The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association Begins Virtual Science Speaker Series with Jack Dubinsky

Nantucket, MA – The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association (MMA) is moving its summer Science Speaker Series online due to COVID-19. The series will kick off with Aquarium Manager Jack Dubinsky on Wednesday, June 3, 2020 at 7:00 pm. Jack’s talk is entitled, “Lovely Oceans: A discussion of the fascinating reproductive biology and contemporary issues affecting procreation in marine organisms.”

Join Jack for a fascinating discussion about reproductive behaviors in the ocean. First, he will discuss the basics about reproduction in the ocean. Then he will look at the most romantic, dramatic, and bizarre case studies of reproductive strategies. Finally, he will discuss how human activity is affecting the success of procreation in important marine species.

Jack has been interested in sea creatures since he was a child. He began his journey with MMA at the age of 12, when he first volunteered at the aquarium. He later received a marine science degree at The Evergreen State College and is currently the director of the MMA Aquarium. Jack’s research background includes goby-shrimp symbioses, Green Crab population dynamics, and comb jelly physiology.

The Maria Mitchell Association will be hosting a virtual speaker each Wednesday evening from 7:00-8:00 as part of its summer Science Speaker Series. The lectures will be free and viewable on Zoom. The link to each lecture will be shared on the Maria Mitchell Association’s website and social media.

ACKlimate sponsors the Maria Mitchell Association Speaker Series.

The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association (MMA) is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages.

Bird-at-home-a-thon on Nantucket

 Nantucket, MA – On May 15-16, we invite birders young and old, experienced and novice, from all over Massachusetts and especially on our beautiful Nantucket island to join Mass Audubon and the Maria Mitchell Association in an annual Bird-a-thon. This effort helps our organizations collect information on the biodiversity of our feathered friends on the island and beyond.

Due to COVID-19, the event was re-imagined by Mass Audubon as its first ever Bird-at-home-a-thon. With social distancing in mind, team members will bird from the safety of their own homes or from a nearby greenspace within walking or biking distance. We encourage participants to ask family and friends to bird as well

It will be a carbon-free, safety-focused, and family-friendly event! We hope the accessibility of this event will enable more people on Nantucket and those with connections on Nantucket to participate.

The goal will be to identify as many species of birds in a 24-hour period and also complete other fun, nature-based activities to earn team points. We need the help of the entire Nantucket community to make this event a success.

This Bird-at-home-a-thon serves as a reminder of the variety and abundance of wildlife that surrounds us and our responsibility to preserve the habitats of our beautiful and varied bird species.

All donations and pledges raised for the Nantucket WS/MMA TEAM will be equally shared between the Maria Mitchell Association, Nantucket’s Science Center and the Nantucket Wildlife Sanctuaries of Mass Audubon.

Nantucket residents and non-residents can participate in a number of ways. Donors can choose to pledge an amount per species seen (we typically observe around 100 species), or donate any amount regardless of the number of species we record!

Are you new to birding or are you participating with your kids? There will also be a number of activities for families including bird drawing and bird photography.  It will be a blast!

Sponsors this year include Presenting Sponsors Ream Design of Ayer and Camosse Masonry Supply of Worcester and Media Sponsor, public radio station WBUR.

To participate, donate, and to learn more about Bird-a-thon, please visit www.mariamitchell.org or www.massaudubon.org/birdathon.

   ######

Mass Audubon protects more than 38,000 acres of land throughout Massachusetts and 950 acres on Nantucket, saving birds and other wildlife, and making nature accessible to all. As Massachusetts’ largest nature conservation nonprofit, we welcome more than a half million visitors a year to our wildlife sanctuaries and 20 nature centers. From inspiring hilltop views to breathtaking coastal landscapes, serene woods, and working farms, we believe in protecting our state’s natural treasures for wildlife and for all people—a vision shared in 1896 by our founders, two extraordinary Boston women.

The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association (MMA) is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages.

