Earth, Space, and Kids at the Science Center

I’m raising funds to make sure that kids in northern Maine can continue learning about space and nature science at the Francis Malcolm Science Center. I’m a retired teacher and know first hand that young people learn better with hands-on, practical, and creative programs. And that’s what the Francis Malcolm Science Center (FMSC) does really well.  

WHAT'S THE FRANCIS MALCOLM SCIENCE CENTER? – The FMSC is a nonprofit organization that provides a unique place for year-round science explorations from Earth to Universe with a focus on astronomy and the natural environment for children and learners of all ages. The Science Center is surrounded by field and forest in the small, rural community of Easton in northern Maine, next to the Canadian border. Photo: Francis Malcolm Science Center, Easton, Maine

Like most small nonprofit organizations everywhere, the FMSC relies on donations and grants to keep its doors open and programs strong. With a volunteer board and one part-time staff person, it’s a constant challenge to raise funds needed to sustain the Science Center.

It’s really important to me that children can explore, wonder, and discover with hands-on science learning – that’s exactly what they get at the Science Center. With your donation, you’ll be supporting the next generation of space and nature scientists, enthusiasts, and advocates!

Since 1983, the Science Center has delighted and provided alternative learning for children, families, academics, educators, and learners of all ages and abilities near and far. Here’s a bit of what the Science Center offers:

SPACE SCIENCE & ASTRONOMY – The Science Center is home to the nation’s northeastern-most Planetarium Theatre where everyone can enjoy a 3D view under the 24-foot dome of programs such as galactic astronomy, dark matter, and achievements in space exploration. An exciting new addition is their Observatory, home to the “Goliath” telescope with a retractable roof to view the night sky. Its construction was led by a Boy Scout, many volunteers, and generous support of local businesses. Photo: Construction of the observatory

NATURE & ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE – The Science Center’s 140-acre Outdoor Nature Classroom of mixed forest and northern peatland flat bog is abundant with wildlife, local plants, and flowers. In all seasons, people enjoy over 3-miles of trails for exploring, hiking, and snowshoeing, learning about ecosystems, or reading picture books with Tale on a Trail, like "Have You Heard of the Nesting Bird?" by Rita Gray. They’re even developing a Black Spruce Bog Walk! The Center’s Indoor Nature Classroom offers hands-on discovery of environmental and physical science, including rocks and minerals, sealife, birds, and fossils. Photo: Children of all ages learning

IN THEIR OWN WORDS – The Science Center’s hands-on experience is “priceless, and can’t be duplicated in a classroom at school,” says Stacy Michaud, a Grade 2 teacher from Caribou Community School. “We’re lucky to have access to such a resource for alternative learning.”

Children are excited about what they learn first hand at the Science Center. What they experience matters to them. Here’s some direct feedback:

• Genevieve, a Grade 6 student from Presque Isle Middle School, shares her excitement, “I learned that you just have to take a minute to realize how cool or wonderful the forest is and nature in general.”

• And Liam in Grade 2 from Caribou, shares what he found interesting about bird adaptation, “How they you’s ther beck to eat bug’s.”

• Or what Hudson, a Grade 6 student in Presque Isle says what he found interesting on the Science Center’s trails, “ …. the White Pine and Red Pine have a different number of needles in a bunch. White pine has 5, and the Red Pine has 2.” He wonders, “how many different  trees there are.” 

HOW YOUR FUNDS WILL BE USED – I know you have many options for your charitable dollars, so I value whatever you can give to the Science Center. The volunteer board makes sure every dollar counts, directing 100% of your dollars toward keeping the doors open and programs strong. Your gift will support basic operating costs, like lights and heat (especially during our long, cold northern Maine winters!) and hands-on, public educational programming in space and nature science for children and learners of all ages.

THANK YOU for considering a gift to the Francis Malcolm Science Center. Your generosity creates opportunities for many great things to happen. FMSC is a Maine public 501(c)3 nonprofit. All contributions are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Who was Francis Malcolm? – Francis Malcolm was an educator who grew up on the property where the Science Center is located in Easton, Maine. His legacy lives on through the people who learn how to care for the world around us and make it a better place for everyone. 



Elizabeth Arata Orser
Cumberland Center, ME
Francis Malcolm Science Center Inc
Registered nonprofit
Donations are typically 100% tax deductible in the US.

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