West Marine Unveils New BlueFuture Kids Zone at Santa Cruz Store Grand Opening Celebration This Month

Guests encouraged to visit and enjoy kid-friendly activities Saturday and Sunday, August 27-28

Watsonville, CA, August 18, 2016 –West Marine has announced that it will unveil its new BlueFuture Kids Zone at the grand opening celebration of its new store in Santa Cruz, California, later this month. The display will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, August 27-28 in the Santa Cruz store parking lot, located at 2460 17th Avenue.

The world’s premier Waterlife Outfitter is encouraging guests to visit the Kids Zone, which is comprised of a custom-designed tent and fun Waterlife activities contained beneath, to experience its variety of family-friendly activities. Activities including puzzle-making with “pieceless puzzles,” composing the perfect keepsake photo with creatively designed tent walls and a selection of fun photo props, an art project that consists of coloring a custom sailboat/underwater scene, and learning to tie nautical knots.

“We’ll have exciting prizes for those who complete our BlueFuture knot-tying challenge, and we’ll be giving away lunch-tote swag bags with some goodies stuffed inside as well,” says Lindsey Johnson, West Marine’s Director of Communications.

According to Johnson, the West Marine team had two goals in mind when it created the innovative BlueFuture tent: To provide family fun at its store grand openings and sponsored events around the country, and to encourage children and families to learn more about Waterlife activities, environments and concerns.

“When we distribute our BlueFuture grants twice each year, we’re supporting organizations that provide access to the water and teach valuable job and life skills through Waterlife adventure, education and stewardship,” she explains.

“But we also realize that we need to reach children and families who may not be involved with these types of organizations yet,” she continues. “By engaging them in our new BlueFuture Kids Zone, we hope to spark that interest that will lead them to become involved with their local Waterlife organizations, from sailing clubs and Sea Scouts to groups dedicated to marine conservation and sustainable practices.”

While visiting the new Kids Zone, families may choose to make personal donations to West Marine’s nonprofit BlueFuture Fund, which provides those much-needed grants to community-based, nonprofit organizations dedicated to getting young people on and around the water in both educational and recreational capacities. West Marine distributes BlueFuture grants twice a year, in late spring and early fall.

They also may purchase reusable, eco-friendly BlueFuture bags for $5 apiece, with all proceeds benefiting the BlueFuture Fund. These bags, created for 2016 World Oceans Day in June, feature illustrations by the two youth artists who won West Marine’s inaugural World Oceans Day Bag Design Contest.

World Oceans Day is one of three major annual fundraisers for West Marine, allowing it to grow the BlueFuture Fund, reach more nonprofit organizations across the country and, ultimately, have a greater impact in children’s lives. The others are National Safe Boating Week in May, and the Month of Giving in December.

To learn more about the BlueFuture initiative and how you can help, visit www.westmarine.com/BlueFuture.

About West Marine
Each person has a unique connection to the water. At West Marine (westmarine.com,NASDAQ: WMAR), our knowledge, enthusiasm and products prepare waterlife adventurers to foster that connection and explore their passions. With more than 260 stores located in 38 states and Puerto Rico and an eCommerce website reaching domestic, international and professional customers, West Marine is recognized as a leading Waterlife Outfitter for cruisers,sailors, anglers and paddlesports enthusiasts. Since first opening our doors in 1968, WestMarine associates continue to share the same love for the water as our customers and provide helpful advice on the gear and gadgets they need to be safe and have fun.

Media Contact

Margo Donohue | press@westmarine.com | 917.679.6945