Aquarium Announces Plans For The 2009 Jellyfish Jubilee

June 18, 2009

The Oregon Coast Aquarium is anticipating high turnout for its second annual fundraiser, the Jellyfish Jubilee, September 19, 2009 from 6 – 10 pm. The inaugural event was a resounding success last September, with the opening reception selling out. The 2nd annual Jellyfish Jubilee; A Celebration of Food and Wine will again fill the Aquarium with the aromas, tastes and sounds of exceptional Northwest cuisine, wines, music and a silent auction benefitting the Aquarium’s exhibits and education programs. Tickets can be purchased by calling (541) 867-4931.

The lineup so far includes thirteen of the region’s finest restaurants, three wineries and a brewery, offering up their most tempting specialties in a feast for all the senses celebrating the bounty of the great Pacific Northwest. The evening will also include special animal encounters, interpretive dives and behind the scenes tours of the Aquarium. Chefs and vintners have been eagerly anticipating the opportunity to share their passion for extraordinary food and wine during this unique event surrounded by the shimmering waters of the Aquarium.

Jellyfish Jubilee Culinary Chair Mike Downing, Executive Chef and proprietor of Quimby’s Restaurant in Newport, says he plans to serve his favorite dish at the event, blackened ahi. “We’ll sauté it to order right there, seared very fresh and served over chipotle lime sauce.” Downing, an award winning chef who brought Quimby’s to Newport from San Diego County seven years ago, has been cooking for 40 years. “My wife and I had a subscription to Oregon Coast Magazine and I remember an article titled ‘Chasing Blue Holes’ which was about looking for sunshine on the Oregon Coast. We knew we wanted to live here and we finally made it happen.”

Downing is also an unabashed supporter of the Aquarium. “We always loved the Aquarium when we came to visit and we’re happy to support the number one visitor attraction on the coast,” said Downing. “This event is a chance to enjoy wonderful food, music and mingling with like-minded people who aren’t afraid to invest in a fabulous evening for a great cause.” Downing said this year they plan to position compatible foods and wines next to each other so people can sample different food/wine/beer pairings.

Participating restaurants so far include Quimby’s Restaurant, Bamboo Sushi, Rogue Ales Brewery, Georgie’s Beachside Grill, Local Ocean Seafoods, The Bay House, Tsunami Coffee & Chocolate Company, Nana’s Irish Pub, Saffron Salmon, Bay 839, Chinook Winds, Angel Job Corps Culinary and Savory Café.

Participating wineries and breweries so far include Stoller Vineyards, Belle Vallee Cellars, Sokol-Blosser and Rogue Ales. Espressgo will provide coffee.

Tickets for admission to the 6-7 pm reception and 7-9 pm main event are $125. Tickets to the 7-9 pm main event alone are $90. In either case, Aquarium members qualify for a discount. Lodging discounts will be offered by Shilo Inn, the Holiday Inn Express, The Whaler Motel and La Quinta Inn & Suites. Visitors wishing to take advantage of lodging discounts must mention they are attending the Jellyfish Jubilee. For contact information click here

Silent Auction items so far include an Alaska Cruise, packages from Timberline, The Heathman, Tyee Lodge, a Salishan golf package, tickets to the 2010 US Amateur Golf Championship at Chambers Bay, a U of O Ducks package, and an OSU Beavers package as well as many other items including restaurant packages, surf packages and unique works of art.

West Coast Bank is the presenting sponsor of the Jellyfish Jubilee. Major Sponsors include Leopold Ketel & Partners and Wildlife Trading Company of New Mexico. Sponsors are Animal Medical Care of Newport and Marta and Ken Thrasher. This year the event added a media sponsor, Northwest Palate, the region’s premiere publication celebrating wine, food, and travel in the Pacific Northwest.