Maine Outdoor Learning Programs

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Governor Mills’ Maine Outdoor Learning Initiative is a statewide effort to increase student access to hands-on outdoor learning experiences and career exploration.

These 2024 programs are available to middle and high school students across the state for free. They offer outdoor opportunities for students to learn about and interact with nature through hands-on learning adventures. Many initiatives also allow students to explore outdoor and nature-based careers.

Search the table to find a free Outdoor Learning Program in your county or across the state. Click the organization’s name to visit their website for program details!*

Organization Description County Type Age  Frequency Dates

Appalachian Mountain Club


Penobscot Paddlers: A five day paddling and camping trip on the Upper West Branch of the Penobscot.


Summer Overnight Program

9th - 12th

One One-Week Paddling Trip

6/24 - 28

Appalachian Mountain Club

Teen Wilderness: A three-day lodge-based program focused on positive outdoor experiences


Summer Overnight Program

9th - 12th

One Three-Day Trip


Appalachian Mountain Club

100-Mile Wilderness: A two-week-long backpacking trip on the last 100 miles of the Appalachian Trail


Summer Overnight Program

9th - 12th

One Two-Week  Trip


Baxter Academy

The Program is divided into four modules, with a core structure of an established theme, fluency (both English and Scientific), practical skills, and training for long-term success in STEM/STEAM fields. 

Every module includes exploration by bike, foot, or paddle board (weather dependent), journaling, and group reflection and concludes with a project and graduation ceremony where parents are welcome. 


Summer Day Program

9th - 12th

Four Modules Across Four Weeks


Belfast Area High School

Backwoods Summer Program: A transition program for rising 9th graders who have been deemed "at risk" for on-time graduation from Belfast Area High School. The summer program will be 5 weeks long and include field trips and gardening work that will result in student stipends and elective credit.


Summer Day Program 9th

Four Days a Week for Six Weeks

6/18 – 8/1

Belfast Area High School

Belfast Area High School (BAHS) will bring students together for four days a week for five weeks to work together with key BAHS staff to help set them up for a successful transition to high school. They will participate in a week at hurricane island center for leadership, will have multiple fieldtrips a week, and will receive a stipend and academic credit for completing the program.

Waldo Summer Day Program 9th

Five Weeks, Four Days a Week

6/17 – 7/18

Biddeford, Saco, and Dayton School Departments

Saco Middle School: This program offers Saco Middle School students a three-day, two-night immersive outdoor experience exploring ecosystems through hands-on science lessons.


After School Program


Wednesday’s After School

Fourth School Quarter

Biddeford, Saco, and Dayton School Departments

Biddeford: This program proposes an outdoor leadership academy, bike shop curriculum, and field trips for at-risk youth in Biddeford.


After School Program


One Weekly Program from April to the End of the School Year

Fourth School Quarter

Biddeford, Saco, and Dayton School Departments

New Mainer and Unhoused Youth: This program aims to connect New Mainers and homeless youth to Maine's natural beauty through a summer program involving kayaking, hiking, and ocean exploration activities.

York Summer Day and Overnight Program 10th-12th

One Day a Week for Eight Weeks with one Overnight Trip

6/12 – 8/20

Camden Rockport Middle School

Students will participate in daily outdoor activities, including rock climbing, canoeing, paddle boarding, hiking, and sea kayaking. Each day begins with some Social-Emotional Learning and ends with a reflection.


Summer day Program


Two Two Week Sessions 


Carrabec High School Outdoor Skills and Leadership Club

CHS Outdoor Skills and Leadership club meets each school day to explore topics and learn skills in the Maine outdoors: hiking, fly fishing, camping, paddling, skiing, snowshoeing, ice fishing, wilderness first aid, wilderness survival skills, etc. The club tries to get off campus for a day or overnight adventure once a month. 


School Day and After School Program


Weekly with Extended Off-Campus Trips


School Day

Cheverus High School 

The goal of Cheverus's program is to spark awe and wonder in the natural world. Teachers will work together across curriculums to study island ecology and natural history, communicating science via art, and sustainability, among other topics. A "whole student" approach will be employed: research will be balanced with reflection. A typical day on an outdoor immersion would include the four essential elements: care, creation, curiosity, and content. After the "work" comes "play," whether it be forest swimming, a hike looking at geological formations, or nature journaling on a beach. The day often ends with a campfire, listening to owls calling, and, for many students, seeing the Milky Way for the first time. 


After School and Summer Overnight Programs


Two One-Week Sessions

One During the School Year

One Over the Summer

5/21-24 (Summer Date TBD)

Chewonki Foundation

 Maine Appalachian Trail Backpacking Trip: For those who want to explore the wilds of Maine on their feet, living close to nature and removed from everyday life, a trek on the Maine AT promises an adventure. The Trip begins in the territory known as the 100-Mile Wilderness and heads northbound to Baxter State Park. The adventure ends with a challenging hike up Mount Katahdin (Wabanaki for “the greatest mountain”), which marks the northern terminus of the AT. Students will average 5-12 miles per day, depending upon terrain. Along the way, they will enjoy and learn about the natural history and ecology of the AT. There is a great chance of seeing moose, bear, beaver, eagles, deer, and other wildlife.

*All equipment, meal, and transportation costs for these programs are covered.

Lincoln, Piscataquis

Summer Overnight


Three Two-Week Tips

6/23 – 8/10

Chewonki Foundation

Maine Northwoods Canoe Trip: This adventure begins in the middle of the North Maine Woods on Allagash Lake and works its way north on the Allagash River through lakes, rapids, and trails that have been traveled for countless years. The group will paddle the length of the Allagash River to where it connects with the St John River near the Canadian Border. Highlights include paddling Chase Rapids, incredible campsites, exploring the old tramway, and sunsets on the many lakes of the waterway.

*All equipment, meal, and transportation costs for these programs are covered.

Lincoln, Piscataquis

Summer Overnight



Three Two-Week Programs

6/23 - 8/10

Chewonki Foundation

Maine Coast Kayaking Trip: This trip begins in the protected waters of Hockomock Bay surrounding Chewonki Neck in Wiscasset Maine, where participants spend the first few days learning expeditionary sea kayaking skills. As student’s skills and confidence increase, they will travel up the coast toward the spruce-covered islands of Penobscot Bay. Each night, students will camp in tents at a different island along their route up the Maine coast, taking note of the local ecology as they go. After plenty of paddling, the trip ends up in the breathtaking islands of Stonington, where lobster boats and sandy beaches fill the 70+ island archipelago.

*All equipment, meal, and transportation costs for these programs are covered.

Lincoln, Penobscot

Summer Overnight
8th-10th Three Two-Week Programs 6/23 - 8/10

Cobscook Institute

Outdoor Skills Camp: Learn and practice basic skills to stay safe and have fun in the woods and on the water. Explore Cobscook Institute’s beautiful campus as well as the bounty of nature preserves along Cobscook Bay and The Bold Coast as students learn to paddle a canoe with a partner, build fires and shelters, travel lightly on the land by learning and practicing Leave No Trace, and learn camping skills as you prepare for an overnight adventure.

