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UMaine Hosting Northern Maine Children’s Water Festival

More than 700 students and teachers from 15 middle and elementary schools throughout northern and central Maine will convene on Tuesday, Oct. 9, at the University of Maine campus for the 10th biennial Northern Maine Children’s Water Festival. The festival is a fun-filled way for students to learn about the value of clean water and healthy habitats, and to provide teachers with materials and lessons that they can use for years to come. At the festival, water resource professionals from Maine and other parts of New England provide presentations and interactive displays about water, wetlands, human health and aquatic life.

The festival will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The main exhibit space will be the UMaine Field House, although activities will be held in buildings in the western half of campus.

Award-winning musician, author, and storyteller Steve Schuch will provide this year’s entertainment. Mr. Schuch’s pieces have been featured on National Public Radio, and Public Broadcasting Service, and his children’s album, “Trees of Life,” received a Parent’s Choice Gold Award. Students will listen and sing along with Schuch as he weaves history and science together in his performance. Several local media personalities, including Todd Simcox and Tim Throckmorton from WABI TV5 and Cindy Michaels from WVII will participate as hosts of the water trivia game show, “Dripial Pursuit.” Joined by a team of water “experts,” they will pose water resource questions to competing teams of students from each school. Students will enjoy a variety of educational exhibits and presentations including “The Dangerous and Interesting Lives of Puffins,” presented by the Puffin Project; “Where Does Water Go?” presented by the National Weather Service; “Electricity and Water Quality,” presented by the Maine Energy Education Program; and “The Great Maine Water Bug Safari,” presented by The Bug Man, a natural history educator.

This experience is provided at no cost to the participants, and the festival budget includes funding to help schools pay for the cost of transportation to UMaine for the day. Festival attendance is limited, and schools are selected to attend on a competitive basis.

The schools scheduled to attend the festival are the Adams School (Castine), Appleton Village School (Appleton), Camden-Rockport Middle School (Camden), Fort O’Brien Elementary School (Machiasport), Greenville Schools (Greenville), Holbrook Middle School (Holden), Lamoine School (Lamoine), Madison Jr. High School (Madison), Medway Middle School (Medway), Mill Pond School (Hodgdon), Penobscot Community School (Penobscot), Sedgwick Elementary School (Sedgwick), Dedham School (Dedham), Asa C. Adams School (Orono) and Weatherbee School (Hampden).

Major sponsors of the Northern Maine Children’s Water Festival include the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, the University of Maine Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Environmental and Watershed Research, the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, UMaine’s Sustainability Solutions Initiative, Verso Paper and the UMaine-based Maine Sea Grant.

Contact: Ruth Hallsworth, (207) 581-3196; Jessica Bloch, (207) 581-3777 or

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