In the News

Click the headlines or scroll down to browse a selection of local and national news articles featuring the Museum & Theatre.

2016
Portland Press Herald: Kids celebrate new year early at Children’s Museum in Portland
WCSH 6: Bug Fest lets kids test the taste of insects
WGME 13: Children get a chance to sample bugs
WCSH 6: Our Production of Chris Van Dusen's Circus Ship featured on 207
WMTW 8: Mainers Celebrate Lunar New Year

2015
The Forecaster: Children's Museum opens 'hospital' in Portland
Portland Press Herald: the Children's Museum & Theatre celebrates Halloween
Portland Phoenix: 'Children’s Rendition of Dahl Classic Performed with Exuberance'
WCSH 6: the Children's Museum & Theatre's Big Draw Events Featured on 207
Maine Today Media: Children's Museum & Theatre Celebrates the Big Draw
WCSH 6: Down to the Sea with Mr. Magee at the Children's Museum & Theatre
WCSH 6: March of Dimes holds NICU Reunion
Portland Press Herald: Easter Egg Hunt at the Children's Museum & Theatre

2014
WMTW 8: Children's Museum & Theatre Holds Annual Holiday Celebration
Backstage Lists Our Theatre as One of the '12 Great Children's Theaters Across the U.S.'!
Bangor Daily News: Theatre Director Inspired by Story of Bullied Elephant
WMTW8: Children's Museum & Theatre holds NICU reunion

2013
WMTW8: Children's museum holds Hanukkah party
WCSH6: Kids turn cardboard into playscape
WCSH6: Pop-up playscape encourages kids to get creative
The Forecaster: 'Playscapes' to pop up at Portland's Kennedy Park, Eastern Promenade
Maine Sunday Telegram: Society Notebook: Using imagination for kids
Portland Press Herald: School's out: Find fun with your kids
Good Day Maine: Country Mouse and the Missing Lunch Mystery
Good Day Maine: Peter Pan

2012
Hand to Hand: Promising Practice Award: Cultural Policies
Saint Joseph's College Magazine: Service Learning, where college and community meet
The Current: South Portland students inspire museum project
The Forecaster: South Portland students ask for penguins, get Portland art exhibit
Portland Press Herald: Portland children's museum wants to grow - and maybe move
Portland Phoenix: Young actors take to the stage in Wiley and the Hairy Man
Forbes: 12 Best Children's Museums in the US

2011
Dr. Lisa Radio Hour & Podcast: Joy
WCSH6: New U.S. Citizens Celebrated in Portland
WCSH6's 207: Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine
Portland Press Herald: Child's Play Part of Grown-Up's Job at Children's Museum of Maine
WCSH6's 207: James and the Giant Peach at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine
Scarborough Leader: Cape, Scarborough, South Portland Actors among 'Peach' Cast
MPBN: Bullying in Schools Gets Renewed Attention

2010
Maine Women: Emerging Leaders: The Theater Director
Portland Press Herald: Caring for Community
Boston Globe: Memory makers: Old fun times become the next generation's new fun times
New York Times: The Peripatetic Family
Portland Phoenix: Seeing is Believing
Portland Press Herald: Nonprofit mergers one way for small groups to make it

2009
Education World: Children's Museums "Exhibit" Educational Outreach
WCSH6: Children's Museums Work To Stay Germ-Free
Boston Globe: At Maine museum, playtime is the rule
Portland Press Herald: Portland has a new place to play!

