Even wet weather couldn’t dampen enthusiasm for S.E.A. FAIR 2022, though it did delay it by a week. On Friday, June 10th, a lovely sunny day, representatives of environmental organizations gathered at the Camden Public Library Amphitheatre to introduce children and adults to their work for good stewardship of our environment.
With the generous sponsorship of Camden Public Library, First National Bank and First National Wealth Management, the Stewardship Education Alliance S.E.A. was able to make S.E.A. FAIR free for both organizations and the public. Participating organizations included: Coastal Mountains Land Trust, The Lobster Institute, The Natural Resources Council of Maine, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry, University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant, Knox-Lincoln County Soil & Water District, Rockport Conservation Commission, Maine Audubon, Hurricane Island Center for Science and Leadership, Herring Gut Coastal Science Center, Maine Environmental Education Association, Tanglewood Camp/4H, Camden Shade Tree Volunteers, Center for Wildlife Studies, and PeoplePlace Cooperative Preschool. The change in date forced some organizations to drop out, including Watershed School Climate Action Leadership Lab, The Chewonki Foundation, The Department of Maine Resources, The Wild Seed Project, Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association, and Megunticook Watershed Association, but we hope they will be at S.E.A. FAIR next year.
Children and their parents and grandparents enjoyed looking at plankton through the Herring Gut microscopes, and at sea creatures in the S.E.A Mobile Marine Tank, which included: periwinkles, hermit, green, Jonah, spider and rock crabs, and a lobster, and sea star all collected by Dom and Liz Gioia of Camden Harbor Cruises.
S.E.A.FAIR 2022 also offered an area for children’s activities. Lynn Rutter, member of the Board of S.E.A., and a skilled environmental educator, created a haven for children to explore their world through various media. There were low tables with paints, puzzles and books, art materials and sand to create seascapes, opportunities to explore rocks, shells, sea-creatures, water and seaweed, and a scavenger hunt with questions that encouraged children to visit the presenters’ tables. Jessica Kennelly representing the Center for Wildlife Studies, wrote: “The kids’ area and marine tank were a HUGE success. My daughter had to be there with me and I didn’t see her the entire time!” And Josie, age 4.5, said that she loved the Marine Tank because she got to touch a crab she saw at the beach one day, and she loved playing with Lynn, painting, drawing and doing the scavenger hunt. Josie reported that she learned that the sea star has eyes at the end of its arms, and she wants to tell her friends, “I had really fun!”
Miss Amy, Youth Services Manager at the Camden Public Library, also offered Story Time focussed on the sea and a sea-themed match game and craft. In her words: S.E.A. FAIR was, “A beautiful day filled with families milling and interacting and enjoying learning about being good stewards.”
S.E.A. is very grateful for the extraordinary support of Julie Pierce from Camden Public Library, and Michelle Curtis and Niki Janczura from The First. Without their guidance and enthusiasm S.E.A. FAIR might not have been possible.
Please join us next year at S.E.A. FAIR 2023!