Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Center At a Glance
Those of you who had loyally visited our old hospital are astonished when you walk through our doors. We worked really hard for over fifteen years to move from dream to steel and concrete. It was the financial support of all of you who believed in our work, and in our ability to heal and send these magnificent turtles back home that made it come true. Now is our chance to show you just how your contributions are put to work.
First stop is a photo-op in front of our spectacular wall mural. We’ve lost track of how many pictures have been taken with our “Oceans of Memories” wall serving as the backdrop. Let’s just say that Peggy, one of our volunteers, is pretty adept at operating anything that takes pictures after serving as the unofficial family portrait photographer for much of the summer.
After stopping at the various exhibits in our great hall visitors move to the windows of Sea Turtle Sick Bay (our ICU) where every new patient spends a minimum of about six weeks in treatment and/or acclimation. It can be heartrending to see the trauma in this area, but the sorrow is balanced by the sight of our little Greens frolicking in the therapy pool in the same room. They’re clearly enjoying themselves and we hope the positive vibes they send out to their sick and injured comrades promote healing and recovery.
Next stop is the observation ramp in Sea Turtle Bay. These critters are well along in their recovery and just waiting for our vet to pronounce them homeward bound. We have Loggerheads, Greens and Kemp’s Ridleys of all sizes on our tour. They all have a story to tell, and you’re welcome to take pictures of them. Our hospital ambassador and permanent resident, “Lennie” is, as usual, the star.
You can take a little bit of our hospital home with you as you exit through our gift shop, including our plush “Lennie Turtle,” one of our biggest sellers. You can also adopt Lennie or one of our other patients at Adoption Central. We have a variety of merchandise, most of it exclusive to our hospital. If you get anything it must be our logo shirt which was designed by Karen Beasley. The hospital is her legacy.
General admission: $5 (13 & up); Seniors and Military: $4; Children $3 (12 & under). We are located at 302 Tortuga Lane, (Mainland) Surf City. Take the turn from Rts. 50/210 onto Charlie Medlin Drive (Shipwreck Point Mini Golf is your landmark for this road.) Follow the road onto the gravel section and through the round-about. We are the only building on Tortuga.
You can’t use Google Maps to find our new facility (we moved from Topsail Beach almost a year ago.) The road (Tortuga Lane) is too new and doesn’t show up on GPS. And a word of advice: if you park on the side of the road beware of the drop-off into the ditches, and that sand is softer than it looks!