President’s Message – March 2014

Dear Aquarist,

Our March event brought in a different type of guest speaker. Gene Ritter, an experienced diver in NYC waters, was our guest for the evening.  His topic was “Reef Diving in NYC.” Gene’s presentation and videos were fascinating. He spoke of his many different exploits and findings beneath the waves in our own back yard. He discussed the finding of the Steeplechase Pier bell, a sunken Army barge filled with ammunition at the base of the Verrazano Bridge, and having celebrities take dives in the waters surrounding New York – which included our NY Aquarium Director Jon Forrest Dohlin. Gene discovered several Revolutionary warships that were sunk in the East River and a World War II fighter plane that went down off of Westchester. The fighter plane on a training mission crashed without a trace. Many years later, a relative of the pilot was convinced he knew where the plane was located. He talked Gene into the search and before long they did discover the aircraft 40 miles away from where it should have been. A coincidence or a voice from beyond? You decide.

Since poor weather kept some members away last month, we decided to have our 103rd birthday party at our March event. It was a beautiful and delicious cake (proof of that was there was not one piece left). A good time was had by all!

Next month’s event brings Rachel O’Leary as our guest speaker. Rachel is a most sought after speaker. She will be speaking on “Freshwater Nano Diversity – The Ins, Outs and In-Betweens.” Rachel is an invertebrate expert, so I’m sure she will talk on snails and shrimps and what fish species would go well with them. Put it on your calendar to be at the NY Aquarium Education Hall for April 11 at 7:30 PM. As always, there is Free Parking and Free Refreshments.

Please visit our new website where you can read the Bulletin and enjoy a full color Aquatica. The interactive forums and sponsor sections are truly enjoyable. Provided you have given us your email address, you will be getting notifications of club events via email.

I am asking for your help and support. If you want to see different speakers or try different things, please let me know. The elected officials of the Brooklyn Aquarium Society are here to serve YOU! Please let us know what you want and why. It would be helpful to everyone.

It is important that you visit and patronize our sponsors. It goes full circle: by helping them, they are also helping you as hobbyists and everyone is helping the Brooklyn Aquarium Society, so help us, help you!

For more info, please call our BAS Hotline at (718) 837-4455.

On a more personal note – Any member who desires to attend a Board meeting, which are held at the Education Center of the New York Aquarium on the 1st Friday of the month, please notify me at (718) 238-1792 by the Tuesday previous to the meeting.


Joe Graffagnino,