Outrigger Kona Resort and Spa to Host Free ‘Manta Talks’ Event

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A Kona resort is partnering with a research organization to help protect a gentle ocean giant and is hosting an upcoming event for guests and anyone who wants to learn more.

Outrigger Kona Resort and Spa is hosting a free “Manta Talks” event from 1-7 p.m. Tuesday, May 24, at its Manta Center. The event will feature Keller Laros, president of Manta Pacific Research Foundation, and Csilla Ari-G’Agostino, a leading researcher from the University of South Florida. Acclaimed marine biologist and filmmaker Rick Rosenthal also will show a sneak preview of his latest film, “Alien Contact: Manta Rays.”

Attendance and parking for the “Manta Talks” event also are free.


Outrigger Hospitality Group recently announced a partnership with Manta Pacific Research Foundation, a leading organization for manta ray research, education and conservation. The two organizations will work together to observe and protect the giant manta rays of Keauhou Bay fronting Outrigger Kona Resort and Spa, while also educating guests and promoting responsible travel practices.

“Outrigger is fortunate to have these gentle, giant manta rays as our neighbors here in Kona,” Steve Solberg, general manager of Outrigger Kona Resort and Spa, said in a press release. “We are delighted to re-engage in this synergistic partnership with Manta Pacific Research Foundation as part of our brand’s larger Outrigger’s ZONE global conservation initiative, which seeks to preserve and protect the health of our oceans and marine life such as corals and manta rays.”

The “Manta Talks” event will provide a thorough examination of manta ray behavior, conservation and more. There will also be discussion about manta ray tourism along the Kona Coast, focusing on its history and growth and how humans can help protect the rays in their natural habitat. The Kona Coast is one of the only places in the world where people can consistently view giant manta rays up close.


“Manta rays are some of the smartest, most interesting creatures to study – and it is our mission to preserve this majestic species for generations to come,” Laros said in the press release. “It is wonderful to have a like-minded partner with Outrigger who understands the importance of protecting this wild, natural and truly authentic experience and educating global visitors about the rich history of manta rays in Kona, Hawai‘i.”

For more information about Outrigger Kona Resort and Spa, click here.

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