$100,000 in Massachusetts Historic Preservation Grant Awards Announced: 14 Projects To Receive Matching Funds For Exterior Work On Historic Buildings

Press Release
For Immediate Release, April 27, 2020

Preservation Massachusetts Contact
Jim Igoe or Erin Kelly, jigoe@preservationmass.org , ekelly@preservationmass.org, 617-723-3383
1772 Foundation Contact
Mary Anthony The 1772 Foundation, maryanthony@1772foundation.org

Plymouth, MA – Preservation Massachusetts, in partnership with The 1772 Foundation, has announced the final recipients of a new historic preservation grant program for Massachusetts. Preservation Massachusetts is the statewide non-profit historic preservation organization dedicated to preserving the Commonwealth’s historic and cultural heritage and The 1772 Foundation, based in Providence, RI, plays a leading role in promoting historic preservation nationwide.

In their most recent grant round, the 1772 Foundation worked with the six New England statewide historic preservation organizations, including Preservation Massachusetts, to administer 1:1 matching grants of up to $10,000. Grants will be given to historic preservation projects for building exteriors. At their quarterly meeting, the trustees of The 1772 Foundation awarded $100,000 in grants to 14 Massachusetts projects, based on recommendations from Preservation Massachusetts. A total of

$600,000 was awarded to seventy-nine grants from all six New England statewide organizations.

Grant recipients in Massachusetts were Historic Deerfield, Inc. (The Creelman House $10,000), Alden Kindred of America, Inc. (Alden House Historic Site $2,600), Great Barrington Historical Society (The Truman Wheeler House $7,500), Historic New England (The Walter Gropius House $10,000), The Royall House Association (The Royall House and Slave Quarters $5,000), The Maria Mitchell Association (The Maria Mitchell House $8,250), Waterfront Historic Area League (First Baptist Church $10,000), Historic Newton (Durant-Kenrick House $10,000), Sons and Daughters of Hawley (East Hawley Meeting House

$10,000), Plymouth Antiquarian Society (The Spooner House Museum $3,358), Essex National Heritage Commission (Assistant Light Keeper’s House on Baker’s Island $5,000), Old Colony History Museum (Bristol Academy $10,000), Chase Library Association, Inc. (The Chase Library $4,812) and Canton Historical Society (David & Abigail Tilden House $3,480).

President and CEO of Preservation Massachusetts Jim Igoe states, “This new funding opportunity brought to Massachusetts by the 1772 Foundation was a great opportunity for stewards of historic buildings all across the Commonwealth. The reception to this grant was overwhelming with over

$700,000 in funding being requested through our first round of inquiry letters. It clearly demonstrates the great need for funds to ensure these historic structures remain intact and in use for years to come. The organizations we have awarded grants to are remarkable stewards of these shared community assets and we are pleased to see their projects come to fruition. We are also extremely grateful to The 1772 Foundation for this collaborative opportunity which has enriched our organization and staff with deeper knowledge and connections with organizations and communities from the Cape to Berkshires. We look forward to continuing to work with The 1772 Foundation and also find other opportunities to expand funding for historic preservation projects like these across Massachusetts.”

1772 Foundation Board President B. Danforth Ely remarked, “Small matching grants for brick-and-mortar preservation projects have long played an important role in the 1772 Foundation’s grant making, as it was the passion of it’s founder, Stewart B. Kean. However, this is the first year that we have opened the program up to all six New England states, and the expansion has been enthusiastically received. We have been fortunate to work with six fantastic statewide organizations, whose local community knowledge has proven invaluable. The vast response to this grant has also shown to the Foundation how necessary these brick-and-mortar grants are to keeping our historic structures standing.”

