Marine Aquarium Conference of North America

The Marine Aquarium Conference of North America® (or MACNA®) is the oldest marine aquarium conference in North America.
MACNA is a combination of several events.

• It is an educational symposium where people can attend lectures from industry leaders, conservationists, authors, and scientists.

• A trade show, where hobbyists can buy the hottest new corals and see new cutting edge equipment. Attendees can also give their feedback to manufacturers so they can continue to bring us the innovations that continue to advance our industry.

• Lastly, it is a social event where speakers, vendors, and hobbyists come to socialize with one another. It gives all of us an opportunity to put faces with names you might see on a message board, email, or even YouTube.

Every year, a club who is a member of the Marine Aquarium Society of America® (MASNA®) is chosen to host MACNA. Bidding for MACNA is done the same way as the Olympics. Interested clubs submit a plan to MASNA telling them why they should be chosen as a host. The entire event is organized and operated by volunteers who are simply trying to help out their local club.


MACNA 2017

Bayou Reefkeeping (BRK) is elated to announce that MACNA® 2017 will be held in New Orleans, Louisiana, August 25th – 27th, 2017 at the Ernest M. Morial Convention Center and Hilton Riverside Hotel. MACNA® 2017 is proudly sponsored by: Aquaforest, Deepwater Distribution, Maxspect International, Central Pets, Coral Vue, Reef Nutrition, eShopps, and more!



MASNA Aquarist of the Year

Each year at the annual MACNA conference, MASNA presents an award to the person who is considered to have made an outstanding recent contribution to the marine aquarium hobby. This person is selected by marine aquarium hobbyists around the world.

Voting as of 2014

• Before MACNA, current MASNA members can post their nominations on the MASNA website for that year’s Aquarist of the Year. This is a “write-in vote”. From there, each entry will be tallied, and the nominees and their biographies will be presented to the panel of previous recipients for the selection of that year’s winner of the MASNA Aquarist of the Year award.

MASNA Student Scholarship Program

The Marine Aquarium Societies of North America’s (MASNA) Student Scholarship program provides funding for undergraduate and graduate college students to pursue their degrees in a marine science discipline.

Applications for the awards are judged based on the applicant’s enrollment in a marine science undergraduate I graduate degree, a G.P.A. of 2.5 or greater, and their proven contributions and demonstrated commitment to the marine aquarium hobby. Funding for the MASNA Student Scholarships are provided by corporate industry sponsors, private sponsors, and MASNA.


The History of MACNA!

Twenty eight years and going strong! If you do not see your local club listed here, talk to your fellow members and do something about it!

MACNA Host Club / Location (Click for Photos) Dates MASNA Student Scholarship Winners MASNA Aquarist of the Year Keynote / Banquet Speaker(s)
I Marine Aquarium Society of Toronto April 22-23, 1989 Helmut Debelius, Martin Moe
II Cleveland Saltwater Enthusiasts Association April 21-22, 1990  Neville Coleman
III Windows to the Sea Marine Aquarium Society (New Jersey) April 20-21, 1991 Helmut Debelius
IV Florida Marine Aquarium Society September 20-21, 1992
V Marine Aquarium Society of Toronto September 12-13, 1993 Dr. Daphne Fautin & Dr. Robert Richmond
VI Cleveland Saltwater Enthusiasts Association October 14-16, 1994 Dr. Richard Pyle
VII Louisville Marine Aquarium Society September 14-16, 1995 Martin Moe Dr. Gerald Allen
VIII Kansas City Metro Aquatics Council October 11-13, 1996 Tom Frakes
IX Chicago Marine Aquarium Society September 12-14, 1997 Bill Addison Julian Sprung & Charles Delbeek
X Marine Aquarium Society of Los Angeles September 25-27, 1998 Dr. Bruce Carlson John Dyer
XI Louisville Marine Aquarium Society September 10-12, 1999 Scott Michael Burt Jones & Maurine Shimlock
XII Florida Marine Aquarium Society (Fort Lauderdale) September 29 – October 1, 2000 Larry Jackson
XIII Chesapeake Marine Aquarium Society (Baltimore) August 17-19, 2001 Dr. Ron Shimek Dr. Charlie Veron
XIV Dallas-Fort Worth Marine Aquarium Society September 27-29, 2002 Eric Borneman Walt Smith
XV Louisville Marine Aquarium Society September 5-7, 2003 Anthony Calfo Denise & Larry Tackett
XVI Boston Reefers Society October 14-16, 2004 Julian Sprung Dr. Richard Pyle
XVII Washington D.C. Area Marine Aquarium Society September 16-18, 2005 Bob Fenner Jon Hoech
XVIII Marine Aquarium and Reef Society of Houston September 22-24, 2006 Dr. Sanjay Joshi Walt Smith
XIX Pittsburgh Marine Aquarium Society September 14-16, 2007 Dr. Randy Holmes-Farley Dr. Gerald Allen
XX Atlanta Reef Club September 5-7, 2008 Charles Delbeek Joanne Ruxton
XXI New Jersey Reefers Club (Atlantic City) September 25-27, 2009 Brita Mjos Matt Pedersen Richie Kohler
XXII Orlando Reef Caretakers Association September 3-5, 2010 Kristin Privitera-Johnson Dr. Matt Wittenrich David Vosseler
XXIII Greater Iowa Reef Society (Des Moines) September 9-11, 2011 Chris Jury Dana Riddle David Hannan
XXIV Dallas Ft Worth Marine Aquarium Society September 28-30, 2012 Zach Ostroff & Bobby Ortiz Kevin Kohen Jean-Michel Cousteau
XXV Florida Marine Aquarium Society (Hollywood) August 30 – September 1, 2013 Adeljean Ho & Drew Delorenzo Todd Gardner Dr. Richard Pyle
XXVI Colorado Organization for Reef and Aquatic Life (Denver) August 29-31, 2014 Ross DeAngelis & Sam May Richard Ross Dr. Luiz Rocha
XXVII Washington D.C. Area Marine Aquarist Society September 4-6, 2015 Liz Marchio & Tim Lyons Terry Siegel Dr. Bruce Carlson
XXVIII San Diego Marine Aquarium Foundation September 9-11, 2016 Elizabeth Groover & Kory Enneking Joe Yaiullo Jason Hewlett (Entertainer)
XXIX Bayou Reefkeeping (New Orleans) August 25 – 27, 2017



