Hatteras Civic Board to Acquire Hatteras Island Ocean Center

By on August 10, 2022

(Hatteras Village Civic Association)

Hatteras Island Ocean Center.

The Hatteras Island Ocean Center, located in Hatteras Village, will soon be under new sponsorship. Conceived and founded by Eric Kaplan, the Ocean Center opened in 2013. In recent years, Hampton-Sydney College in Virginia has operated the center and students from the college have served as the summer interns, leading nature programs and creating projects for visitors and around the Hatteras Village community.

Upon Hampton Sydney’s recent decision to allow the contract with the Ocean Center to expire, Kaplan brought the people involved to the table and the non-profit Hatteras Village Civic Association agreed to oversee the operation of the center for the remaining years of the 10-year rental agreement with the help of the current director, Shirley Wicker.

Another part of the agreement donated a 4.6-acre area of marsh with a boardwalk behind the center to Hatteras Village, to also be overseen by the Hatteras Civic Association.

Once the transfer is complete, sometime in November of this year, a multi-pronged board of directors will be created, with board members focusing on the areas of marketing, education and revenue. The board will also begin the process of recruiting summer interns to lead the programming and presentations.

“We know that with the support of and resources available from the Civic Association and its board of directors, the center can quickly become an important, integral part of our community. We plan to market it to schools and school groups, to market the programming more widely and integrated with our other events and to focus on grants and other revenue streams to reach the goal of the center becoming an independent non-profit organization that is actively involved in the village and the larger island community,” Hatteras Civic Association President Karla Jarvis said in a statement.

Added Shirley Wicker: “I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this project and pleased to know that the Ocean Center will continue as an education resource for the community and visitors alike.”

The Hatteras Island Ocean Center is currently open Monday through Friday, 12:00 to 4:00 p.m. It will be closed during the winter months but will open again in Spring 2023, ready for the season.




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