CLEVELAND -- TheGreater Cleveland Aquarium held itsgrand opening Thursday morning. The aquarium opens to the public on January 21.

Mayor Frank Jackson and members of council joined the aquarium's private partners, including Jacobs Entertainment and Marinescape to open the site using a balloon release meant to convey the image of cascading water.

Click here to see pictures from inside the aquarium

The Greater Cleveland Aquarium is offering preview days today and Friday for annual pass holders. The public will get its first chance to visit the aquarium on Saturday.

Located in the FirstEnergy Powerhouse at Nautica in the Flats, the Greater Cleveland Aquarium features 35 tanks that create an underwater environment.

The centerpiece is Marinescape's SeaTube. It's a walkthrough exhibit featuring a 500,000 gallon tank that gives visitors a panoramic view of the sea life including 15 sharks.

Other exhibits include those on Ohio Lakes and Rivers, the Florida Keys and the Everglades. There is also a Touch Tank, that allows you to get up close to rays, baby sharks and starfish.

"The aquarium is one of the many new attractions that will help reinforce downtown Cleveland as a destination for residents, international visitors and businesses," said Mayor Frank G. Jackson. "Cleveland has tremendous assets to build off of such as our waterfront, and projects such as this help to transform our city into an international destination."

Admission is $21.95 for adults and $15.95 for children ages 2-12. Annual passes are also available for $50 an adult, $90 per couple and $130 per family (two adults and two children). Parking is $3 Monday-Friday and $5 Saturday-Sunday.