Washington Summer Day and Overnight 
6th-8th One One-Week Program 6/24-28
Cobscook Institute Canoe Camp: On this 6-day, 5-night canoe trip, participants will explore the Downeast Lakes and camp at some of the most scenic, remote campsites in eastern Maine. Each day, the group will paddle on lakes and streams in traditional Passamaquoddy territory, learn canoe skills, practice wilderness camping skills, and enjoy each other's company. Food will be cooked on an open fire. Participants will sleep in tents and have a chance to swim, fish, journal, and play games in their free time. No camping or canoeing skills are needed, just a willingness to embrace new experiences in wild places and a desire to learn about traditional travel routes through the Passamaquoddy homeland. Washington

Summer Overnight 

7th-9th One One-Week Program 7/8-12
Cobscook Institute

River Camp: River Camp is a two-week overnight summer service camp for teens interested in outdoor careers, conservation, ecology, and outdoor skill building. A partnership program between the Downeast Salmon Federation (DSF) and Cobscook Institute, teens who are accepted to River Camp are part of a co-ed youth crew and work alongside DSF professionals on projects focused on habitat restoration and recreational access. This year, participants will work on building remote campsites along the Narraguagus River and will have fun learning more advanced paddling techniques on the St. Croix River.

Washington Summer Overnight
9th-12th One-Two Week Program 7/22 -8/2
Cobscook Institute

Sailing Camp for New Sailors: This is a beginner class designed for participants to have positive early learning experiences on the water and while sailing. Building confidence, ensuring safety, demonstrating respect, courtesy to others, and good teamwork are primary goals. Participants learn basic nomenclature, seamanship, and sailing skills.


Summer Day 

4th-9th One One Week Program 7/29-8/2
Cobscook Institute

Sailing Camp for Intermediate Sailors: Intermediate students who have taken Cobscook's beginner program or have participated in a sailing training program before will build upon the introductory skills learned previously and build confidence. Participants will revisit basic nomenclature, seamanship, and sailing skills while learning more intermediate skills such as maneuvers, sail theory, and navigation rules.

Washington Summer Day 
Summer Day 

Two One Week Programs

8/5 - 16
Cultivating Community

Youth Leadership Intensive: Youth Leadership Intensive is a paid spring internship for Portland High School, Deering High School & Casco Bay High School students. Youth learn about food justice and nutrition, build leadership skills through group challenges, practice self-reflection through writing, drawing, and conversation, go on hikes and nature walks, explore the Maine coast, cook elaborate and nutritious meals, prepare a community garden for the growing season, visit sustainable farms, and connect with new people. Cultivating Community prioritizes food and housing-insecure participants and is one of the only internships in Portland that accepts and accommodates non-English speakers.

Cumberland After School Program  9th - 12th  Three Hours After School Twice a Week on T/TH for Ten Weeks 2/27 - 4/25
Cultivating Community

Youth Growers: Youth Growers is a paid summer internship for Portland High School, Deering High School & Casco Bay High School students. Youth learn about food justice and nutrition, build leadership skills through group challenges, practice self-reflection through writing, drawing, and conversation, cook elaborate and nutritious meals every day, maintain a community garden for the public to pick from, deliver bags of local vegetables to neighbors in affordable housing weekly, visit sustainable farms, and connect with new people. Cultivating Community prioritizes food and housing-insecure participants and is one of the only internships in Portland that accepts and accommodates non-English speakers.

Cumberland Summer Day Program  9th - 12th 

Two Sessions of Five Hour M-Th Four Week Programs

One in June to July

One in July to August

6/24 - 7/29
Downeast Institute for Applied Marine Research and Education

Let’s Find Out: DEI’s “Let’s Find Out” program immerses students in the world of Marine Research, where they will work alongside scientists, technicians, and educators to explore real-life situations that affect Maine’s coastal communities. This includes:

  • Marine Science Sessions 
  • Summer Camp Day Programs
  • Family and Friends Group Sessions
  • Internships for High School Students (full)
  • A Traveling Touch Tank

    *Summer Day Camps and Family/Friend sessions focus on investigation and discovery of the marine world . . . projects include investigating real-life situations, issues, solutions and decisions important to coastal communities

 *Family/Friends ½ days-Target group 6-12 (T, W, Thu by appointment)

Hancock and Washington  After School
6th-12th Weekly on T/W/Th (except holidays) Programming From May to August 8/22 - 24
East Grand School

Wilderness Adventure: This opportunity consists of two five-day wilderness adventures for up to ten students per trip, two spaces for each trip are reserved for Extended Learning Opportunity Student-Leaders (ELO) who choose to demonstrate their leadership skills as mentors and apprentices to the experienced guide services leading each trip. The remaining eight spaces (per trip) will be open to all 9th and 10th grade students in the region. The objectives of each trip are threefold: to fortify the skills acquired in outdoor education classes, to provide students lacking these skills an opportunity to learn from seasoned mentors and leaders, and to acquaint students with diverse professions available to them should they opt to pursue a livelihood in the Maine woods.


Summer Overnight

9th-12th grade Two Five Day Programs 8/14-19
East Grand School The Middle School Leadership Academy: The Academy offers up to 25 students in grades 6-8, who typically lack access to structured and safe outdoor education programming in the summer, a week of enjoyable and enriching skill-building activities at no cost to them. Students will be introduced to and practice essential outdoor learning skills, learning how effective collaboration and perseverance lead to accomplishment. These skills will prepare them for future outdoor adventures, such as the Big Eddy trip and the Allagash Wilderness Waterway trip. Five ELO Student-Leader positions will assist with the Leadership Academy design and implementation. Those Student-Leaders will hone leadership skills as mentors, helping to prepare middle schoolers with outdoor education skills such as canoe/paddling, tent set up, campsite and campfire safety, water safety, outdoor cooking, fire building, knot tying, and wilderness survival Washington Summer Day Program 6th-12th  One Five-Day Program TBA
East Grand School St. Croix Whitewater Clinic: This opportunity allows 15 rising 9th grade students and 5 ELO high school students the chance to take two school days this Spring to participate in a two part whitewater clinic, covering 10 miles on the beautiful St. Croix River in Vanceboro, Maine. Students will learn practical river navigation skills as well as the current role of the St. Croix River in local and international affairs.  Washington

School Day

9th-12th One Two Day Program TBA
Edmunds Consolidated School

Edmunds Consolidated School will use Maine Outdoor Learning Initiative funding to continue working with student and educator-created trail and outdoor learning space systems. The funding will allow them to take outdoor learning to the next level by providing equipment, training, and enhanced opportunities for learning. These opportunities will be available both within the school day and after school hours for students and their families to help build healthy life-long habits

