This post has been updated.

SeaWorld has long had a big impact on our region’s economy and national reputation.

That presence took a hit when filmmaker Gabriela Cowperthwaite released her damning documentary, “Blackfish.” SeaWorld was forced to deal with a heightened degree of scrutiny from a growing base of critics, and we wanted to know what that meant for San Diego.

READ MORE: What We Learned About SeaWorld

To cap off our quest, a series that dove into the ethics, economics and fate of the park, we’re gathering a few invested parties to talk through the issues. Tickets are $20, but the event is free for VOSD members. Register here.

Joining us on stage June 5 at the Museum of Contemporary Art in La Jolla:

We Stand Up For You. Will You Stand Up For Us?

Naomi Rose, a marine mammal scientist who works with a D.C.-based Animal Welfare Institute and was a key consultant on “Blackfish”;

Susan Gray Davis, a former UC San Diego professor who wrote a book on our hometown SeaWorld and can speak to its local contributions;

• and a representative from SeaWorld.

As far as we’ve seen, this will be the first time SeaWorld answers questions and offers its perspective directly to the public. We’re looking forward to a measured chat about the park, and we want you there.

Voice of San Diego’s Scott Lewis and Lisa Halverstadt will co-moderate, and we’ll be taking questions from the audience by text. Save the date.

    This article relates to: News, Quest, Quest: SeaWorld, SeaWorld

    Written by Catherine Green

    Catherine Green is deputy editor at Voice of San Diego. She handles daily operations while helping to plan new long-term projects. You can contact her directly at or 619.550.5668. Follow her on Twitter: @c_s_green.

    shrkb8 subscriber

    From what I've seen of the lineup, looks like the pro-SeaWorld side is over represented and the anti-SeaWorld side has just one spokesperson.  Three to one.  I am disappointed that it is not a level playing field.

    Martha Sullivan
    Martha Sullivan subscribermember

    A well-known and -respected elected leader very clearly stating her support for AB 2140:

    “In my 20 years as a San Diego County Supervisor, and 4 years as Encinitas Mayor and City Councilmember, I have been motivated to use the public forum to do good work on behalf of animals and the natural world. I am happy to have had the chance to have a public voice on this and other matters. I also had the chance as a teacher to educate children and families. And it is clear to me now that no matter what your walk of life, you can make a difference by living your beliefs. It really is simple and so very liberating to do so, and I encourage everyone to support AB 2140. It is truly the right thing to do."

    THANK YOU, Pam Slater-Price! And thank you, Cara Wilson Granat for more of your impactful writing.

    CCTS subscriber

    These are some of the things I would like Seaworld to answer as there is a lot more to this than Blackfish. People were protesting long before Blackfish was thought about and despite asking numerous times, no one will answer as I suspect as in the case of Kalina in this file, if they did, they would have to admit some of the things they have stated are simply not true as the truth is there in their parks.

    Hartmeasure subscriber

    Great event! But it's actually not the first time Sea World is talking to the public after Blackfish. UC San Diego's Associated Students Concert and Events did a Sea World debate/panel on April 14th where they brought in Dr. St Leger, Corporate Veterinarian for Pathology and Research for Sea World, to debate a UCSD Professor and answer questions from the public.

    Martha Sullivan
    Martha Sullivan subscribermember

    Thank you for organizing this! PLEASE do not make it on Tuesday, June 3rd -- Election Night!