Kids get in free at the Newport Aquarium for Winter Family Days through Feb. 26

Posted at 11:10 AM, Jan 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-09 05:15:20-05

NEWPORT, Ky. – Just as temperatures dip toward zero, Newport Aquarium announces the return of Winter Family Days, where one child (ages 2-12) gets in free with each full-priced adult until Feb. 26. (The temperature inside will always be 72 degrees, no matter how much snow and ice falls outside.)

Winter Family Days tickets will be available at the Newport Aquarium ticket window, online at or by phone at 800-406-FISH (3474).

The aquarium has also added a limited-time-only meet-and-greet opportunity with Jim Henson’s Splash and Bubbles from the new PBS show by the same name. The new ocean-themed animated kids’ series encourages children to explore the natural undersea world.

During Winter Family Days, several of the species featured in the cartoon will be on exhibit in the Shore Gallery. Newport Aquarium’s Shark Ray Bay Theater will be transformed into the hit TV show’s Reeftown setting where guests will have an opportunity to meet and get their picture taken with Splash and Bubbles.

Extended Winter Hours

The aquarium will open one hour early (9 a.m. to 7 p.m.) on the following dates:

  • Saturdays in January and February (Beginning Jan. 14)
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend
  • Presidents Day Weekend

Last entry to the aquarium will be one hour before closing. See their website here for operating hours.

Here is what kids and families can look forward to at the Newport Aquarium:

Shark Bridge – This 75-foot rope bridge is the only one of its kind in North America and allows guests to walk just inches above nearly two dozen sharks, exotic shark rays, two stingrays and more than 300 fish in one of the country’s largest open air tank displays. 

Surrounded by Sharks – Guests can walk through a 385,000-gallon tank filled with rare and exotic shark rays, six species of shark and Denver, the mischievous 200-pound loggerhead sea turtle.

Seahorses: Unbridled Fun – This interactive exhibit features some of nature’s most amazing creatures, including several species of seahorses, sea dragons, trumpetfish, razorfish and pipefish. At the Seahorse Creation Station, guests can discover their inner-artist and create a digital seahorse to share. The exhibit also features rare video of seahorses and their most unusual behaviors.

Gator Alley – Gator Alley is the home of Mighty Mike – who at 14-feet long and 800 pounds is the biggest alligator in the country outside of Florida, as well as Snowball and Snowflake, two of fewer than 100 white alligators in the world.

Kroger Penguin Palooza – With five different sub-Antarctic penguin species totaling nearly 50 birds, Kroger Penguin Palooza boasts one of the most diverse collections of cold-weather penguins in the country.

Frog Bog – Children have never seen frogs like this before as they can find secret frog tanks visible only when they climb through tunnels and tubes in the kids-only Frog Bog jungle gym.