Washington School Day
6th-8th Weekly Program Tuesday and Thursday with access to trails throughout the school year and after hours, TBA
Ellsworth School Department EMS STEM Summer Academy is a four-week summer program for Ellsworth Middle Schoolers that will be founded on partnerships with organizations that will provide students a variety of hands-on, project-based, outdoor learning experiences that will immerse students in mathematics and science learning opportunities. Ellsworth School Department is partnering with a variety of different organizations to provide a unique, rigorous and engaging program for their disadvantaged and academically struggling learners. These partners are: Acadia National Park, Woodlawn, Energy Management Consultants and Maine Outdoor School. Hancock Summer Day Program 6th-8th Four Four-Day Weeks 7/1 - 26
Fiddlehead School

Outdoor Classroom/Shelter Program at Norumbega: Beginning in early April, 6th-grade students will design a new Outdoor Classroom/Shelter guided by We Built This, a Maine nonprofit. It will be used by all three grades in the spring of 2024 to protect them from the weather, serve as a base for student’s research, and provide a space for instruction and presentation of student work. The shelter will be built at Norumbega. Once designed, We Built This will recruit students, families, and community members to do an old-fashioned “barn-raising” to build the timber frame structure.

Interdisciplinary projects for each grade level at Norumbega:

  • 6th grade students will design an outdoor shelter/classroom with handicapped accessibility, and help create and maintain trails at Norumbega.
  • 7th-grade students will focus on forest studies and climate change. They will observe and collect data on the forest population and biodiversity. They will also study the stream at Norumbega and inventory living organisms and water quality.
  • All 8th grade students will complete capstone projects on either climate studies or social justice initiatives connected to nature.
Cumberland School Day Program 6th-8th

One Day a Week for Ten Weeks for Each Class





3/27 - 6/7
Fiddlehead School

Spring After School Enrichment Program - Garden to Table: The program will meet once a week for 7 weeks and will focus on designing and preparing garden beds, teaching vegetables and/or pollinator gardening skills, and increasing ecological knowledge. Families who pick up their child with their vehicle will be eligible for transportation mileage reimbursement.


After School

6th-8th One Day for Seven Weeks 4/29 - 6/10
Fiddlehead School

Summer Camp: Weeding the gardens planted in the spring, harvesting produce, preparing meals from the garden (no additional cost), hikes, yoga, art, map making, animal tracking, and bird watching. The camps will be held outside, except in inclement weather, and will have a maximum of 14 campers.

Cumberland Summer Day Program 6th-8th Two Five Day Weeks 7/8-19
Foundation for Portland Public Schools Portland Art and Technology High School (PATHS): In the summer of 2024, PATHS is launching a new Career & Technical Education program to build career readiness for Maine’s wide variety of outdoor careers. In the summer, students in the program will start to build their skills by running a 1-2 week long outdoor adventure camp for PPS middle school students with the new CTE program staff. Cumberland Summer Day Program 9th-12th TBA TBA
Foundation for Portland Public Schools

Casco Bay High School (CBHS) Programming: Casco Bay High School (CBHS)  juniors and seniors will participate in multi-night, overnight transformative learning experiences. CBHS partners with community-based groups such as Rippleffect, the Ecology School, and the Schoodic Institute. They will focus on:

1. Leadership development activities to build self, peer, and community leadership skills.

2. Physical fitness and building a personal connection with nature through activities like sea kayaking, hiking, wilderness camping, and cooking skills, and Leave No Trace wilderness ethics.

3. Helping students find a place of centered peace and comfort in their own solitude in nature.

4. Environmental education - coastal ecosystems, organic gardening, monitoring invasive
species and managing island conservation zones through service learning projects.

Cumberland Summer Overnight Program 11th - 12th TBA TBA
Foundation for Portland Public Schools

Middle School Programming: In partnership with organizations like Rippleffect, King, Lyman-Moore, and Lincoln Middle School, students will engage in outdoor education, coupled with reflection and team building, as a cornerstone of the Foundation's social-emotional learning curriculum. Students will learn how to use outdoor activity skills as a conscious tool to manage challenging behaviors. They will offer both downhill and Nordic ski instruction to smaller groups of middle school students who have not been exposed to these activities, as well as extended outdoor leadership skills classes to any interested students.


School Day Program

(Except for Lyman-Moore which is an After School Program)

6th-8th Throughout the School Year TBA
Friends of Baxter State Park The Baxter Youth Conservation Corps is a job training and service-learning opportunity for youth from the Katahdin region of Maine. Since 2017, this program has been hiring local youth for full-time summer employment doing trail work in Baxter State Park. Participants gain valuable training, job skills, and work experience in a spectacular wilderness setting.  Aroostook, Penobscot, Piscataquis Summer Day Program 9th-12th Weekdays Through the Summer 6/17-8/9
Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters School Programs: In-school programming occurs throughout the spring. These are one-hour to three-hour long sessions and address a variety of subjects ranging from wildlife signs to water quality testing to wilderness survival. Lessons are not only designed to connect students to nature but connect to state learning standards as well. Aroostook, Penobscot School Day Program 6th - 12th Two Sessions a Day on Tuesdays and Thursday from March to the End of the School Year TBA
Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters Summer Program: The adventures only get better when school lets out for summer. These programs allow students to take their connection to the outdoors to the next level, develop leadership skills, and make new friends. Students will hike, camp, canoe, and bike with beginner-friendly instruction! For students in grades 6-10. Students in grades 11-12 can join programs as youth leaders and receive training and support. All programs in 2024 will be free! Meals are provided for overnight trips. Explore the best of the Katahdin region! Aroostook, Penobscot Summer Day and Overnight Program


(Leadership Opportunities for 11th and 12th Graders)

Seven Trips:

One in April

One in June 

Four in July

One in August 

(Summer Leadership Dates TBA)

4/10- 8/8
Friends of the Cobbossee Watershed

After School Outdoors: Watershed and nature-based learning activities after school at five middle schools twice a month in April and May. Utilizing the outdoor classrooms and forests adjacent to the school or the nearby water resources, FOCW Watershed Educators will feature grade appropriate activities from the Friend's Watershed Science Curriculum (recently aligned to the NGSS standards). Dates and times to be TBD based on the coordination with each school.

Friends of the Cobbossee anticipate twelve students at each program that is scheduled to last 1.5 hours each, for a total of 120 students and 180 contact hours.

Kennebec After School Program 6th-12th 1.5 Hours Twice a Week in April and May TBA
Friends of the Cobbossee Watershed

Spring Lake Ecology Explorations: Based out of Maranacook Lake or Cobbossee Lake, FCW will host four Lake Ecology programs (2 middle schools and two high schools) on board the FOCW Pontoon Floating Lab, the Otter 3, during the month of May, on weekends and early dismissal days. Featured will be science experiments regarding water clarity, PH, chemical composition, and the natural history of freshwater flora and fauna, all of which are hands-on. The results will be shared across the state of Maine through the Gulf of Maine Research Institutes community science programs.