About Preservation Massachusetts:

Preservation Massachusetts was established in 1985 as Historic Massachusetts, Inc. We are the statewide non-profit organization that actively promotes the preservation of historic buildings and landscapes as a positive force for economic development and the retention of community character. The organization is supported entirely by grants, fundraising events and the support of our membership. In keeping with our mission, we work in partnership with national, state and local organizations and individuals across the Commonwealth to advance and understanding, appreciation and utilization of our historic built and natural landscapes. More information about Preservation Massachusetts may be found online at www.preservationmass.org

About the 1772 Foundation:

The 1772 Foundation was named in honor of its first restoration project, Liberty Hall in Union, NJ, which was built in 1772 and is the ancestral home of the Livingston and Kean families. The late Stewart B. Kean was the sole benefactor to The 1772 Foundation. The 1772 Foundation works to ensure the safe passage of our historic buildings and farmland to future generations. More information about The 1772 Foundation may be found at www.1772foundation.org.

####

An Important Letter from the Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association’s Executive Director Regarding Coronavirus/COVID-19 Cancellations

Nantucket, MA – Earlier this week, the Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association’s Executive Director, Dave Gagnon, released a statement regarding the Association’s plans in light of the Coronavirus/COVID-19 Pandemic (Pandemic).  “This Pandemic has impacted every one of us, both from a personal, as well as an economic perspective,” shared Gagnon. “Most of us know someone who has become seriously ill, is facing financial uncertainty, or has lost their job.  It is heartbreaking. This outbreak has forced the Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association to make a decision that would not seem possible even four short weeks ago. Based on our analysis, we determined that we will not be able to operate our facilities and offer programming at the level we have in past years, including our award-winning Discovery Camp program.  We have also cancelled our major summer fundraiser, the Stargazer Gala, scheduled for July 9,” stated Gagnon.  “We are working on an alternative event to the Gala and will keep our Members and Supporters informed as plans are solidified.  Our priority is to ensure the health and safety of our staff, interns, volunteers, visitors, and Island community.”

Moving Forward:

Over the last month, the MMA have found ways to virtually share content and experiences that people have come to know and look for from us, such as the Nantucket Science Festival which was held in a virtual form and which is still available online for people to participate in via at-home experiments and activities.  The MMA’s various social media platforms are being updated regularly with activities, content, and science challenges. The MMA’s educators have been working with Nantucket teachers to provide STEM curriculum ideas and hands-on, at-home activities. And although the Pandemic significantly limits the MMA’s summer offerings, the MMA remains optimistic that it will be able to offer limited programming later into the summer.  The MMA is working on ways to continue our popular Science Speaker Series every Wednesday night whether it be virtually or in person with social distance seating.  We hope to offer limited capacity tours at the Mitchell House, and are planning ways for visitors to continue to meet the animals, bird watch, and observe the night skies with us.

The MMA’s education programming will continue. The MMA’s research will continue. So please stay tuned.  While the MMA’s doors may be closed physically, the doors are still open virtually and the MMA is hoping to widen that entry later this summer.

This decision is very difficult and will result in a significant reduction in the MMA’s income but the MMA feels strongly that this is the right decision for the safety of its staff, interns, volunteers, visitors, and the Nantucket community.

The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association (MMA) is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages.

The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association is Hosting a Winter Naturalist Speaker Series

For Immediate Release
February 13, 2019
Contact: Lydia Gullicksen
508-228-9198
lgullicksen@mariamitchell.org

The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association is Hosting a Winter Naturalist Speaker Series

Nantucket, MA – Throughout the months of February and March, the Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association will be hosting speakers at its newly opened Research Center at 2 Vestal Street on select Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm. The series will focus on natural science and the natural world of Nantucket. Each hour long lecture will feature a local scientist or specialist and will be comprised of a talk, followed by a question and answer session.

The first lecturer in the Winter Speakers Series will be Julia Blyth on February 20th, the Biological Collections Manager at the Maria Mitchell Association. In what promises to be a unique experience, she will prepare a specimen of a bird that was found dead on Nantucket.  Once processed, the specimen will become a permanent part of the MMA’s biological collections. This demonstration will be projected on a big screen so the audience can see her work in real time and up close. Blyth prepares specimens, maintains the collections, and carries out field research with Barn Owls, Odonates (dragonflies and damselflies), and leafminers. The Maria Mitchell Association has been carefully preserving and curating biological specimens from Nantucket Island for over a century. Blyth has herself been adding to the MMA’s collections since 2011.

