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Whitecaps sell $1 million in face masks in 3 days to save Vancouver Aquarium

"It takes a village."
Photo: Vancouver Whitecaps / twitter

The Vancouver Whitecaps FC have raised over a whopping million dollars in high-performance athletic face masks, with all net proceeds going towards saving the Vancouver Aquarium.

The soccer club tweeted about the surge in weekend sales on Monday morning, remarking that supporters had purchased a million dollars worth of face masks in a mere three days. In additon, they added that that purchases were made across the world, including the Netherlands, Austria, France, Portugal, Japan and the United Kingdom.  

Last week, Lasse Gustavsson, Chief Executive Officer at the Vancouver Aquarium, told Vancouver Is Awesome in a phone call that it may only be a matter of months before the beloved aquarium is shut down.  

The iconic Vancouver facility closed to the public on March 17. On March 31, it laid off 345 employees, which amounts to 60% of its workforce. From rescued sea lions to otters, seals to jellies, fish to birds - basic animal care and facility costs at the Vancouver Aquarium exceed $1 million dollars each month. However, the facility reports that revenue has dropped from approximately $3 million to almost zero.

Ocean Wise Conservation Association reported that it has raised over half a million dollars in just over a week since the Vancouver Aquarium announced that it might be forced to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With that being said, Gustavsson stated that the Aquarium's expenses to care for the animals, and to keep the water circulating in its builing, are over $1 million a month.

The Vancouver Aquarium tweeted about the soaring sales on Monday afternoon, remarking that, "This is absolutely incredible, thank you SO much," and adding that, "It takes a village."

Now, people can purchase one of four high-quality face masks, with each offering a special design, drawing inspiration from the ’Caps crest and the Vancouver Aquarium. The Vancouver Whitecaps note that the masks can be worn for long periods of time with no irratation due to a soft spun polyester lining close to the skin. They add that the mask, "makes use of double needle stitched binding for comfort and durability. Performance-wicking and made with 100 per cent polyester, it also features white piping that gives a visual indication when it’s time to wash the face mask."

The face masks come in small, medium and large and offer a, "stretchy ear-loop for maximum comfort." They also offer an, "Internal sleeve pouch allowing you to insert a filter of your choice."