Kennebec After School and Weekend Program 6th-12th Four Three-Hour Trips Through May TBA
Friends of the Cobbossee Watershed

Community Library Outreach Programs: FCW has planned hands-on, immersive freshwater aquatic ecology programs/demonstrations at every town library in the watershed. Specifically designed to serve as career exploration opportunities for middle and high school students focusing on ecological careers in freshwater ecological systems. Using freshwater touch tanks, hands-on activities, and one-on-one discussions with participants about career options.

Kennebec Summer Day Program 6th-12th 15 One-Hour Visits Across Spring and Summer TBA
Friends of the Cobbossee Watershed

Junior Watershed Scientists: Building upon the success of their 17 years of Friends of the Cobbossee Watershed's Nature Day Camp programs for grades 3rd - 5th, the FCW will host two weeklong camps for middles schoolers. Hosted by their partner in this program the Maine State YMCA Camp. The programs will be hands-on, experiential, and field-based on and around the freshwater ecosystems of Cobbossee Lake and surrounding watershed lands.

Kennebec Summer Day Program 6th-8th Two Weeklong Day-Camp Programs  TBA
Friends of the Cobbossee Watershed

Lake Ecology Explorations: Building upon the success of the May Lake Ecology Experiences, FCW is offering two middle school-age and two high school-age lake exploration days during June, July, and August. They will partner with Cobbossee Lake and Maranacook Lake with a morning session for middle school age and an afternoon session for high school students.

Kennebec Summer Day Program 6th-12th Four Half-Day Programs Across June, July and August TBA
Georgetown School Department 

Boat Building: Students in 6th Grade will work with the Maine Maritime Museum staff and volunteers to learn woodworking skills and work collaboratively to build a rowing skiff to be launched in the spring of 2024. Students will build a skiff to be launched this spring. Maine Maritime staff will complete a survey to assess students’ learning in the program.

Sagadahoc School Day Program 6th Tuesdays from March to June TBA
Georgetown School Department  Spring Expedition: Students in 6th grade will creatively solve real-world problems connected to climate change that are affecting Maine coastal communities. Students will present their solutions at a 
local community event. This will also be an opportunity for students to consider careers in 
science and public change agencies. Students in 6th grade will travel to other coastal 
communities to study the effects of climate change as it relates directly to coastal erosion, 
finding solutions to problems of erosion. Students will create a PSA or informational video 
to present to the community. 
Sagadahoc School Day Program 6th Monday - Friday from April to May 4/24 - 6/7
Boys and Girls Club of Southern Maine

BGCSM has prepared a robust and engaging program to excite students about outdoor experiences. The program's pinnacle will be two immersive trips for 50 BGCSM members to Maine Huts & Trails Flagstaff Lake Hut. Students will hike two miles from the drop-off point to an off-the-grid eco-lodge, where they can fully unplug from the digital world. This adventure will offer a wide variety of new outdoor experiences; a sample program schedule from the 2023 trip is attached.

Beyond this overnight excursion, smaller one-day outdoor activities are also planned for the summer. BGCSM’s goal is to offer opportunities for everyone’s comfort level. Day-trip excursions and experiences will include Meet a Park Ranger Trips, Hiking, Kayaking, and Ropes Course. A key focus of the program is to leverage this experience to inspire students to consider careers in the outdoor industries. The Maine outdoor economy provides exciting career opportunities that students would never have the chance to explore outside the program. This career exposure and exploration is a strategic fit with BGCSM’s organizational commitment to helping members plan for their future.

Androscoggin, Cumberland, Somerset, York Summer Overnight Program 6th -12th Two Three-Night, Four-Day Cohorts

7/16 - 19

8/13 - 16

Hearty Roots

Weekend Campouts: On 100 acres of pristine forest, Teen Retreats are designed to build friendships, lasting self-esteem, and connection to the natural world. The weekend model allows campers ample time to practice lifelong outdoor skills, build confidence and resilience, lean into play and connection, and find time to pause and reflect outside of their busy schedules.

Lincoln Spring Overnight Program

6th - 12th

Three Two-Day Programs March - May

5/1 - 5/31
Hearty Roots

Sunbeam Adventures: Designed for children and teens who identify as neurodivergent, Sunbeam offers a week of connection and adventure on Biscay Pond. Participants will be offered opportunities for challenge by choice and active engagement through swimming, paddle boarding, exploring the Maine woods, and connecting to nature in meaningful ways. This inclusive, supportive camp also invites participants to make new friends, foster independence, acknowledge self-worth, dig deep into their grit and resilience, and beam with joy.

Lincoln Summer Day Program 6th-12th Two Five-Day Programs  7/15 - 7/26
Hearty Roots

Taproot Therapeutic Adventure: Hearty Roots' out-of-the-box approach to mental health and wellness, Taproot is designed to reach youth who are facing mental or behavioral health challenges that impact their ability to meet academic and behavioral expectations throughout the school day. Sessions are tailored to the individual or group; nature-based activities are scaffolded to inspire positive growth and confidence, and the therapeutic environment is co-created with the participant(s). Taproot is fun and empowers participants to develop deeper connections to nature, community.

Lincoln School and Summer Day Program  6th - 12th

One to Two Hours a Week

Based on Students Schedule
Hearty Roots

Muscongus Navigators: Hearty Root's Coastal Navigators sessions invite teens on immersive sea kayak expeditious in Muscongus Bay. Their approach of intentionally blending adventure and wellness practices offers teens the opportunity to build resilience and connect with friends and nature in a truly restorative way all while experiencing growth, reflection, joy, and the magic of the waters and islands of the coast of Maine.

Lincoln Summer Overnight  8th - 12th

Three Six Day Sessions

6/30 - 8/9 
Hearty Roots

Biscay Explorers Overnights: Hearty Root's Biscay Explorers Campout sessions are designed for kids who are ready for a new level of adventure. Participants will get to experience a true camp out: campfire cooking and sleeping in tents under the stars! Days will be filled with exploration, hiking, swimming, paddle boarding with Hearty Roots’ intentional programming – reflection, connection, gratitude, resilience building, mindfulness – woven throughout!"

Lincoln Summer Overnight and Day Program 6th-7th

Two Overnight Four-Day Programs

One Five Day Program

8/12 - 26
Herring Gut Coastal Science Center

Junior Marine Scientist Camp: Field explorations on the St.George Peninsula, trips to Colby College’s Allen Island Campus, kayaking along the St. George River, and sailing trips in Penobscot Bay. These excursions will allow students to immerse themselves in the marine environment. They will be able to observe marine birds, mammals, and other wildlife. Hands-on marine science projects will be a feature of these weeks along the coast. Participants will be able to conduct experiments in Herring Gut's flow-through saltwater lab. Careers in marine science and trades will be a focus, along with an introduction to community science projects. Participants will collect data in several marine locations around the St. George peninsula. Data will be collected on seaweed, invertebrates, and water quality.

