N.C. Aquariums voted among top in nation

A shark at the N.C. Aquarium on Roanoke Island. [Natalie Pugh photo]

The North Carolina Aquariums were voted among top in the nation, finishing seventh in USA Today’s Readers’ Choice Awards.

After being selected by a panel of experts, the North Carolina Aquariums, which include aquariums at Fort Fisher, Pine Knoll Shores, on Roanoke Island as well as Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head, competed head-to-head with big names like the Florida Aquarium, Georgia Aquarium, Monterey Bay Aquarium and National Aquarium in Baltimore. Last year, the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores placed ninth in the nation.

“This honor shows that our expert animal care, personal connections made with our guests and our commitment to saving animals in the wild have made a positive impression on our visitors and communities,” North Carolina Aquariums director Maylon White said in a news release.

The top votes in this year’s competition went to Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies in Tennessee, the Florida Aquarium and the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas in Louisiana.

The North Carolina Aquariums and Jennette’s Pier sit nestled in coastal areas, surrounded by the beauty and vitality of sounds and wetlands. Each location serves as a living illustration of the connection to the natural world.

Nominees for all categories in USA Today’s 10 Best Readers’ Choice Awards are chosen by a panel of relevant experts which include a combination of editors from USA TODAY; editors from 10Best.com; relevant expert contributors; and sources for both these media and other Gannett properties. For more information, see the 10Best.com website.

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