Tortugas to help raise money for Turtle Patrol for the remainder of the year.
The Turtle Fest drew a good crowd in Flagler Beach Saturday, April 2. It celebrated its ninth year, thanks to Lori Ottlein, who started Turtle Fest in hopes of raising money for Turtle Patrol, the local volunteer organization dedicated to preserving turtle life on Flagler and Volusia Beaches. It is the exclusive fundraiser for Turtle Patrol and is needed to raise money and awareness. Ottlein wasn’t sure what would happen when she ran that first festival nine years ago, but every year it just gets bigger and bigger. Ottlein became involved 16 years ago with her very first turtle, 26-year old, Samantha.
Although Turtle Fest is great fun for families, its main purpose is to raise money and awareness to the patrons of the beaches. Although Flagler and Volusia Turtle Patrol are one unit, the funding is separate. The Volusia Turtle Patrol is provided funds through the state to operate, mainly from allowing vehicles on the beaches. For Flagler’s Turtle Patrol, Turtle Fest assures most of the group’s funding. To be able to operate Turtle Patrol they need to be able to protect the turtle nests. Required supplies include flags for marking turtle nests, and ATV fuel to drive the beach to locate any new nests. The Flagler Turtle Patrol’s supporters include Paul Chestnut and Scott Fox, new owners of Tortugas restaurant (formerly Fuego del Mar). an IPA, Tortugas will donate $1 to the Flagler Beach Turtle Patrol for every bottle of Terrapin Hopsecutioner beer they sell. The promotion raised $225 for Turtle Patrol in its first two weeks,. If they are able to keep that up, by the end of the year, they will have raised $4,275.
If you would like to help out our local Turtle Patrol you can adopt a nest or donate, by visiting the website, turtlepatrol.com.