Up next will be Vincent Murphy on March 6th. Murphy is an ecologist who has worked with a large variety of species and habitats in Europe and North America. Murphy is now the Protected Species Technician for the Town of Nantucket. His talk entitled “Nantucket’s Protected Shore Birds” is about the protected species that breed around Nantucket each summer and the Town’s efforts to protect these species. The legal standing, conservation strategies, future management, and beautiful pictures of shorebirds will be featured in his talk.

On March 20, Nantucket’s very own Ginger Andrews, the MMA’s field ornithologist, will talk about bird rehabilitation Andrews the daughter of acclaimed ornithologist Edith Folger Andrews and ichthyologist J. Clinton Andrews, grew up in an ornithological world. With birds often in rehabilitation in the very house she lived in, she has a very unique perspective on birds and will share her stories and wisdom. Come hear her discussion on the needs, individual personalities, and conservation of bird species she has encountered, including the Barn owl.

Jack Dubinsky, the Maria Mitchell Association’s aquarist, will speak on March 27th about the Gelatinous Zooplankton of Nantucket. He will discuss the odd and puzzling world of the “gelata,” which are drifting marine animals that lack rigid structure and are often translucent. While jellyfish are the most famous of these creatures, there are gelatinous representatives from almost every animal phylum, including Arthropods, Molluscs and even Chordates! At the end, he will discuss species commonly seen around Nantucket.

Each lecture will be free for Members of the MMA and $5 for Non-Members.

The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association (MMA) is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages.

The Natural Science Museum is Open

For Immediate Release
January 7, 2018
Contact: Lydia Gullicksen
508-228-9198
lgullicksen@mariamitchell.org

 

Nantucket, MA – The Maria Mitchell Association is excited to announce that the Natural Science Museum will be open on Saturdays this winter from 10 am to 2pm.  While open, the Museum will run a feeding program, “Very Hungry Vertebrates,” in the mornings.

“We are delighted to offer year round families and winter visitors an opportunity to enjoy our Natural Science Museum with all our new hands-on exhibits and interesting animals” said Executive Director, David Gagnon.

The Natural Science Museum is located at 7 Milk Street and is a great way to pass the winter weekends with children of all ages. There are live animals, all found on Nantucket or its surrounding waters, including a bullfrog, jellyfish, turtles, snakes, and tropical fish. The tropical fish were found around Nantucket, but are not native species; they find their way up in summer trapped in warm core eddies. This winter the Natural Science Museum is hosting animals that have never been on display at the Maria Mitchell Association before, including the Ocyropsis crystalline, which is a type of comb jelly, and the bioluminescent crystal jellyfish. Marine exhibits will rotate throughout the winter and will feature new species in the future.

The Museum has interactive, educational exhibits where children can learn while playing, as well as biological collections, fossils, and a topography table where imaginary landscapes can come alive.  Before the Museum opens, the MMA will host “Very Hungry Vertebrates” from 9:00-9:40am. Participants will get to watch the Museum staff feed the snakes, fish, turtles, and tortoise and learn about the animals feeding ecology and how they are affected by seasons. The program is $5 for Members and $10 for Non-Members. Limited space is available so pre-registration online at mariamitchell.org is recommended. The Museum will be open from 10:00am – 2:00pm and will be free for Members, $5 for Non-Members. Membership purchased before the end of 2018 will be valid through 2019. Memberships can be purchased online at mariamitchell.org.

The Maria Mitchell Association is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a newly opened research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages. This year celebrates Mitchell’s 200th birthday with special lectures, events, classes, and exhibits all year-long.

 

For Immediate Release
October 29, 2018
Contact: Lydia Gullicksen
508-228-9198
lgullicksen@mariamitchell.org 

Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association Natural Science Museum Will be Open This Winter

Nantucket, MA – The Maria Mitchell Association is excited to announce that the Natural Science Museum will be open on Saturdays this winter from 10 am to 2pm.  While open, the Museum will run a feeding program, “Very Hungry Vertebrates,” in the mornings.

