The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy’s plans to create a new Shark Center in Provincetown received a major funding boost this week.
AWSC has been awarded a grant from the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism through a new program to support the state’s tourism industry and cultural facilities. The grant is being funded by Destination Development Capital as part of a post-pandemic economic recovery plan.
AWSC will receive $77,550 to be used for upgrades and renovations to create a new Shark Center at the nonprofit’s location at 16 MacMillan Wharf in Provincetown. The new center is scheduled to open in May 2022.
“We are thrilled to be a recipient of this grant and be recognized as an important educational and cultural destination,” said AWSC CEO and cofounder Cynthia Wigren. “The work we do researching great whites and educating the public is more critical now than ever before. This funding will allow us to improve our facility and expand our impact with Cape visitors and the local community alike.”
AWSC is one of 34 tourist destinations across the state that will be the first to benefit from these new DDC Grants in the upcoming year. A total of $2 million in capital grants were announced by the Baker-Polito Administration to provide funding for projects that expand, construct, restore or renovate Massachusetts tourism attractions.
Since 2013, AWSC has worked in collaboration with shark science experts, community partners, public and government officials, researchers, donors, friends and followers to augment scientific research, improve factors that affect public safety, and educate both the local and broader community to inspire a greater understanding of white sharks and conservation of the species. AWSC operates a Shark Center in Chatham where visitors can learn more about white sharks.