2008
Boston Globe: Camera Obscuras fascinate new generations
Hand to Hand: Zero tolerance lead policy


Kids celebrate new year early at Children’s Museum in Portland
12.31.2016
Portland Press Herald

Portland Press Herald's Beth Quimby joined us for our New Year's at Noon celebration, and got in some good conversations about the new year and resolutions. Click here to read the article at the Portland Press Herald!
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"Bug Fest lets kids test the taste of insects"
07.23.2016
WCSH6

WCSH 6: Katie Bavoso of WCSH 6 stopped by to check out our Bug Fest and Pestaurant, sponsored by Ehrlich Pest Control. Kids (and adults!) got a chance to eat bugs, see a bug show, and talk to bug experts!
Click here to read the article and watch the full video at WCSH 6!
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"Children get a chance to sample bugs"
07.23.2016
WGME 13

WGME 13: The WGME 13 team stopped by to check out our Bug Fest, sponsored by Ehrlich Pest Control. Kids (and adults!) got a chance to eat bugs, see a bug show, and talk to bug experts!
Click here to see the full article at WGME 13!
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"The Circus Ship" - Chris Van Dusen & Rebecca Short
04.14.2016
WCSH6: 207

207: Chris Van Dusen and our own Reba Short went on 207 to talk about our fabulous adaptation of The Circus Ship to a stage production! Click here to see the full video at 207's website!
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WMTW 8: Mainers Celebrate Lunar New Year
02.07.2016
WMTW 8

WMTW 8 stopped by our Korean Lunar New Year Celebration, which coincided with the opening of the Korean Lunar New Year exhibit in our Celebration Station. Click here to watch the full video at WMTW!
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The Forecaster: Children's Museum opens 'hospital' in Portland
12.01.2015
The Forecaster

With the support of the Barbara Bush Children's Hospital at Maine Medical Center, we opened our newest exhibit, the Be Well Center, on November 20th! The Forecaster's David Harry stopped by to get a feel for what it's like.
Click here to read the full article at the Forecaster!
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Portland Press Herald: the Children's Museum & Theatre celebrates Halloween
10.31.2015
Portland Press Herald

The Portland Press Herald stopped by our Halloween celebration, including our costumed parade of treats! They got some great photos and spoke to staff member Molly.

Click here to read the full article at the Portland Press Herald.


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Portland Phoenix: Portland Phoenix: 'Children’s Rendition of Dahl Classic Performed with Exuberance
10.28.2015
Portland Phoenix

The Portland Phoenix's Megan Grumbling reviews the Children's Museum & Theatre's production of Roald Dahl's The Witches, calling it a 'fantastic production'!

Click here to read the full review!


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WCSH 6: the Children's Museum & Theatre's Big Draw Events Featured on 207
10.22.2015
WCSH 6

Throughout the month of October, the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine is participating in the Big Draw, an international drawing celebration! Staff members Brittany and Kyle went over to WCSH 6's 207 to talk about our events, our artists in residence, and even play a little drawing game with the hosts.

Click to watch the full 207 segment.


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Maine Today Media: Children's Museum & Theatre Celebrates the Big Draw
10.07.2015
Maine Today Media

Throughout the month of October, the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine is participating in the Big Draw, an international drawing celebration! We have lots of events throughout the month, including a visit by Mr. van Dusen, and collaborations between visitors and three professional artists.

Click to read the full Maine Today Media article.


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WCSH 6: Down to the Sea with Mr. Magee at the Children's Museum & Theatre
07.07.2015
WCSH 6

The Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine's new exhibit, Down to the Sea with Mr. Magee, is now open in the backyard! 207 did an interview with Mr. van Dusen, creator of Mr. Magee, and Chris Sullivan, director of exhibits here at the museum & theatre.

Click to watch the full WCSH 6 segment.


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WCSH 6: March of Dimes holds NICU Reunion
04.10.2015
WCSH 6

The March of Dimes held their annual NICU reunion at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine! Families and children who have spent time in the NICU at Maine Medical Center were reunited with the nurses who cared for them.

Click to view the full WCSH 6 story.


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Portland Press Herald: Easter Egg Hunt at the Children's Museum & Theatre
04.05.2015
Portland Press Herald

We held our annual easter egg hunt at the museum & theatre!

Click to read the full Portland Press Herald article.


