the President of the United States!”

I was so excited to read this! It is obviously a huge step for Muskwa and an enormous deal for the Vaquita!

Also, today Cheryl Butner received her birthday present from Diane Glim (both of the American Cetacean Society), and guess what it was? My book! I am so thankful to both of them, and they even are purchasing 20 for the ACS’s Christmas fundraiser!

National Save the Vaquita Day article

Below is an awesome article by Sandy Mazza from dailybreeze.com. The article features interviews with William Whittenbury and Diane Alps, two people whom I coordinated with a lot for the July 6 event. The very accurate article nicely recaps all of the important information about the Vaquita and its very special day, July 6.

http://www.dailybreeze.com/news/ci_23606242/raising-awareness-endangered-vaquita-porpoise-at-san-pedros

Do your part

Today, Saturday, July 6, is National Save the Vaquita Day. If there was ever a day to help the Vaquita, today’s the day. I am asking you to do your part to save the Vaquita, even if you only do something seemingly miniscule. For example, today I am riding my bike around my neighborhood, putting Vaquita flyers in people’s mailboxes (I couldn’t man the Virginia table due to travel reasons). To do your part today, you could attend a Vaquita table (click here for a list), donate through ¡Viva Vaquita!’s website, buy my book, post a status update about the Vaquita on a social network, fill out this survey with the Vaquita’s information and range (the northern Gulf of California, Mexico), ride your bike around your neighborhood with the printable, quarter-sheet flyers below, make a pledge to have a DVD (Daily Vaquita Duty), or any combination of those. I would love to hear your ideas about how you can help the Vaquita today and every other day, so please leave what you did today in the comments. Thank you so much for your participation in this vital new holiday.

Vaquita Flyers

Muskwa informational video

Muskwa’s informational video is finally on YouTube! Below you can watch the wonderful video, which has a script by me and William Whittenbury, and features some of my drawings (the ones that say Aidan Bodeo-Lomicky). The video is very well put together, with beautiful music and entertaining videography. Please watch it to learn all about the Vaquita in the spirit of National Save the Vaquita Day!

Visit a table on National Save the Vaquita Day

Saturday, July 6, marks enormous day for everyone in the Vaquita world. It is National Save the Vaquita Day, which we Muskwans created as a day to celebrate and teach the world about the wonderful Vaquita. We are going to have tables at in 9 cities, run by members of the Muskwa Club, the American Cetacean Society, and NOAA. Please celebrate this monumental event with us at one of the locations below.

Key: Maroon—Muskwa Club, Indigo—Muskwa and the American Cetacean Society, Orange—American Cetacean Society, Magenta—Muskwa Club and NOAA

Point Vicente Interpretive Center, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Virginia Beach Aquarium, Virginia Beach, VA
Oklahoma Aquarium, Tulsa, OK
Monterey, CA
Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, Los Angeles, CA
Maritime Gloucester, Gloucester, MA
Oregon
Point Dume, CA
Waikiki Aquarium, Honolulu, HI

If you have any questions about the event, please email William Whittenbury at wawhittenbury@aol.com.

Email Obama

For my 200th post, I am asking you to email President Obama with this message asking him to make July 6 National Save the Vaquita Day. His “Other Inquiries” email address is support@barackobama.com. Thanks from the Muskwa Club!

________________________________________________________________

June 19, 2013

Dear President Obama:

We have an easy, no-cost way for you to make a critical difference to precious lives. We, the Muskwa Club, would like you to proclaim July 6, 2013 as “National Save the Vaquita Day.” The Muskwa Club was started by kids to promote value-added activities for Middle School and High School age students. We take field trips to places of educational interest, we build engineering projects, we host a speaker series to showcase our members’ passions, and we engage in community service activities. Saving the Vaquita has become our number one service project.

The Vaquita is the smallest, arguably cutest and definitely most endangered marine mammal. These precious porpoises live in the Sea of Cortez and have a range only one quarter the size of metropolitan Los Angeles. Only about 170 Vaquita remain in existence today and approximately 30 die each year due to accidental gill net entanglement. If nothing more is done, they will be functionally extinct by 2017. We can’t let this happen! Solutions have been created such as Vaquita safe nets, and the Mexican government is working on the problem. However, the current economic climate necessitates that we all pitch in and help our neighbors to the south.

Our club is working very hard to raise awareness of the Vaquita. The more people who know about these beloved porpoises, the more likely they will receive what they need to survive extinction. So far we have hosted five Vaquita awareness tables at local events in the Southern California area. We plan to host at least three more during World Ocean’s Day on both the west and east coasts of the US. However, our really big push will be on July 6, 2013 when we will host a tri-coastal event. The Waikiki Aquarium in your home State, and the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium in San Pedro, CA have confirmed. The National Aquarium is very interested in allowing us to host a table there and we have tentative agreements with seven more aquariums across the country. All we need from you is to officially proclaim the day “National Save the Vaquita Day.” That will help promote media attention to our efforts, show that you care about this important international issue, and shine a much needed light on the plight of the Vaquita.

In addition to our awareness table efforts, we are also producing a series of videos about the Vaquita, have our own website, Facebook page, Twitter account, and YouTube Channel, and we speak locally to school science classes about the Vaquita. We’ve established alliances with the American Cetacean Society, Los Serenos de Pt. Vicente, Viva Vaquita, and V-log. At our request, the American Cetacean Society, Los Angeles Chapter has set up a fund to which people can contribute toward the net switch out program. We do not collect money, being minors, but we feel we can be a force for change. Please help us!

Sincerely,

[Your name]

Obama-Thank-You1

Flyer

Using one of the beautiful paintings that Memuco made for the cover of my book, I created a flyer for my World Oceans Day table. Please share this on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks to attract as many people as you can to this awesome event. Unfortunately, the National Aquarium in Baltimore will not be able to host a table on July 6, so I will not be there on National Save the Vaquita Day. I look forward to possibly working with them in the future, though.

WOD Poster

I’ll be back

Here is what the t-shirt looks like (they simplified my drawings’ colors and details for easier printing):

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back-big

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I have been and will continue to be extremely busy for the next few months, due to the publishing of my book, the creation of the VCS, and helping coordinate National Save the Vaquita Day (July 6). I may not be able to post as many things during this time. But believe me, I am going to have a lot of stories to tell when it’s all over.