The Marine Aquarium Conference of North America, or MACNA as abbreviated, is happy to announce they with host their 2016 conference in beautiful, sunny San Diego, California.  Returning to Southern California for the first time in two decades, the conference will be held at the Town and Country Resort and Convention center September 9th-11th.  The conference boasts the “biggest and best” marine aquarium conference in the world. To back up their claim they are bringing prestigious and innovative speakers as well as top vendors from all around the world. They proudly claim sponsors such as Triton GmbH, Instant Ocean, CoralVue, Neptune Systems, Two Little Fishies, Reef Nutrition, Rod’s Food, JBJ, eShopps, and San Francisco Bay Brand. Needless to say, if marine aquariums are your passion then MACNA is definitely the place for you.

macna 2016

What is MACNA?

MACNA stands for Marine Aquarium Conference North America and is easily considered among the top conferences and trade shows in the marine aquarium field across the globe. In fact, It is also the oldest marine aquarium conference in North America. Vendors and visitors alike come from all over the world to explore the conference and see the latest products, techniques, and findings in the marine aquarium world. Attendees without a doubt will have the opportunity to interact with some of the most innovative and intelligent aquarists in the industry.

Before getting to MACNA, registering for the conference is a must. You can register here and choose from a variety of passes. The first option and the best value is the the full conference registration ($159)  which includes three days of exhibit floor access, speakers, workshops, and prize drawings as well as a Friday Reception and Saturday Banquet. Also, you can choose the MACNA 2016 Weekend Pass ($100) which includes weekend admission (Friday through Sunday) to the conference with access to the exhibit floor, speaker, workshops, and prize drawings.  There is also the MACNA 2016 Single-Day Pass ($35) which grants access to the exhibit floor plus any speaker, workshops, or prize drawings schedules for the single day you choose to attend. Finally you can opt to purchase an Adult reception pass ($60) or Adult Banquet pass ($85) if your other registration does not grant you access to those events already. This pass is admission to the Friday Reception or Adult Banquet, respectively, only. Space is limited so make sure to register today!


Getting to MACNA

For the first time since 1998, MACNA returns to Southern California for its 27th year.  In sunny San Diego, MACNA 2016 will be held at the Town and Country Resort and Convention Center, centrally located in the heart of San Diego. MACNA patrons can receive a discounted room rate of $134 a night with no resort fee as well as discounted $5 per day parking as well. Compared to the full retail price of about $199 a night plus $16.88 per day resort fee, that’s a good discount!

Since this discount is supported by the conference purchasing a room block, space is limited. Every room booked at the special conference room rates benefit MACNA 2016 by allowing them to keep costs low. To make the process as effortless as possible, to register online make sure to use the link here or use the conference’s website to reserve your room!

In addition to discounted hotel rates, MACNA has also been able to offer discounted shuttle rates between San Diego International Airport and the Town and Country Resort and Convention Center. SuperShuttle is able to offer a $6 special discount for any roundtrip travel using their service from August 19th through September 11th. Reservations are a must so make sure to reserve online here or by calling 1-800-258-3826 using discount code MACNA (a $2 booking fee will apply when using reservations via phone).

If the shuttle isn’t for you, popular car service Uber is offering a promotion code uberMACNA when signing up for uber and get $15 off your first ride.



Who and What to expect

While the schedule is still very TBD (see for yourself here) some of the 2016 conference speakers and workshops have been announced. These speakers include:

  • Craig Bingman
  • Mark Callahan
  • Charles Delbeek
  • James Fatherree
  • Bob Fenner
  • Todd Gardner
  • Anthony Gill
  • Justin Grabel
  • David Hammontree
  • Austin Lefevre
  • Sanjay Joshi
  • Marc Levenson
  • Richard Pyle
  • Dana Riddle
  • Luiz Rocha
  • Richard Ross
  • Sonia J. Rowley
  • Wayne Scott
  • Walt Smith
  • Laura Simmons
  • Ret Talbot
  • Sandy Trautwein
  • Ramon Villaverde
  • Matt Wandell

And that is just the short list! This is definitely an interesting and diverse list of speakers to look forward too. In addition to speakers and workshops, many exhibitors will be at the conference so you can expand your knowledge of the reef and aquarium hobby. For the first time ever, MACNA is including an interactive map of their exhibitor’s layout on their website. Make sure to check it out before you pack your bags as well as all the other fun things to do in San Diego!


References and photos courtesy of