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WMTW 8: Children's Museum & Theatre Holds Annual Holiday Celebration
12.01.2014
WMTW 8

It's holiday season at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine! We held our annual tree-lighting ceremony for visitors to the museum & theatre.

Click to watch the full WMTW 8 segment.


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Backstage: Lists Our Theatre as One of the '12 Great Children's Theaters Across the U.S.'!
11.25.2014
backstage

KC Wright of Backstage lists the Children's Theatre of Maine as one of the 12 best children's theaters in the U.S.

Click here to read the full list at the Backstage website.
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Bangor Daily News: Theatre Director Inspired by Story of Bullied Elephant
07.14.2014
WMTW 8

Theatre Director Reba Short was inspired by the story of Rosie, who was bullied by the other elephants.

Click to read the full story at Bangor Daily News.


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Children's Museum & Theatre holds NICU reunion
03.14.2014
WMTW 8

In March, we held our annual reunion for families whose children were in the NICU unit at Maine Medical Center, and the nurses who cared for them.

Click to watch the full WMTW 8 segment.


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Children's museum holds Hanukkah party
12.02.2013
WMTW 8

We're right in the middle of Hanukkah and today, children and their families were invited to celebrate the Jewish culture at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine. Kids enjoyed Hanukkah stories, crafts, games and snacks.

Click to watch the full WMTW 8 segment.


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Kids turn cardboard into playscape
08.31.2013
WCSH 6

Kids were creating with little more than cardboard on the Eastern Promenade Saturday.

The Children's Museum and Theater of Maine held a Pop-Up Playscape event at the waterfront park in Portland. EcoMaine provided lots of recycled materials, and kids used their imaginations to create all kinds of structures from castles, to drive-thru bakeries, and even costumes. The activity is designed to teach kids how to think creatively and solve problems. But they just see it as a fun challenge.

Click to watch the full WCSH 6 segment.


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Pop-up playscape encourages kids to get creative
07.23.2013
WCSH 6

The Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine took advantage of Monday's sun to get some of Portland's kids outside and using their minds.

The kids made trains, airplanes, and houses. Above all, they learned valuable skills - like teamwork.

Click to watch the full WCSH 6 segment.


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'Playscapes' to pop up at Portland's Kennedy Park, Eastern Promenades
07.16.2013
The Forecaster

Kids this summer will have the opportunity to build spaceships, race cars, fortresses and anything else they can dream up, all for free.

The only catch is that they'll have make it all from scrap.

The Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine will host two park takeovers, where kids will be encouraged to design, build and play in their own "ultimate fort-meets-sculpture-meets-homemade-playground," all made from recycled materials.

Click for the full Forecaster article.


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Maine Sunday Telegram: Society Notebook: Using imagination for kids
05.12.2013
Maine Sunday Telegram

Volunteer solicitors for the benefit auction for the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine cast a wide net and brought in quite a haul -- 500 donations, including a European getaway.

"I think every business in this area wants to support nonprofits," said Suzanne Olson, the museum's executive director. "It's just about finding the right match."

Click for the full Maine Sunday Telegram article.


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School's out: Find fun with your kids
04.11.2013
Portland Press Herald

School's out for...

Only a week, never you mind what Alice Cooper says.

But school vacation can seem a lot longer if you have a house full of bored children chanting, "We've got nothing to do, we've got nothing to do."

Luckily, Greater Portland seems to gear up for school vacation weeks, so there's usually a lot of innovative and thought-provoking stuff for families to do.

Click for the full Press Herald article.


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Good Day Maine: Country Mouse and the Missing Lunch Mystery
04.11.2013
Good Day Maine

Cast members perform a scene from Country Mouse and the Missing Lunch Mystery, a lighthearted whodunit created just for young audiences.

Click to watch the full segment on Good Day Maine.


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Good Day Maine: Peter Pan
02.22.2013
Good Day Maine

Cast members bring to life a scene from Peter Pan, a version of J.M. Barrie's classic written especially for the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine stage.

