Penobscot Bay Ringers, Midcoast Maine's first community handbell choir, will present a free workshop Saturday, Oct. 13 from 10 a.m. to noon at the First Congregational Church, 55 Elm St./Route 1.

Penobscot Bay Ringers will teach workshop attendees the fundamentals needed to make beautiful music with handbells. They also will share some of the fascinating tricks of the trade. There are many sounds to be made with a handbell, accomplished by ringing, plucking, shaking and striking the bell with a mallet or on a thick foam-padded table, just to name a few.

The ability to read music is helpful but not absolutely necessary. This handbell workshop is designed for individuals who are age 13 and older, and advance registration is required. To reserve your spot at the table, call Leigh Smith at 230-6628 or send email no later than Friday, Oct. 12.

Since its founding in June 2008, Penobscot Bay Ringers has performed at a variety of venues including the Camden Opera House, the Strom Auditorium in Rockport, the Alfond Arena in Orono and Old South Church in Boston, Massachusetts. One of the group’s missions is to bring handbell music to audiences that might not otherwise experience the orchestral sound of a five octave bell choir, said Smith, co-founder of the group. In 2012, it has taken handbell music to the Maine State Prison in Warren, the Quarry Hill Retirement Community in Camden and the Togus Veterans Administration Center in Augusta.

Penobscot Bay Ringers performs with five octaves each of Malmark handbells and Malmark Choirchimes®, which means that there are 122 different instruments at hand, each representing a pitch on the musical scale. Individual choir members are typically responsible for ringing between four and eight bells and/or handchimes, depending on the complexity of the musical score. The group rehearses Thursday evenings at the First Congregational Church in Camden.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115 or