Knox, Lincoln, Waldo Summer Day Program 6th-8th

Three Five Day Sessions

Two in July

One in August 

7/8 - 8/16
Herring Gut Coastal Science Center

Changing Seas High School Program: A program designed to focus on climate change, how Maine’s marine economy is impacted, and sustainable solutions. Topics include ocean plastics, rising sea levels, warming waters, and sustainability. Field trips to local and regional businesses will be a prime feature of this week. Participants will be able to observe and gain insight from professionals currently working in coastal trades.

Knox, Lincoln, Waldo Summer Day Program 9th-12th One Weeklong Program 6/24-28
Herring Gut Coastal Science Center Traveling Tidepool Treks: Herring Gut will make their current Tidepool Trek Program more accessible by providing transportation for middle and high school students from convenient locations like Medomak High School, local libraries, and the Knox Museum. Their educators will transport middle and high school students down the St. George Peninsula to Drift Inn Beach or Marshall Point Lighthouse. Educators will provide a naturalist interpretation of the intertidal zone and its inhabitants. Participants will explore and learn about marine invertebrates like crabs, shrimp, snails, sea urchins, lobsters, and more! Knox, Lincoln, Waldo Community Event Program  6th-12th Five Hour Long Programs in July and August 

7/2 - 8/28


Herring Gut Coastal Science Center

Collecting Data in the Outdoors Professional Development for Teachers: This one-day professional development course will take place in the spring. Teachers will be immersed in the outdoors while learning how to engage with their students to collect data. This training will take place in a coastal habitat, but teachers will learn how they can apply these techniques to collect data near their schools. Teachers will also learn about science communication and how students can communicate information through art. Teachers will receive a stipend after submitting data that their students have collected by the end of this school year.

Knox, Lincoln, Waldo After School Program Educators One Day Program in the Spring 4/4
Holbrook Middle School RSU 63

The Holbrook Mountain Bike Club will meet after school on Wednesdays. Students will learn to ride and maintain provided bikes and about trail safety. 

The Holbrook Mountain Bike Club will meet 15 days in the summer, taking trail rides in the area. They will end the summer with a trip to Acadia National Park to ride the Carriage Roads and a trip to the Moosehead Trailhead in Greenville. All of this is at no cost to students to RSU 63 students. 

Penobscot  After School and Summer Program 6th-8th Weekly After School on Wednesdays. 15 Days in the Summer  4/24-6/12
Hurricane Island Center for Center and Leadership Oceanside: This partnership is specifically for Ocean side High School's STEM Academy and Nova programs. Ocean Side is a public high school in Rockland. Their Academy is geared towards
students who lack opportunity but express great potential and their NOVA program is an alternative education program that works with students who struggle in traditional classroom settings. Academy students are participating in ongoing spat studies and will engage in hands-on aquaculture practices. NOVA students will engage in hands-on research in the intertidal zones, learning about the interconnectedness of human and marine ecosystems. In addition to these trips to Hurricane Island, two members of Hurricane Island Center's research team are providing regular instruction that supports two projects: hands-on lessons on data interpretation and visualization using data collected by students in the spat study and a data collection project in which students will set up an intertidal monitoring site in Rockland and collect data that will be used for Hurricane Island’s intertidal zone studies.
Knox School Day 9th-12th

Three Day Trips 

Two NOVA Trips in May

One NOVA Trip in June

5/3 - 6/16


Hurricane Island Center for Center and Leadership Casco Bay: This partnership is specifically for students from Casco Bay High School. It will bring two groups to Hurricane Island in slightly different introductory programs, both aimed at easing students into the challenges and joys of outdoor learning. Program design will
integrate activities like team-building, hands-on marine science, and rock climbing
Cumberland, Knox Summer Overnight 9th-12th One Three-Day Trip 7/20-23
Hurricane Island Center for Center and Leadership  Aquaculture with the UMaine Cooperative Extension (AQ): This partnership will bring 14 students from a range of Maine’s counties to study the science and practice
of aquaculture in a five-day program. Students will learn marine science, engage in locally relevant questions
about the marine and land-based ecosystems they inhabit, and think critically about the role of Maine’s natural
resources in their futures. 4-H works with youth across the state and will help Hurricane Island connect with inland youth, with the goal of recruiting one student from
each county
Knox Summer Overnight  6th - 12th One Five-Day Trip 7/28 -8/3
Hurricane Island Center for Center and Leadership University of Maine Presque Isle (UMPI): This partnership is recruiting from Presque Isle High School. It builds on 20 students' classroom study of marine science and introduces place-based projects that connect the science students learn in the classroom to an understanding of the local
marine ecosystem. 
Aroostook  Summer Overnight  9th - 12th  One Five-Day Trip  7/15 - 19 
Hurricane Island Center for Center and Leadership The Game Loft: This partnership is geared towards students of The Game Loft's Leadership team and their I Know ME program. It will bring three groups of students to Hurricane Island this summer. The first is The Game Loft’s Student Leadership Team who will come for their Leadership Retreat. The second two groups
will come from Mount View HS as part of their I Know ME program. Both these five day programs will offer
students extended opportunities for quality science learning and leadership development on the shorelines and
waterfronts of Hurricane Island. Over the course of each program, students will engage in marine research and
coastal ecology lessons. Students will also participate in a non-electronic simulation game that challenges them
to build and maintain sustainable fisheries, using an engagement model students are familiar with through other
experiences with the Game Loft.
Knox Summer Overnight 8th-12th

Three Six-Day Trips

One in June 

One in July into August

One in August 

Hurricane Island Center for Center and Leadership 4-H at Bryant Pond: This partnership will bring 14 middle school students from the Bethel region to Hurricane Island for a six day program this summer that offers students extended opportunities for quality science learning and leadership development. NorthStar is a mentoring program that connects young people with caring adults through community engagement, cultural exchange, adventure, challenge, and leadership. This program will offer
students an opportunity to engage in coastal ecology lessons focused on plankton, marine debris, water chemistry, and the interconnectedness of human activities and marine ecosystems.
Knox, Oxford Summer Overnight 6th-8th One Six Day Program  8/4 - 9
Hurricane Island Outward Bound School

Island Adventures: This summer, with grant support from the U.S. Department of Education and the Maine Department of Education's Maine Outdoor Learning Initiative, Hurricane Island Outward Bound School (HIOBS) is offering Maine students between the ages of 13-17 a unique opportunity to explore the landscape of Maine’s coast and islands, gain hands-on leadership experience, and forge friendships and connections that last a lifetime.

Maine's rugged coast beckons for a five-day, one-of-a-kind experience where adventure awaits around every corner! Imagine the thrill of slicing through waves on a 30-ft. sailboat, the exhilaration of climbing Burnt Island’s iconic seaside cliffs, and the satisfaction of leaving your mark by contributing to an island service project. As they hike the wild trails and camp under star-studded skies, students will discover hidden strengths, make new friends, find community through shared experiences, gain leadership skills as they navigate the activities together, and return with memories they’ll carry with them for life.