Click to watch the full segment on Good Day Maine.


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Promising Practice Award: Cultural Policies
Winter 2012
By: Lucy Bangor, Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine
Hand to Hand: Quarterly Journal of the Association of Children's Museums

Play is essential to children's social and emotional development. Among immigrant children, who face linguistic and cultural challenges that their American-born peers do not, the open-ended, exploratory play found in children's museums may be particularly helpful in navigating their new environment.

Click here to read the full article on page 15 of the Winter 2012 Issue of Hand to Hand
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Service Learning, where college and community meet
Fall 2012
Saint Joseph's College Magazine

Service learning gives students a chance to apply what they've learned to real-world settings, making them more active participants in their education. In the Mercy spirit of service, the students share their skills at a community or non-profit organization, but as they're giving to others, they're getting something tangible back....

For instance, fine arts major YuPing Hu helped design the set for the Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine's production of "Sleeping Beauty," which ran from October 19th to October 28th. Hu enjoys service learning because, she says, "I meet many different people and learn to step outside of my own box. I might be contributing to the community through my art, but in return, the community gives back compliments and suggestions that allow me to grow as an artist."

Click for the full Saint Joseph's College Magazine article.


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South Portland students inspire museum project
10.24.2012
The Current

If you've ever seen a nature program about penguins and watched the flightless waterfowl as they appear to jump for the sky, only to crash into the frigid ocean below, you know from the moment they touch water and dart off after a silvery meal how there can be beauty and grace even when falling short of a lofty goal.

On Monday, third-grade students from South Portland's Skillin Elementary School got a little taste of what that feeling is like firsthand, with a visit to the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine, on Free Street in Portland.

Click for the full Current article.


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South Portland students ask for penguins, get Portland art exhibit
10.24.2012
The Forecaster

Chris Sullivan, exhibits director at the Maine Children's Museum and Theatre, said he had never seen so many letters requesting a new exhibit until he started receiving letters from students at South Portland's Waldo T. Skillin Elementary School about a habitat for live penguins at the museum.

"We view ourselves as an organization serving the community," Sullivan said. "To have the students express themselves was unusual and inspirational."

Click for the full Forecaster article.


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Portland children's museum wants to grow - and maybe move
04.04.2012
Portland Press Herald

The Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine is "bursting at the seams" in its building on Free Street and may move if it can find a suitable site and raise money for construction, says the president of the organization's board.

Barbee Gilman said relocation is just one option being considered, although a commercial real estate broker sent out a "request for information" on Tuesday to landowners and other brokers in the city, inquiring about potential sites.

Click for the full Portland Press Herald article.


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Young actors take to the stage in Wiley and the Hairy Man
02.22.2012
Portland Phoenix

Deep in the Appalachian swamp, young Wiley (Luke Stickney, winningly) lives among tree toads, alligators, and plenty of magical spirits. But to Wiley, the scariest thing out there in the swamp, the thing that keeps him shaking under his covers, is a man. It's the Hairy Man, feared by everybody in the area, and to stand up to him, Wiley is going to have to find a courage he never knew he had, in Wiley and the Hairy Man.

Click for the full Portland Phoenix article.


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12 Best Children's Museums in the US
01.30.2012
Forbes

When families travel, one of the hardest challenges facing parents is keeping their kids entertained and finding appropriate attractions for a variety of ages. For these reasons, a good museum can be a real lifesaver, and in some cases, the very best can even be the cornerstone of an entire vacation.

A truly hands-on museum, this smaller but first rate facility has wide array of exhibits melding general themes like a fire station and veterinary hospital with Maine specialties like a working climb-aboard lobster boat, wilderness ranger station, and the sponsored LL Bean Discovery Woods.

Click for the full Forbes article.


