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Georgia Aquarium

by Chris Schroder

Next year marks the 10th anniversary of downtown Atlanta’s arguably most popular attraction: the Georgia Aquarium.

After founding the Israel Democracy Institute and the Marcus Institute for children with brain-related illnesses, donating millions to the CDC and his team visiting 56 aquariums, Home Depot Co-founder Bernie Marcus donated $250 million to launch the Georgia Aquarium.

The 500,000-sf jewel on Centennial Olympic Park opened debt-free and reached 1 million visitors in its first 100 days. It now houses approximately 100,000 fish and 500 species. It has remodeled or expanded several times, including a $110 million dolphin exhibit, which opened in 2011.

– Mark C. McDonald, Georgia Trust

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