Knox Summer Overnight Program 6th-12th Nine Five-Day Programs Running Monday Through Friday 6/24 - 8/31
Lincoln Academy

Through experiential learning and collaboration during the Lincoln Academy Launch program, students from disadvantaged backgrounds will feel supported in their transition to high school. Students will benefit from the opportunity to connect to new classmates and teachers, as well as upper-class student mentors. They will engage with varied marine resources and learn the concepts of a connected ecosystem through real-world application in an exploratory learning environment. Through interactions with local professionals from a diverse range of backgrounds, students will understand the importance of marine resources in their community.

Lincoln Summer Day 9th -12th Two Week-Long Sessions 8/12-23
Main Street Skowhegan

This program is free to Somerset County youth. With the goal of community transformation through outdoor recreation in mind, Main Street Skowhegan launched the Skowhegan Outdoors AmeriCorps Program in 2019 in partnership with Volunteer Maine, the Outdoor Sports Institute, and other local organizations energized by the prospect of ensuring equitable access to the outdoors via free, guided outdoor activities and gear.

In 2023, Skowhegan Outdoors hosted 202 free outdoor programs that served 1,810 area residents and offered three free weeklong summer day camps for youth grades 8-12. The summer camp topics include mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, and hiking. These initiatives are catalyzing a shift toward a healthier and more active lifestyle accessible to all Somerset County area residents.

Specific to summer day camps in 2024, Skowhegan will add a fourth week due to the camp's popularity. Summer camps are free for participants, with all instruction, gear, lunch, and transportation provided.

Somerset  Summer Day Program 9th - 12th

Four Monday - Friday Summer Camps Twice Monthly 

Youth Skills Programs and Guided Trips are Offered Periodically Throughout the Year

6/24 - 8/16
Maine Academy of Natural Sciences

Threshold Mondays: This program is a part of the Maine Academy of Natural Sciences (MeANS) curriculum and is for their students specifically. Once a month, all MeANS Threshold students and instructors will come together for “Threshold Mondays.” These will be focused on outdoor learning opportunities. From March-July, Maine Academy of Natural Sciences will conduct the following programs: a Maple syrup day; a visit to Maine Local Living Center or Bowsprit; a program with Wabanaki Reach and field trip to Norridgewock Massacre Memorial; a coastal field trip; and a field-day for students and their families to Lake George in Canaan to celebrate the end of the year with canoeing, swimming and field games.

Somerset School Day Program 9th-12th Monthly Through the School Year TBA
Maine Academy of Natural Sciences

Quarterly Intensives: This program is a part of the Maine Academy of Natural Sciences (MeANS) curriculum and is for their students specifically. Each quarter of the year, all campus students participate in “Intensives,” where they launch into a two-week, interdisciplinary exploration of the natural sciences. Venturing out on field trips, conducting independent research, and partnering with local experts. Students are tasked with creating place-based projects that apply academic content and skills to meet the needs of their school, community, and local environment. To add to their current intensives program, MeANS will reinstate their canoe excursions and add a hybrid bicycle excursion option, enabling them to take students out on local bodies of water and on nature trails that allow bikes. These excursions will occur during both the Spring and Summer intensives, and throughout the grant period. 



Somerset School Day Program 9th-12th Quarterly March - July  TBA
Maine Academy of Natural Sciences

Educator Professional Learning: Schoolwide, Maine Academy of Natural Sciences will provide educators with Personal Development with Megan-Mack Nicholson at Lennox Lodge Outdoor Leadership Center for all interested staff to become an Educational Trip Leader permit holder (March and June/July); Wilderness First Aid and CPR training for interested students; and guest instructors on a variety of topics for small group outdoor experiences.

Somerset After School and Summer Day Program Educators Two Three-Day Programs TBA
Maine Arts Academy

The Art of Biking: This program is exclusively for Maine Arts Academy students. There will be a morning group of students and an afternoon group of students learning to ride mountain bikes, learning about bike maintenance, and learning photography skills to document the "art of biking."

Kennebec Summer Day Program 9th-12th Two Half-Day Sessions on Fridays for Six Weeks  6/10 - 8/6
Maine Connections Academy

Maine Connections Academy is entirely virtual, so its Outdoor Learning programs are essential for students to have opportunities to interact in person. The Academy will use Maine Outdoor Learning Initiative funding to hold four outdoor events as part of its program: two overnight camps, a ropes course, and a day at Cow Island. This program is specifically for Connection Academy students.

Cumberland, Washington Summer Overnight and Day Program 7th - 12th

One Overnight Trip in July

One Team Building Program in July

One Day-Trip in August

One Overnight Trip in August

7/29 - 8/9
Maine Local Living School

Each program at Maine Local Living School is developed collaboratively with the school or community group participating based on their learning goals, needs, group size, and desired visit duration. There is no “one size fits all” program. Maine Local Living School offers single-day programs for up to 50 students at a time and multi-day/overnight programs for up to 25 students at a time. The school's programs include guided hands-on engagement in nature-based learning, climate change mitigation, direct participation in their food system, handcraft, and mindfulness.

Franklin  Summer Day and Overnight Community Programs 6th -12th TBA TBA
Maine Maritime Museum

Green Teen High School Internship: MMM’s Green Teen program is a five-week, after-school paid internship designed to give a cohort of six high school students the opportunity to explore a local environmental issue of their choice and then collaboratively research/design a public awareness campaign on this issue.

Sagadahoc After School program 9th - 12th

Twice Weekly for Five Weeks

2/29 - 3/26
Maine Maritime Museum

New Mainers Fly Fishing Workshops: Together, Maine Maritime Museum and Confluence Collective (CC) are offering three summer fly fishing half-day workshops for up to 60 immigrant, refugee, and asylee 6th-12th graders that build connections with Maine’s natural resources. CC is an outdoor education and community programming nonprofit with a specific focus on facilitating inclusive fly-fishing experiences for marginalized communities.

Sagadahoc Summer Day Program 6th-12th

Three Half-Day Workshops in June, July, and August

Maine Maritime Museum

New Mainer Kennebec River Ecology Cruises: Working in collaboration with Intercultural Community Center (ICC), Maine Maritimes Museum is providing Kennebec River cruises aboard MMM’s 50-passenger vessel Merrymeeting to all 6th-12th grade students participating in ICC’s Power Summer program. ICC supports immigrant, refugee, and asylee youth by offering experiences that promote English-language development and academic support.

Sagadahoc Summer Day Program

6th – 12th

Two One-Day Cruises

Maine Maritime Museum

Mariners Adventure Camp: Mariners Adventure Camp is designed to serve the social-emotional needs and intellectual curiosity of 6th-8th grade students by taking them on an interdisciplinary adventure to think about the role of trees in Maine’s history. Campers explore this natural resource through hands-on carpentry, science experiments, and forest hikes.