“We are delighted to offer year round families and winter visitors an opportunity to enjoy our Natural Science Museum with all our new hands-on exhibits and interesting animals” said Executive Director, David Gagnon.

The Natural Science Museum is located at 7 Milk Street and is a great way to pass the winter weekends with children of all ages. There are live animals, all found on Nantucket or its surrounding waters, including a bullfrog, jellyfish, turtles, snakes, and tropical fish. The tropical fish were found around Nantucket, but are not native species; they find their way up in summer trapped in warm core eddies. This winter the Natural Science Museum is hosting animals that have never been on display at the Maria Mitchell Association before, including the Ocyropsis crystalline, which is a type of comb jelly, and the bioluminescent crystal jellyfish. Marine exhibits will rotate throughout the winter and will feature new species in the future.

The Museum has interactive, educational exhibits where children can learn while playing, as well as biological collections, fossils, and a topography table where imaginary landscapes can come alive.  Before the Museum opens, the MMA will host “Very Hungry Vertebrates” from 9:00-9:40am. Participants will get to watch the Museum staff feed the snakes, fish, turtles, and tortoise and learn about the animals feeding ecology and how they are affected by seasons. The program is $5 for Members and $10 for Non-Members. Limited space is available so pre-registration online at mariamitchell.org is recommended. The Museum will be open from 10:00am – 2:00pm and will be free for Members, $5 for Non-Members. Membership purchased before the end of 2018 will be valid through 2019. Memberships can be purchased online at mariamitchell.org.

The Museum will be closed on November 24th.

The Maria Mitchell Association is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a newly opened research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages. This year celebrates Mitchell’s 200th birthday with special lectures, events, classes, and exhibits all year-long.

 

Maria Mitchell Women in Science Symposium Awards Maria Mitchell Women in Science Award to Four Recipients at Its First Meeting

NEWS
For Immediate Release
October 22, 2018
Contact: Jascin Leonardo Finger, MMA Deputy Director and Curator
jfinger@mariamitchell.org/508.228.2896

 Maria Mitchell Women in Science Symposium Awards Maria Mitchell Women in Science Award to Four Recipients at Its First Meeting

October 5th and 6th

MMA Caps Off Its First Highly Successful Symposium by Awarding Dava Sobel, Jill Tarter, Ph.D.; Meg Urry, Ph.D.; and Kate Kirby, Ph.D.; the Award

Nantucket,  MA – The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association awarded its Maria Mitchell Women in Science Award to four recipients – all women well-known in the STEM field in the United States – at its first Maria Mitchell Women in Science Symposium (MMWISS) held at the Babson Executive Conference Center in Babson Park, MA on Friday, October 5 and Saturday, October 6, 2018.  The award was announced at the closing of the MMWISS on October 6, 2018.

The Maria Mitchell Women in Science Award was originally founded in 1996 by the Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association and was designed to recognize an individual or group whose efforts have encouraged the advancement of girls and women in the natural and physical sciences, mathematics, engineering, computer science, and technology.  While there are many awards for scholastic and professional achievement in the various fields of science, the MMA believes it is equally important to recognize the people whose influence and support and make it possible for girls to become engaged in science and for women to reach the same high levels of accomplishment as their male peers. The first award was presented on October 4, 1997.  It took a hiatus after 2006.

The MMA believed then and still does today that a significant legacy left by Maria Mitchell was the vision and quality of education she gave to her students. The women she trained during her twenty‑three years at Vassar College went on to make an enduring contribution to the progress of women in all fields of science, education, and beyond. Teacher, mentor, role model  ̶  Maria Mitchell epitomized the full measure of what a woman scientist could be.  Were she with us today, her remarkable energies would surely be focused on academic and social reform, as well as career advancement opportunities for women in science.  The MMA hopes this award will be a bi-ennial event, along with the MMWISS.