• MACNA Website.
• MACNA Facebook page.
• MACNA 2017 Facebook event.
• MACNA Twitter profile.
• MACNA 2014 Presentations
• MACNA 2016 Presentations


The Early MACNA’s

Tom McCarthy of the Cleveland Saltwater Enthusiasts’ Association (C-SEA) made a phone call to Scott Dyer of the Marine Aquarium Society of Toronto (MAST). The idea presented was to organize a joint event featuring a prominent speaker to be attended by both societies’ memberships. Scott replied to Tom that he had been thinking along the same lines and it was from this simple start that the idea of a weekend conference was born. MAST agreed to host the first Marine Aquarium Conference of North America (MACNA) and C-SEA agreed to reciprocate the following year.

MACNA I (1989)



MACNA II (1990)



MACNA III (1991)

MACNA IV (1992)

MACNA V (1993)

MACNA VI (1994)

MACNA VII (1995)

Notable products showcased at MACNA

• MACNA 2005: Ecotech Marine VorTech prototype
• MACNA 2008: Ecotech Marine VorTech MP40
• MACNA 2011: Ecotech Marine VorTech MP60
• MACNA 2012: BuildMyLED
• MACNA 2013: Ecotech Reef Link
• MACNA 2013: Apex Fusion
• MACNA 2014: MaxSpect Gyre Pump
• MACNA 2015: Ecotech Vectra M1 D.C. pump
• MACNA 2015: Smart ATO Micro
• MACNA 2015: MindStream
• MACNA 2016: Alkalinity Monitor

External Links

Third Party Reviews

• Reef Builders: 11 Reasons to go to a MACNA conference
• Melev’s Reef: What is MACNA? Why should you attend?
• MACNA 1989: MAST’S History
• MACNA 1992: Dave Sheehy’s MACNA 1992 Review
• MACNA 1993: MAST’s History
• MACNA 1994: Announcement of MACNA VI
• MACNA 2000: Terry Siegel’s review of MACNA XII 2000
• MACNA 2000:’s review of MACNA XII 2000
• MACNA 2002: Kevin Kuykendall’s MACNA Mania
• MACNA 2003: Melev’s Review
• MACNA 2005: Fishfreek’s aquariumadvice Review
• MACNA 2005: Melev’s photos / review of speakers
• MACNA 2010: MACNA XXII – Matt Pedersen’s Story
• MACNA 2010: Gary Parr’s MACNA 2010 review
• MACNA 2015: Melev’s MACNA 2015 recap

Third Party Pictures

• MACNA 1989: Poster of the first MACNA
• MACNA 1998: Aquarium Design’s photos.
• MACNA 1999: Tim O’Dear’s photos
• MACNA 2003: Melev’s photos
• MACNA 2004: Ewan’s Reef Central photos
• MACNA 2005: Melev’s photos
• MACNA 2006: Rendos’ Reef Central photos
• MACNA 2006: MASNA Booth
• MACNA 2007: Melev’s photos.
• MACNA 2007: Walt’s MACNA 2007 Banquet Video.
• MACNA 2008: Victor90’s ReefCentral photos.
• MACNA 2012: Melev’s photos.
• MACNA 2014: Matt Rogers’ 3Reef photos.