Coupeville wharf at sunrise

Coupeville Wharf Display

Grey whales, porpoises, and sea lions oh my…

Interesting Fact

3Skeletal Displays Available to View See Our Impact

When you visit the Coupeville Wharf be sure to look up! The large marine mammal skeletons suspended from the ceiling have been here for many years but they still share their story with people every day. They are complemented by a beautiful interpretive display that shares in-depth information about everything from Gray Whales to Mussels and how people have lived alongside the wildlife here for thousands of years.

Part of the Coupeville Wharf Display

The displays delight in the beauty and fascination of our marine surroundings, while softly highlighting the pressures that threaten these resources.

This project engages thousands of people every year and was made possible by a dedicated group of our volunteers as well as the Marine Mammal Stranding Network, the Swinomish Tribal Community, Orca Network, the Island County Museum and the Coupeville Lions Club. It was partially funded and inspired in memory of Jan Holmes whose inspirational dedication to the marine environment touched so many lives.

“It’s not just about the plants and animals that live on this beach. It’s about the connections. Things we do up on the land affect the shore. We didn’t know that before but we know it now.”

Jan Holmes

We also run field trips here for school kids from around the state as well as provide interpreters for the display during events like MusselFest and the Penn Cove Water Festival. There is a lot to see and learn, and thanks to a grant from the Town of Coupeville we have also been able to add a panel in 2021 highlighting our Penn Cove Mussels.

You can watch Florian Graner’s wonderful video “Beneath the Salish Sea.” For a quick preview of what you’ll see, check this video interview with Florian.

The Coupeville Wharf  is located on Whidbey Island

  • 24 Front St NE, Coupeville, WA

For more pictures, and a delightful essay about the 2015-2016 upgrade of the displays, read this article by Dan Pedersen.

Thank you to this project’s sponsors

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