Award-winning children’s author Mary Morton Cowan will present an illustrated talk to the Belfast Rotary Club Wednesday, June 1 about her latest book, “Captain Mac: the Life of Donald Baxter MacMillan, Arctic Explorer” (Calkins Creek, 2010).

The Belfast Rotary Club meets at the Waldo County Shrine Club, 20 Northport Ave., Wednesdays at noon for lunch, followed by a speaker. The public is welcome to attend; price for lunch is $10, and the talk is free.

“Captain Mac” is the adventurous life story of a man who explored and researched the eastern Arctic and subarctic for nearly 50 years, with many expeditions taking place aboard his own Arctic schooner, Bowdoin. The book features the vital role MacMillan played in Robert Peary’s 1908-09 North Pole expedition, as well as his relationships with explorers Peary, Matthew Henson and Richard Byrd. His distinguished career included many daring adventures, pioneering the use of radio and aircraft in Arctic exploration and countless contributions to environmental science and to the cultural understanding of eastern Arctic peoples. A number of extraordinary photographs augment the text.

“Captain Mac” has won several awards: the 2010 National Outdoor Book Award (Children’s category); a John Burroughs Award for an outstanding natural history book; an Honor Book with the Society of School Librarians International; listed on the Bank Street College Best Children’s Books of the Year, 2011 edition; and recommended by the National Science Teachers Association.

A graduate of Westbrook High School and Bates College, Cowan lives near Sebago Lake.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email to