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Norwalk’s Maritime Aquarium adds 4D movie theater expansion

by Susan and Simon Veness

Come face-to-face with the world’s most mysterious sharks, and travel back in time with saber-toothed squirrel, Scrat, as The Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk debuts its brand new 4D theater.

maritime aquarium

The Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk, Conn., says “good-bye” to its old IMAX theater and “hello” to a whole new world of dimensional viewing, with the addition of a 169-seat theater and two-story screen. In-seat vibrations and in-theater effects such as FX lighting, bubbles, wind, mist, and even snow, enhance the cinematic experience.

maritime aquarium

Jason Patlis, president and CEO of The Maritime Aquarium shares his enthusiasm for the addition: “We’re very excited for our guests to have this fun, new, immersive way of exploring and understanding our world. Having a shark swim right off the screen so that you believe you can touch it, and feeling the spray as an ocean wave crashes, will be memorable shared experiences for kids and parents, students and teachers, young and old. Including a 4D movie is going to be a must during a visit to The Maritime Aquarium.”

Two films, made in cooperation with SimEx-Iwerks Entertainment, will show every hour throughout the day:

shark a 4d experience
  • Shark: A 4D Experience: Part of BBC Earth’s documentary programming, this 12-minute film immerses viewers in up-close encounters with the strangest and most elusive shark species’ on the planet. Pair it with a visit to the aquarium’s Shark & Ray Touch Pool, and the Ocean Beyond the Sound tank, featuring New England’s most impressive collection of big sharks.
ice age no time for nuts 4d
  • Ice Age: No Time for Nuts 4D: This zany, nut-crazed adventure journeys back in time with everyone’s favorite saber-toothed squirrel, Scrat, from the “Ice Age” franchise. Scrat would have been right at home on the shores of Long Island Sound, which was formed during the last ice age.

Attendance during each showing will be limited to allow for physical distancing, and 3D glasses will be cleaned after each use. Digital screenings of 2D and 3D films will also take place during special events.

“We intend to take full advantage of this exciting new resource,” says Patlis, “with animal and art talks relating to our new exhibit, called, ‘A Slug’s Life: Facing the Climate Endgame,’ plus a spring lecture series and other special presentations.”

Also new to the aquarium is Sound Bites coffee shop, featuring Starbucks’ full menu of hot and cold drinks, as well as pastries and other items supplied by local bakeries.

“We look for ways, big and small, to support the local community,” Patlis says, “and welcoming some of the area’s wonderful bakeries to provide a steady supply of pastries and other foods to the Sound Bites coffee shop is a delicious idea.”

maritime aquarium

Maritime Aquarium admission is $26.95 for adults; $24.95 for 65+; and $19.95 for ages 3-12. Tickets for 4D movies are an additional $7 per person ($6 for members). Time-specific tickets for the aquarium and theater must be purchased in advance online.

For more information, or to reserve tickets, visit MaritimeAquarium.org.

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