University of Delaware’s Lewes Campus Offers Free Tours the Summer 

Bridget FitzPatrick 

UD’s Hugh R. Sharp campus, located in Lewes near the iconic wind turbine and Pilottown Road is opening its doors to its marine research facilities. This includes the Marine Biogeochemistry Lab and other research facilities. 

Highly trained volunteer docents lead the guided tours. Visitors will experience the high-tech Global Visualization Lab (GVL), which displays a multi-colored view of the earth and its oceans and monitors ocean temperatures and other features worldwide. It can also zoom into North America, and ultimately the coast of Lewes.  

The Cannon Lab features a museum quality mural of ocean life and preserved samples of deep water fishes. It’s sure to be a treat for kids and adults of all ages. 

Visitors can view and learn about UD vessels, including the R/V Hugh R. Sharp. Although it can often be seen moored at rest in the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal, it is a vessel that has been involved with multiple research excursions.  

Learn about its role in a recent trip to the Antarctic, where everything from penguin and marine mammals and ocean temperatures were monitored. Other disciplines of study include chemical, geographical and fisheries research. 

The R/V Sharp operates as a member of the University-National Oceanographic Laboratory System (UNOLS) and serves several federal and academic science agencies. 

During the tour, visitors will learn about wind energy and Lewes’ own wind turbine. Although owned and operated by UD to power its entire Sharp campus, excess power generated is donated to the city of Lewes, usually enough to power 100 homes. 

Registration for the free tours is required at least two days in advance. Tours take place every Wednesday, 10 am – 12 pm from July 1 through September 6. Tours are family-friendly and adjusted accordingly for age groups. Reservations can be made through the UD Lewes Tour website or by calling (302) 645-4234. 

Another community event sponsored by UD’s College of Earth, Ocean and Environment and Delaware Sea Grant is a free lecture series, Ocean Currents. Featuring various staff and faculty, Ocean Currents focuses on public education about timely topics such as bay and ocean water quality and ecosystems. 

The series takes place every other Thursday during the summer at 7 pm, and are about an hour long. The next topic to be discussed will be about the Atlantic surgeon and their coastal movement patterns. It will take place on Thursday, July 20 at 7 pm. For more information and to register, go to the UD Alumni Events and search for Ocean Currents. 

The Ocean Currents series is also free and open to the public, but registration is required. 

Take a look and listen to the ocean and bay, but also find out what valuable research UD’s College of Earth, Ocean and Environment is exploring. 

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