Sagadahoc Summer Overnight Program  6th-8th

Two Five-Day Programs

One at the End of July

One at the start of August

7/29 – 8/9

Maine TREE Foundation

The 2024 Forest Immersion Summer Intensive will provide rising 9th-12th graders an unparalleled opportunity to dive deep into Maine’s rich forest ecosystems and understand the interplay of environmental, economic, and community health. Students will take on the role of field researchers, collaborating to design and conduct in-depth scientific studies on topics from wildlife populations to forest management techniques. They will think critically to analyze complex forest data and identify potential improvements, then develop innovative solutions. The students will also have hands-on experiences using various tools and equipment, building their confidence and attaining new technical skills and abilities.

Piscataquis Summer Overnight Program 9th-12th Four Nights a Week for Six Weeks 6/23 - 8/1
Maine Youth Alliance

The Game Loft and its sister program, I Know ME, will hold various outdoor activities throughout the school year and over the summer, including overnight camping, outdoor role-playing, hiking, and more. These programs are open to members of the greater Belfast community.

Waldo After School, Summer Day and Overnight Programs 6th-12th M-F After School and During the Summer  with Some Weekend and Overnight Programming TBA
Midcoast Youth Center

Summer Compass Program: This outdoor experiential programming is free for RSU1 rising 6th through 8th graders. Students will come together for team-building and leadership challenges and explore all of Midcoast Youth Center's adventure and life skills programming opportunities, such as mountain biking, skateboarding, woodworking, trail work, baking, and gardening.

Sagadahoc  Summer Day Program 6th - 8th M - F Every Week 7/15 - 8/12
Midcoast Youth Center

Waypoint Program: Midcoast Youth Center's Waypoint program is a six-year mentorship program for 7th through 12th graders in RSU1. Students meet regularly during and after school with a supportive adult mentor to participate in outdoor education, leadership development, character building, college, and career preparation and more. Each year of Waypoint includes a different overnight, outdoor experience to new parts of Maine and even parts of greater New England.

Sagadahoc  After School, Summer Day and Overnight Program 7th - 12th On Going Support Through the Academic Year and Summer  7/15 - 8/12
MSAD #17 Bryant Pond 4-H Camp: Students will participate in Bryant Pond 4-H Camp week-long sessions of their choosing. This program is specifically for MSAD #17 students. Oxford Summer Overnight Program 6th - 8th Students Can Choose Between Multiple Weeklong Overnight Camp TBA
MSAD #17 Youth Leadership Program: Students in the Youth Leadership Program will participate in training and experiences to grow their skills in wilderness survival and leadership through day and overnight trips. This program is specifically for MSAD #17 students in their Youth Leadership Program. Oxford Summer Day and Overnight Program 9th - 12th TBA TBA
MSAD #17 Summer Apprenticeship: Students will apprentice under local non-profits and businesses tied to outdoor industries. They will be paid for their time. This program is specifically for MSAD #17 High School students. Oxford Community Program 9th - 12th Almost daily during the summer TBA
MSAD #4 Gardening and Outdoor Rec: From March to the end of the school year, students have the opportunity to participate in gardening or outdoor recreation in their 6th - 9th grade elective selection or in a weekly after school club focused on either topic.  Piscataquis  School Day and/or After School Program 6th - 9th Three Classes a Week During the School Day and/or One Meeting Weekly After School  3/25 - 6/7
MSAD #4 Summer Intensive: Students will be involved in project-based activities with mentors in the community through curriculum-based excursions.  Piscataquis  Summer Day Program 6th - 12th Two Days a Week for Six Weeks 7/8 - 8/9
MSAD 54 REACH Adventure Camp: MSAD 54's REACH Adventure Camp is a day camp experience for incoming 6th grade through incoming 9th grade students (in school year 24/25). They will offer clinics on high/low ropes course, fly fishing, basic and tandem canoeing, hiking, map and compass reading, and outdoor survival skills. Each week will contain three days of instructional time through hands on learning and followed by two days of field trips throughout central and coastal Maine that will put students' newly learned skills to the test!  Somerset Summer Day Program 6th - 8th Five days a Week for Three Weeks 7/29 - 8/16
MSAD59 Maine Expedition: Students will go on a four day, three night hike into Katahdin. (History credit possible). This program is for MSAD 59 students specifically. Somerset Summer Overnight Program 6th - 12th Two Prep Days and a One Four-Day Trip 8/7 - 8/15
MSAD59 Student Work Experience: Students will earn science credit while managing MSAD 59's aquaponics facility and greenhouse throughout the summer. This program is for MSAD students specifically. Somerset Summer Day 6th - 12th Weekly for eight Weeks 6/17 - 8/27
Mt. Ararat High School The overarching goal of Mt. Ararat High School's Eagles SOAR summer program is to improve the chance for ALL students to lead successful, happy lives. The program immerses students in the natural and cultural treasures of their region via outdoor discovery as well as traditional boatbuilding.  Designed to actively promote mental and physical health while facilitating the discovery of new ideas, skills and interests, the program prioritizes positive, supportive relationships with both peers and adults. With the “whole child” in mind, program leaders take particular care to foster each student’s self confidence and positive self regard. Cumberland, Sagadahoc Simmer Day 9th -12th One Three-Day Program, T - Th, for Six Weeks  7/9 - 8/15
Portland Parks Conservancy

The Portland Youth Corps promotes personal and professional growth through community service, environmental stewardship, and hands-on conservation opportunities within Portland's beautiful parks and green spaces. Participants implement stewardship projects while also receiving mentorship from program leaders, learning about park management, and experiencing a variety of outdoor adventures with partners like SailMaine and the Maine Island Trail Association. Participants also receive a modest stipend at the end of each session.

Cumberland After School and Summer Day Programs 9th - 12th

2.5-3 Hours on Wednesdays for Eight Weeks in the Spring

Two Four-Week Sessions M-F 9am - 4pm  

4/3 -8/9
Rangeley Lakes Regional School

Rangeley Lakes Regional School is working to get pre K-12 involved in their greenhouse, including harvesting the vegetables, harvesting crops for their cafeteria, and turning cafeteria waste into compost to go back to the gardens.

The programming will start in the Fall of 2024 after the Greenhouse is constructed, and specific activities will be determined by the classroom teachers in collaboration with the greenhouse coordinators and the Garden Club. (The Garden Club is an extracurricular activity consisting of two teacher advisors and any high student who wishes to participate.) Activities may include tracking planting dates, managing seedling germination, transferring plants, maintaining the compost, adding soil amendments, and managing pests. Academic lessons can include exploring the costs of gardening versus purchasing vegetables, relating germination and growth to heat and light levels, investigating the cultural origins of food, and using plants as models for art classes.

Franklin After School and Community Programs Pre-K - 12th

Volunteer Construction Days in April - June and

Continuous Programming Throughout the 2024-2025 School Year

4/24 - 6/14 

2024 - 2025 School Year


ROLE: A middle and high school outdoor leadership education program called ROLE (Rippleffect Outdoor Leadership Education). Middle school students participate after school once a week for four hours in skill building then culminate with a 3 day wilderness expedition. 

