Open Today: 9am – 4:30pm

VIP Trainer2023-10-13T18:05:03-05:00

VIP Trainer

Spend the morning learning what it takes to be a trainer at the Gulfarium!

VIP TRAINER

Fast Facts

Price: $399.00

Ages: 13 and up

Duration: 4 hours

* General admission is included for participant(s)

Get a hands-on look at caring for our animals!

Ever wonder what it’s like to be an animal care specialist at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park? As a VIP Trainer, you can enjoy a hands-on, behind-the-scenes experience like no other! Working side-by-side with our trainers and aquarists, you’ll learn and practice all it takes to train and care for all of our marine animal residents!

  • Participants must be at least 13 years of age due to height limitations and educational content. Age limit is strictly enforced.
  • Participants with special needs including mobility, seeing, or hearing impairments must contact Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park prior to reserving the encounter.
  • Encounter must be paid in full at the time of reservation.
  • Encounters continue rain or shine, no refunds or exchanges due to inclement weather.
  • 24-hour notice must be given in order to receive a full refund of the purchase price.
  • In the event that an encounter must be rescheduled within 24 hours prior to the encounter start time, or after a missed encounter, a rebooking fee of 25% of the encounter purchase price will be applied. Rebooking is subject to program availability and is not guaranteed.
  • Cameras/phones are not allowed into animal enclosures or on docks as participants’ hands must be free to interact with the animals.  Family and friends are welcome to take photos from general admission viewing areas.
  • For the safety of the animals, remove jewelry and loose articles from pockets prior to the start of the encounter.
  • All pricing is subject to change.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the encounter price include general admission?2023-03-15T17:51:53-05:00

Yes, general admission is included in the price of a VIP Trainer program.

My child is twelve years old, can they participate?2023-03-15T17:51:53-05:00

No, due to program and educational content, participants must be at least thirteen (13) years of age.

Can I take photos during my encounter?2023-03-15T17:51:53-05:00

Cameras/phones are not allowed into animal enclosures or on docks as participants’ hands must be free to interact with the animals.  The only exception to this is that underwater cameras are allowed when snorkeling with stingrays and sharks in Stingray Bay. Family and friends are welcome to take photos from general admission viewing areas.

Can a parent or family member follow along during the program to take photos without participating in the encounter?2023-03-15T17:51:53-05:00

Most of the animal encounters occur in areas of the park that are visible from general admission viewing areas.  Friends and family are more than welcome to take photos from these areas but are not allowed in behind-the-scenes areas of the park.

Are photos included with this encounter?2023-03-15T17:51:53-05:00

Photos of the VIP Trainer are taken at various times during the encounter by a staff member.  These are available for purchase after the program.

What else is included in my VIP Trainer program?2023-03-15T17:51:54-05:00

Also included is a general admission pass to enjoy the Gulfarium for an additional day, lunch from the Dive-In Eatery, and a VIP Trainer t-shirt.

Is there a place to change clothes or keep my valuables?2023-03-15T17:51:54-05:00

Changing rooms and lockers are available on site for use by in- water encounter participants free of charge.

Do I need to wear a bathing suit?2023-03-15T17:51:54-05:00

Yes, bathing suit attire must be worn or brought with the participant.

What else does the program include?2023-03-15T17:51:54-05:00

Although each program is different in order to incorporate variety for the animals, the program may include feeding and giving various behavior signals while interacting with the animals. Additionally, VIP Trainers will learn about how to care for and train each individual animal species.

Will I get to go in the water with any animals?2023-04-03T10:50:51-05:00

Yes, our VIP participants will get into the water when they take part in our Stingray Bay Snorkel encounter.

Which animals do I get to meet and how long do I spend with each?2023-03-15T17:51:54-05:00

During this program, participants will encounter penguins, dolphins, seals, sea lions, tropical birds, stingrays and sharks.  The length of time spent with each animal varies with each program depending on the animals’ needs and behavior.

Can I reschedule my encounter for a different day if something comes up? What if I miss my scheduled encounter?2023-03-16T15:24:51-05:00

If more than 24 hours notice is given, an encounter can be rescheduled at no charge. Rescheduling is subject to program availability and is not guaranteed. In the event that an encounter must be rescheduled within the 24-hour window prior to the encounter start time, or after a missed encounter, a rebooking fee of 25% of the encounter purchase price will be applied. Call 850-243-9046 x 4 for assistance.

Can I get a refund if I need to cancel my reservation?2023-03-16T15:24:10-05:00

24-hour notice must be given in order to receive a full refund of the purchase price.  Call 850-243-9046 x 4 for assistance.

Can I get a refund if it is raining on the day of my encounter?2023-03-15T17:51:55-05:00

Encounters continue rain or shine, no refunds or exchanges due to inclement weather.

five gold stars

“My daughter has always wanted to be a marine mammal trainer. Now that she’s in high school we thought this would be a great way for her to see if it was really something she would enjoy. And she loved it!

She definitely wants to be a marine mammal trainer after today!”

MORE EXPERIENCES

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Take center stage, as an acting veterinarian, while joining our marine mammal trainers dockside during a segment in one of our dolphin shows.

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This turtle-filled encounter will introduce you to our seafaring loggerheads, a variety of fresh water turtles, and even our land-loving African spurred tortoises.

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Stingray Bay Snorkel

Immerse yourself in a bay of wonder as you snorkel with stingrays, bamboo sharks and a variety of tropical fish!

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