The Outdoor Insider

Maine Outdoor School's Quarterly E-Newsletter

Issue #8
October 2018

Maine Outdoor School exists because we believe that personal and community resilience in rural Maine is essential to the resilience of society as a whole. We believe that resilient, flourishing communities are rooted in the careful study of our history and natural surroundings by lifelong learners of all ages, backgrounds, and occupations.

Milbridge students creating their own field guides during “Thursday Forays”

Milbridge students creating their own field guides during “Thursday Forays”

A hand-tied fly by Joe Horn

A hand-tied fly by Joe Horn

Fly-tying workshop participants’ hand-tied flies

Fly-tying workshop participants’ hand-tied flies


Co-Founders' Note:

As summer slumped into fall, nights cooled off, and leaves transitioned from green to a whole array of golds, oranges, and reds in preparation for their winter dormancy. MOS, however, has been anything but dormant. We have been charging into this new school year with programs across the whole Downeast region for learners of all ages: from Pre-K  straight through to our elders. As always, we could not do this good work without the intrepid partners that make so much of this work possible. See the “Tracks” section below and click on the links to read about our latest programs.

We also want to convey two particular thank-you’s from this last quarter. First, thanks to those of you who filled out our survey to give us feedback about this very e-newsletter. We heard that the majority of you liked it as is, so we haven’t changed much! However, we will be making our e-newsletters available on our website soon, per your request. Second, thanks to reporter Aislinn Sarnacki of the Bangor Daily News for meeting with us and writing an amazing article about Maine Outdoor School, which is available online here and was in print on 10/5/18. That article represented our first official press and we think she did a great job!

Stay warm and get outside during this stunning season,

~Hazel and Joe



Community Commendations:

This month’s Community Commendation goes out to all the folks at at the Cobscook Community Learning Center’s Transforming Rural Experience in Education (TREE)program. These educational visionaries have worked tirelessly to increase opportunities for students in rural Maine and we feel lucky that they have invited MOS to take part in their work through our weekly programs at Jonesport and Milbridge Elementary Schools. Learn more about TREE here.

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Walking out to my garden the other morning, I found sitting under a crabapple tree the most impressively voluminous pile of bear scat I think I have ever seen. So I got a bit closer and saw that the hefty heap was loaded with apple skins and seeds! So I looked around for the bounty of apples that once graced the grassy patch under the tree and instead found yet another tremendous pile of scat even bigger than the last! 

In the depths of this fall ripeness you may consider being like the bear and making the most of our autumnal bounty. Go pick some apples or cranberries, gather mushrooms, can the very last of your garden’s spoils, or even finish stacking this year’s firewood.


Resilience Tip: 
“Just five minutes of green [outdoor] exercise results in improvements in self-esteem and mood.” 
(Read more about the benefits of heading outside in this Harvard Medical School article.)


What's Upstream: 

For this next quarter, we will continue providing weekly outdoor programs at Jonesport and Milbridge Elementary Schools in collaboration with TREE. Jonesport Pre-K and Kindergartners will experience one hour of outdoor school per week for five weeks starting in late October, then the 8th-graders will experience that same schedule. Milbridge 3rd and 5th-graders will continue to experience an hour per week each through our “Thursday Forays.” 

Additionally, we will continue to offer free fly-tying workshops across Hancock and Washington CountiesVisit our Events page or our Facebook page to learn about the next free workshop near you. Are you interested in having a fly-tying workshop at your school, community center, or local business? Please reach out to Joe at to learn more.

Does all this exciting outdoor programming get you itching to experience it yourself? We still have some space on the calendar for more programs! Our programs are fully customizable and suit learners of any age. We can even help you write grants to help you fund our programs. Visit our website or contact us to learn more.

To stay in touch with us and receive more frequent updates, follow us on social media (links below) and visit    our News page   .

To stay in touch with us and receive more frequent updates, follow us on social media (links below) and visit our News page.