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Friends of Sears Island switches science program to grab-and-go activity bags

Sept. 15 pickup date for this month's free bags
Sep 03, 2020
Courtesy of: Ashley Megquier Children examine a monarch caterpillar in the milkweed field on Sears Island.

Searsport — At the start of the school year, Friends of Sears Island (FOSI) typically kicks off Science Squad, a monthly after-school program for youth ages 5-12 and their parents that engages children as explorers, scientists, and stewards of the local environment. These programs are typically held in-person, but given the pandemic, FOSI has opted to offer families a socially distant, self-serve version of Science Squad this fall, in the form of free grab-and-go activity bags.

The theme for September is animal migrations, and this month’s kit will include lessons and activity guides about monarch butterfly and bird migrations. The activity bag will contain all the materials needed to make a pine cone bird feeder for birds journeying south, a small journal to keep track of migratory bird species, and a magnifying glass to encourage families to visit the milkweed field on Sears Island and look for monarchs in various stages of their life cycle.

“As families adapt to new ways of educating their children in this unprecedented time, we want to encourage them to use Sears Island as a natural classroom," said Ashley Megquier, FOSI outreach coordinator.

"We hope that these themed activity bags will inspire parents and their children to learn outdoors together. Parents are invited to bring their kids to pick up their kit and then stay to explore on Sears Island, but many of the activities can easily be done at home, too.”

The pickup date for this month will be Tuesday, Sept. 15, from 3:30 to 5 p.m. on Sears Island, but if families cannot make that time, they can pick up their bags at Carver Memorial Library in Searsport at their earliest convenience. To reserve a kit for your child, please email

Donations to FOSI are appreciated and allow the organization to continue to offer programming to all at no cost. Activity bag quantities are limited and will be distributed to families on a first-come, first-served basis.

To learn more about Friends of Sears Island, check out or



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