Awardees are:

Dava Sobel – former New York Times science reporter and author of several books including, Longtitude, Galileo’s Daughter, The Planets, and a More Perfect Heaven, and recently The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard College Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars;

 Jill Tarter, Ph.D. – Chair Emeritus and former Director of the Center for Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI);

Meg Urry, Ph.D. – Israel Munson Professor of Physics and Astronomy and           Director of the Yale Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics;

Kate Kirby, Ph.D. – Executive Officer of the American Physical Society.

All four women were keynote speakers at the first MMWISS, along with panelists that included but was not limited to: Colette Salyk, Ph.D. of Vassar College; Dr. Ann LaCasce of Dana-Farber; Heather Goldstone, Ph.D. of WCAI; Shirley Malcom, Ph.D. of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Cecilia Aragon, Ph.D. of Washington State University; and Susana Widicus Weaver, Ph.D. of Emory University.

More information about the awardees and panelists can be found on the MMWISS website at mmwiss.org.

The MMWISS is meant to promote and support women and girls in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields.  The Symposium also honored the 200th birthday of Maria Mitchell, America’s first woman astronomer.

Jascin Finger, MMA Deputy Director and Symposium Coordinator stated, “This Symposium is designed to serve as a source of inspiration and support and to be a hands-on experience in which all attendees are actively participating and problem solving.  We were thrilled with the reception of this first-time, sold-out event with almost 150 attendees from college students to women in late-career – it was a fantastic group of people working together to problem solve and to hear from people of all walks of the STEM world.  And we were very excited to have our keynotes – and to surprise them with this award as we re-institute it.”

The Symposium is named after Maria Mitchell, America’s first woman astronomer.  2018 marks the 200th anniversary of Mitchell’s birth. Mitchell, who went on to teach Astronomy at Vassar College, promoted hands-on learning and encouraged women to study science.

The themes that the Maria Mitchell Women in Science Symposium address are persisting issues that hindered women in science in Maria Mitchell’s time and still affect them today. The Symposium also addresses where women are today, how to recruit women and girls into STEM, how to address the challenges that women still face in STEM, and how to broaden participation and leadership. Maria Mitchell believed in learning by doing and the Symposium will continue this philosophy by encouraging all attendees, female and male of all backgrounds and educations, to actively participate, problem-solve, and learn through a hands-on experience.

The two-day MMWISS was made possible thanks to the generous support of the National Science Foundation, American Philosophical Society, Massachusetts Biotechnology Council, Vassar College,  Mount Holyoke College, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, D. E. Shaw Company, Kenan Institute for Engineering, Technology & Science, Brainpickings.org, MA Space (NASA) Grant Consortium, American Astronomical Society, Schwartz Hannum PC,  Novartis, Tupancy-Harris Foundation, Linda Loring Nature Foundation, Nantucket Conservation Foundation, Sheila David, Ned & Merrilou Symes, the Red Sox Foundation, and Jascin Leonardo Finger and Eric Finger.

The event is organized by the Maria Mitchell Association, a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a newly opened research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages.

 

 

Press Release: Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association to Host Annual Aquarium Release Day

Press Release
For Immediate Release
August 28, 2018
Contact: Lydia Gullicksen
508-228-9198
lgullicksen@mariamitchell.org

 

Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association to Host Annual Aquarium Release Day 

Nantucket, MA – As the summer season comes to a close, many of the sea creatures that have spent the past few months at the Maria Mitchell Association (MMA) Aquarium will be returned to the ocean with much fanfare during the Aquarium “Release Day.” On September 1, 2018, from 10:00 am-1:00 pm, everyone is invited to the MMA Aquarium to help release fish, mollusks, invertebrates and crustaceans back into the harbor.

Release Day is an annual event that attracts hundreds of people. Throughout the summer season, the Aquarium hosts eighty different species of animals that serve as ambassadors of the ocean. Visitors learn about marine ecosystems, the biodiversity of Nantucket waters, animal interaction, invasive species, and preservation efforts. The Aquarium animals aid in these lessons throughout the summer but once the Aquarium closes, it is time for hundreds of them to return to the ocean. Volunteers armed with buckets will be instructed on the proper way to handle the animals and then will help directly by releasing them into the harbor. The animals include horseshoe crabs, pipefish, striped bass, dogfish, sea robins, and oyster toadfish and many more. Each child in attendance will get his or her own creature to release and will then be able to watch the larger species be returned to the harbor by interns and adult volunteers.