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Dr. Lisa Radio Hour: Joy
12.18.2011
Dr. Lisa Radio Hour & Podcast

Joy is more than just happiness for happiness' sake. It is about facing challenges and feeling gratitude. It is about reveling in the uncertainty that is living. It is also about laughing, and sharing the laughter of children.

This very special show will put a smile on your face and bring joy to your heart!

Guests include: Mike LePage of ReMax Heritage; Katie West of the Levity Institute; and Lucy Bangor of the Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine.

Click to listen to the Dr. Lisa Radio Hour.


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New U.S. Citizens Celebrated in Portland
12.07.2011
WCSH6

34 people in Maine were recognized Wednesday as being official citizens of the United States. They did not have go through the testing that most people who want to become U.S. citizens have to go through. That's because the 34 children derived their U.S. citizenship through their parents who have already gone through the naturalization process.

Click to see the clip from the WCSH6 evening news.


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Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine
09.20.2011
WCSH6

Kathleen Shannon interviews actress Emma Cooper and Theatre Artistic Director Reba Short.

Click to see the clip from WCSH6's 207.


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Child's Play Part of Grown-Up's Job at Children's Museum of Maine
03.14.2011
Portland Press Herald

Ray Routhier profiles Educator Louisa Donelson for his Maine at Work series:

Louisa Donelson looked at her watch and saw that it was 10:15 a.m. She had just 15 minutes before leading a program for toddlers and preschoolers titled "Sound Exploration."

"I've got a few minutes so I was going to start doing some measurement for this grant proposal," said Donelson, 27, an educator at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine. "I've got these cutouts of dolphins and porpoises to use."

Click for the full Portland Press Herald article.


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James and the Giant Peach at the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine
02.18.2011
WCSH6

Kathleen Shannon interviews Alex Witkowski, who plays the title role in James and the Giant Peach, along with Reba Short, Theatre Artistic Director.

Click for to see the clip from WCSH 6's 207.


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Cape, Scarborough, South Portland Actors among 'Peach' Cast
02.16.2011
Scarborough Leader

For children, the opportunity to act in a play or musical can be transformative.

"They realize if they can do this, they can do anything," said Reba Short, the theater arts director at The Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine. "They can do anything they want to do and be anything they want to be."

Click for the full Scarborough Leader article.


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Bullying in Schools Gets Renewed Attention
02.04.2011
MPBN Radio

Renewed efforts are underway at a number of levels in Maine to deal with the problem of bullying in schools. At the State House, several lawmakers are working on new legislation to prevent children being harassed by their peers. While at the grassroots level, a pioneering project has just been launched in Maine which combines children's theater with a nationwide research project.

Click to listed to the original MPBN radio story; click here for an extended interview.


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Emerging Leaders: The Theater Director
10.17.2010
Maine Women

Theatre Artistic Director Reba Short is profiled as one of Maine's emerging leaders:

At a young age, Reba Short discovered that theater gave her a spark of excitement like nothing else could. Today, as the theater director for the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine, she's helping kids find their own passion - whether it be theater, arts, science or math.

Click for the full article from Maine Women Magazine.


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Caring for Community
05.21.2010
Portland Press Herald

Two dozen volunteers descended on the Children's Museum and Theater of Maine on Thursday. They went to work weeding flower beds, freshening the paint on a scaled-down pirate ship, applying finish to picnic tables and dismantling the aging Taj Mahal clubhouse.

The volunteers were among more than 1,000 people from various companies and organizations who turned out for the United Way of Greater Portland's 18th annual Day of Caring.

Click for the full Portland Press Herald article.


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Memory makers: Old fun times become the next generation's new fun times
04.11.2010
Boston Globe

Childhood's rites of passage change with the seasons in New England, but not with the years.

It wouldn't be Maine without lobster boats. And the Children's Museum has a pint-sized vessel perfect for young visitors. The replica lobster boat allows kids to play captain and haul in traps. "We feel each children's museum in the US should represent its home place and speak to the community in which it exists," said Suzanne Olson, executive director.

