Corporate Team Building and Program Sponsorship
The Oyster Recovery Partnership has teamed up with state and federal partners in a concerted effort to accelerate the restoration of native oyster reefs and achieve an ambitious goal of twenty Bay tributaries restored by 2025. Harris Creek, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, is the first targeted restoration location, and by itself represents the largest oyster restoration effort ever conducted in the Chesapeake Bay and on the entire East Coast.
ORP is seeking to raise $1 million toward oyster restoration in Harris Creek and other locations. Funding is our only limitation as ORP and our partners have the capacity to produce 2 billion oysters and plant 500 acres per year. For every $1 donated, normally 50 oysters are planted. However, for this campaign, all gifts will be matched with $3 for every $1 we raise, allowing ORP to plant 200 oysters for every $1 donated. Therefore, for every $5,000 raised, ORP can recycle 100 bushels of shells and plant 500,000 oysters. To learn more details on the Harris Creek Project or become a valued partner in our efforts, click here.
Oyster shell is a limited natural resource that provides crucial natural habitat for new oysters in the Chesapeake Bay and is used by the UMCES Horn Point Lab Oyster Hatchery for its oyster setting process. Maryland’s shell supply, as it stands now, will deplete within just a few years — jeopardizing Chesapeake Bay restoration and aquaculture efforts.
ORP officially founded the region’s first “Shell Recycling Alliance” in 2010 after local oyster shuckers came to us concerned from their observations that thousands of oyster shells were simply being tossed in the trash at events where they shucked oysters. To date, the SRA has recycled more than 30,000 bushels of shell or the equivalent to 1,200 tons!
ORP, or one of our partners, collects used oyster and clam shells weekly from the hundreds of restaurants, caterers and seafood whole sellers throughout Maryland, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and Delaware for delivery to the UMCES Horn Point Lab Hatchery. This recycled shell is used as setting material for new spat (baby oysters) to be planted back into the Bay and its tributaries. Each recycled shell can become home to 10 new oysters in the bay. Click here to learn more about the Shell Recycling Alliance or become a “Shells Angels” Partner.
“Mermaid Kiss” is ORP’s annual fundraiser and awards ceremony. It is a celebration of efforts — past, present and future — to restore the Bay oyster population. We celebrate the oyster with friends, food, music and fun. Each year “Mermaid Kiss” showcases fine cuisine from restaurant members of ORP’s Shell Recycling Alliance, beautiful art and jewelry depicting the Bay and top music from the region. The event includes a VIP preview party, during which the “It’s My Bay” awards are presented to public policy makers, individuals, corporations and others that have made significant contributions to restoring oysters. To learn more about Mermaid Kiss Oyster Fest or become an Event Partner, click here.
Corporate Team Building Events
We believe that oyster restoration can be an excellent catalyst for meaningful team building experiences that build collective memories and strengthen group communication. ORP can partner with, and provide customized opportunities for, organizations to participate in a variety of corporate team building events including a “Day on the Bay,” Shell Bagging, Oyster Planting as well as Oysters on the Half Shell/Educational Displays for Corporate Events. Please contact Heather Epkins or Stephan Abel at 410-990-4970 or email Events@oysterrecovery.org to learn more.
Click here to see how other Bay-minded organizations are making a tangible difference in the health of our Bay by throwing ORP a fundraiser.
Each year, the Oyster Recovery Partnership conducts educational programs for area students and families, providing opportunities for the community to learn and work alongside our field crew and Maryland watermen. We believe that our work in restoring oysters to the Bay is imperative to the health of our Bay in the future. We are also committed to cultivating the next generation of Bay ambassadors through our kids’ program, “The Little Nippers Club.”