Students outside the Gates Center in spring

Best of Acadia: Back to College

July 10–14, 2017

Monday, July 10 at 9 a.m.
Thomas S. Gates, Jr. Community Center
The Epic Journey of How The Land & Garden Preserve Came To Be
Guest: Rodney Eason, CEO Land and Garden Preserve.

What makes Asticou Azalea Garden, Thuya Garden, Little Long Pond, and the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Garden feel like a connected landscape stretching from Northeast Harbor to Seal Harbor? Join the Preserve’s Rodney Eason as he explains how these different lands and gardens are becoming one organization for current and future generations to enjoy.

Monday, July 10 at 5 p.m.
Thomas S. Gates, Jr. Community Center (a reception will immediately follow in The Turrets)
The Creation of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument
Guest: Lucas St. Clair

In 2011, Lucas St. Clair took over his family’s operating foundation, Elliotsville Plantation, Inc. (EPI). EPI owns 125,000 acres of timberland in Northern and central Maine that they have been purchasing since 1998. They have been managing the land and adding infrastructure for recreation over the last several years. To celebrate the 100 anniversary of the National Park Service, President Barack Obama accepted the gift of 89,000 acres of land from EPI and created the newest unit of the National Park Service, Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument on Aug 24th, 2016. Lucas and EPI continue to play a role in the development of the region and enhancing the community’s ability to capitalize on the newly realized asset. 

Tuesday, July 11 at 9 a.m.
Thomas S. Gates, Jr. Community Center
Coffee and Conversation: Civic Engagement in Maine
Guests: Ann Luther, Treasurer and Advocacy Chair of the League of Women Voters of Maine and COA faculty member Jamie McKown, James Russell Wiggins Chair in Government and Polity

Wednesday, July 12 at 9 a.m.
Thomas S. Gates, Jr. Community Center
A Sweet Story: Maine’s Wild Blueberry Industry
Guest: Dr. David Yarborough, University of Maine Professor and Extension Blueberry Specialist

Dr. Yarborough will share the story of Maine’s noble, agricultural heritage symbol — the wild blueberry. First used by the Native Americans for their flavor, nutrition, and healing qualities, blueberries have been harvested commercially in the state since the 1840’s, and continue to be grown today across 44,000 acres in fields and barrens that stretch along the Downeast coast to the state’s southwest corner, becoming a leading economic industry in Maine.

Thursday, July 13 at 9 a.m.
Thomas S. Gates, Jr. Community Center
MDI’s Working Waterfront, Then and Now
Guest: Natalie Springuel, Maine Sea Grant Marine Extension Associate

“Behind every fishing boat is a strong working waterfront,” says the Maine Coastal Program Working Waterfront Initiative. Commercial fishing and marine trades in Maine contribute more than $800 million annually to the state’s economy and employ about 30,000 people, and yet there are complex issues and trends that impact the cultural tradition and whether it can be sustained on MDI. Natalie Springuel will provide perspective on how our community is navigating these waters.

Friday, July 14 at 9 a.m.
Thomas S. Gates, Jr. Community Center
The Local Effect: Is tourism taking a toll on our community?

How much is too much? Are we an island in the sun or a sunken treasure? Our panel will discuss:

Alison Beane, Executive Director, Island Housing Trust
John Kelly, Acadia National Park Planner
Martha Searchfield, Executive Director, Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce
Dick Cough, Bar Harbor Parking Solutions Task Force
Eben Salvatore, Bar Harbor Cruise Ship Cmte., Ocean Properties/Harborside Hotel Manager
Earl Brechlin, Editor Mount Desert Islander, Moderator

Friday, July 14 at 6 p.m.
Northeast Harbor Town Pier
Sea Princess Sunset Cruise

Seating for this event is limited. Please sign up early.


Learn something new every day!