“At the start of each summer, our staff, interns, and visitors are excited about the sea creatures that are brought to the Aquarium and displayed.  But they are all equally excited to release these same animals back to their aquatic home in Nantucket Harbor,” says Dave Gagnon, Executive Director of the Maria Mitchell Association.  “It’s a great tradition and excellent teaching opportunity,” he adds.

Much of the aquatic life in the Aquarium was gathered at the beginning of the summer. Local businesses around the island including Glidden’s Island Seafood, Just Do It 2, Critter Cruises, and Sayle’s Seafood find and donate a variety of animals. The Aquarium is dedicated to maintaining the quality of life of all of its inhabitants so that when the time comes, they will be able to readjust to life in the ocean. For example, each day live shrimp are caught in the harbor to provide a more realistic feeding experience for fish that, like the trunk fish, are accustomed to hunting for food.

The Aquarium is located at 28 Washington Street and this event is free to the public. Donations are gladly accepted to support the MMA’s Aquarium. There is potential for attendees to get wet while participating, so participants should dress accordingly.

The Maria Mitchell Association is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a newly opened research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages. This year celebrates Mitchell’s 200th birthday with special lectures, events, classes, and exhibits all year-long, culminating in the Maria Mitchell Women in Science Symposium in October 2018 in Boston.

Press Release: Dr. Tim Lepore

Press Release 

For Immediate Release 

August 21, 2018 

Contact: Trinity Foreman 

508-228-9198, tforeman@mariamitchell.com 

 

For Immediate Release: Nantucket’s own Dr. Tim Lepore to speak at Maria Mitchell Association 

 

Nantucket, MA – The Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association (MMA) is hosting a lecture given by Dr. Tim Lepore on September 5th from 7:00-8:00 at 33 Washington Street. He will discuss “Review of Common and Not So Common Tick-Borne Diseases on Nantucket.”  Dr. Lepore’s talk will address the symptoms of tick-borne diseases, including the less common ones, preventative measures that can be taken, and treatments. These diseases include Lyme disease, Babesia, Anaplasmosis, and Borrelia Miyamotoi. It is possible to be infected with more than one of these at a time.  

Dr. Lepore has been treating members of the Nantucket community for the past 35 years and is currently a resident doctor and surgeon at the Nantucket Cottage Hospital. He is an advocate for the awareness of tick-borne diseases on Nantucket, which is especially important in a community that has one of the highest incidence rates in the country. Dr. Lepore is considered to be one of the leading tick borne disease experts in the country and has had articles published alongside researchers from Harvard Public School of Health, Tufts University School of Medicine, and the Yale School of Public Health.  

 

The Maria Mitchell Association will be hosting a new speaker on Wednesday evenings from 7:00-8:00 as part of our summer Science-Speaker Series which will feature astronomers, authors, environmentalists, biologists, professors, and doctors. The MMA Speaker Series is sponsored by the Bank of America, Cisco Brewers, and Don Allen Ford.  For a full schedule and description of each speaker please visit our website at mariamitchell.org. The event is free for MMA members and $10 for non-members.  

The Maria Mitchell Association is a private non-profit organization. Founded in 1902, the MMA works to preserve the legacy of Nantucket native astronomer, naturalist, librarian, and educator, Maria Mitchell. The Maria Mitchell Association operates two observatories, a natural science museum, an aquarium, a newly opened research center, and preserves the historic birthplace of Maria Mitchell. A wide variety of science and history-related programming is offered throughout the year for people of all ages. This year celebrates Mitchell’s 200th birthday with special lectures, events, classes, and exhibits all year-long, culminating in the Maria Mitchell Women in Science Symposium in October 2018 in Boston.