Click for the full Boston Globe article.


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The Peripatetic Family
04.04.2010
New York Times

Not that you'd ever mistake Portland for Brooklyn, not with that gorgeous, rugged scenery, but the Maine town's population of scruffy artists, young families, and ardent locavores seems awfully familiar.

After taking in downtown's must-stops,there's a great children's museum next door to the Portland Museum of Art.

Click for the full New York Times article.


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Seeing is Believing: The Emperor visits the Children's Theatre
03.03.2010
Portland Phoenix

Emperor Fredrick has a wardrobe problem: The "commonness" of his fabrics makes Empress Sophie cringe, and his people turn away from his speeches with disappointment and disdain for his duds. He is, in brief, "in dire need of an image makeover."

Click for the full Portland Phoenix article.


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Nonprofit mergers one way for small groups to make it
01.05.2010
Portland Press Herald

Here's the challenge facing the people who run small not-for-profit agencies: Find a new way to stay alive or die.

This is one model for how small groups can make it through this recession and come out of it better organized for the future. Last year's merger of the Children's Museum of Maine and the Children's Theatre is another.

Click for the full Portland Press Herald article.


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Children's Museums "Exhibit" Educational Outreach
12.01.2009
Education World

In the most popular outreach program of the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine, students come face-to-face with a 45-foot, life-size replica of a humpback whale -- and even take a walk inside it.

Click for the full Education World article.


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Children's Museums Work To Stay Germ-Free
11.06.2009
WCSH6

Children's museums are a place where kids -- and their parents -- are encouraged to touch anything and everything. But as they do that, they could be spreading germs.

At the Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine in Portland, Lucy Bangor said in addition to having a cleaning crew come in each night, they put their hard props in the dishwasher every night and put their soft props, like stuffed animals, in the washing machine every night.

Click for the full WCSH 6 article.


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At Maine museum, playtime is the rule
09.27.2009
Boston Globe

Do you want to slide down the fire pole? Or milk the cow? Can I take your picture on the boat, holding the lobster?

At the interactive Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine, where tots to teens are not only encouraged, but expected to touch everything, such questions are common.

The museum, located on Free Street in the arts district of this compact city of just over 64,000, puts little ones front and center. Here it's all about playing and exploring.

Click for the full Boston Globe article.


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Portland has a new place to Play!
08.21.2009
Portland Press Herald

Huge slabs of granite dominate the knoll; you can jump from one to the next, scrambling to the top.

Close your eyes, and you might be hiking the Cathedral Trail in Baxter State Park or jumping across the rocks at Mackworth Island. Upright logs and granite columns sunk into the ground could be towering pines or dockside pylons.

For the kids who use the new Deering Oaks playground, the adventures will be limited only by imagination.

Click for the full Portland Press Herald article.


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Camera obscuras fascinate new generations
07.20.2008
Boston Globe

PORTLAND, Maine - What if you could stand in a windowless room yet see the surrounding outdoors. Could you observe wildlife or people going about their business, without them knowing you are there? It's possible with an optical instrument called a camera obscura.

Click here to read the full article in the Boston Globe.
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Zero Tolerance: Detecting Lead in a Children's Museum
04.2008
By: Suzanne Olson and Suzanne Eder, Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine
Hand to Hand: Quarterly Journal of ACM (Spring 2008) Children's Museums: Clean and Safe Places to Play

The Children's Museum of Maine Board of Directors and staff believe that the Museum has the responsibility and opportunity to serve as a thought leader in early childhood learning in our community and beyond. When news of toy recalls surfaced in the fall of 2007, we began a serious discussion about how we as an institution focused on the children should respond to this concern. We asked ourselves if the products we make available to young children in our exhibits, as well as our store merchandise, were free of lead. This question and the pursuit of its answer have taken us on a journey far more complex and emotional than we ever imagined...

Click here to read the full article on page two of the Spring 2008 Issue of Hand to Hand
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