High School ROLE is a semester-long course taught at school with multiple field expeditions throughout the semester. Note: Lyman Moore Middle School ROLE is a daily semester long course for students as well.

Cumberland  After School - School Day Program 6th - 12th Four Hours Weekly  TBA

Cow Island: Students from Ripple partner schools will have access to summer camp expeditions and overnight programs based on their Cow Island (Casco Bay) campus.

Cumberland Summer Day and Overnight Program 6th - 12th TBA TBA

Internship: High School Students from Rippleffect's partner schools will be eligible for one of eight Rippleffect Intern Guide & Environmental Steward positions that will be a summer long internship.

Cumberland Summer Day Program 9th -12th TBA TBA
Rivers & Roads Maine 

Rivers and Roads Empowering Futures program is a combination of gardening and culinary classes designed as a comprehensive and innovative learning experience for 6th through 12th graders in Fryeburg and the surrounding rural areas.

Oxford Summer Day 9th - 12th M-F from July to August 7/1 - 8/9
RSU #4

RSU #4’s Integrated Curriculum seamlessly blends outdoor education with leadership development, providing a distinctive and innovative educational experience through four units covering paddling, fishing, biking, camping, and hiking. 

Androscoggin  School and Summer Day Programs 9th - 12th

Every Other Day During the School Year

Three Summer Sessions in June, July and August Respectively 

Spring Dates TBA 

7/6 - 8/15 

RSU 40 Medomak Middle School students will participate in The Leadership School at the Kieve Wavus campus for a week this May for an outdoor learning opportunity. The entire 7th and 8th grade will be participating in this program.  Lincoln After School Program 7th - 8th One Week in May 5/13 - 17
RSU 56 This Outdoor Learning program is for RSU 56 specifically. Day events will include fishing, hiking, and canoeing. Overnight events will include tenting as well.  Oxford Summer Day and Overnight Program 9th - 12th Two Weeks of Day Programs and One Week of Overnight Programming TBD
Rural Aspirations Project

The Maine Forest Collaborative (MFC) empowers rural youth to contribute actively to the vitality of Maine's forested communities. MFC is a project-based program fostering sustainable school/community partnerships, focusing on giving students access to and connection with their region's natural assets. Using design thinking, inquiry-driven, and place-based approaches, students take ownership of their learning, solving authentic challenges in their community. With guidance from community partners, experts, and each other, students iterate their solutions to natural resource challenges. While working through this project, students engage in outdoor learning experiences, field trips, and cohort days, deepening their connection to natural resources and the outdoors and learning about natural resource innovation in the state.

Statewide Community Event 9th - 12th Year or Semester long Program within Participating Schools Every class day throughout the remainder of the school year.
Sailing Ships Maine The Coastal Maritime Immersion program will provide an opportunity for students from Maine to spend a week living, learning, and working aboard a sailing vessel in Casco Bay. Students will learn traditional sailing skills, including basic navigation, marlinspike seamanship, sail handling, watchkeeping, and vessel safety while learning to live with new people, cooking meals, and keeping the close living quarters clean and organized. Students will participate in Maine coastal experiences, including island exploration, historical site visits, coastal hikes, swim calls, kayaking, paddle boarding, beach campfires, and stargazing. Cumberland Summer Overnight Program 6th - 12th  TBA 6/10 - 8/30
SailMaine  The SailMaine City Sailors program provides free access to sailing experiences for underserved youth in Maine. They coordinate with partner organizations like public schools and community centers to build tailored programs. All experiences include on-the-water sailing lessons, with gear, food, transportation and instruction provided. To find out more, or if you know an organization that would like to be involved, please click their link. Cumberland After School and Summer Day Program  6th - 12th Weekly Throughout the Summer 4/3 - 8/23
Scarborough Middle School

A school-day instructional unit called Introduction to Field Studies, which will integrate outdoor education opportunities into a disciplinary unit that draws upon district literacy, math, and science standards. This pilot program in a seventh-grade cohort will provide the basis for future professional development in interdisciplinary and outdoor education-integrated curriculum writing.

Cumberland School Day Program 6th - 8th Daily for Eight Weeks 4/8 - 6/7
Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park

The Schoodic Education Adventure (SEA) program provides a three-day and two-night experiential environmental education program on Schoodic's campus within Acadia National Park. They work primarily with middle school classes and a small number of high schools. This outdoor education program is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards and is integrated across the Common Core. The institute works closely with teachers to integrate SEA into the classroom curriculum, ensuring students in the program are getting the most benefit from the teacher-selected programming. Students receive 22+ hours of curriculum-based instruction over three days.

Hancock Summer Overnight 6th - 8th Three-Day Programs from June to July 4/22 - 6/21
Somali Bantu Community Association

This is the launch of Somali Bantu Community Association's first After-school program, “Explore Careers! Honor the Outdoors (ECHO).” This is a 9-week spring program that will begin April 3rd and take place every Wednesday from 2:45-6 pm. The target audience for this program are 25 Somali Bantu middle and high school students. This program aims to empower and expand Somali Bantu Youth knowledge in careers based in the great outdoors and local farms while fostering a deep connection with nature, communities, and the wisdom gained from intergenerational connections. These educational excursions are designed to expose students to valuable learning experiences outside the classroom. Through intergenerational connections, we aim to provide valuable insights into various farming techniques and career opportunities in the agricultural and outdoor sectors. All necessary materials for youth to participate in these field trips are provided, offering a low barrier requirement.

Androscoggin After School 6th-12th Daily After School for Three Months 4/4 - 6/5
South Portland School Department The South Portland School Department is offering a variety of programs to connect students to the natural world.  Cumberland School Day, After School, and Summer Day Programming 6th - 12th  Three Months of Programming in May, June, and July TBA
Teens to Trails Free Ski Day at Black Mountain: Teens to Trails is looking forward to returning to Black Mountain of Maine on Sunday, March 10th, for a full day of downhill skiing, tubing, and Nordic skiing. Oxford Weekend Program 6th-12th One Day-Long Event 3/10
Teens to Trails

The Life Happens Outside® Challenge: The Life Happens Outside® Challenge is a way for an entire middle school community to intentionally spend lots of time outside for one week.

Every minute outside counts — from sports practice to dog walking, camping in the yard, or doing homework in the park. The school that spends the most time outside wins!

It’s best when the whole school takes part and the community supports them.

Across the State School Day and After School Programming 6th - 8th

One Weeklong Competition 

5/10 - 17
Teens to Trails

Middle School Camden Hills Campout: Teens to Trails is excited to be able to offer a FREE middle school campout- a weekend of camping, hiking, exploring, playing, and connecting. Teens to Trails started supporting middle schools in 2021 and have been so impressed with the energy and curiosity of this age group. We can’t wait to go camping with your students!

Due to construction at Camden Hills State Park, this program is currently planned to take place at Birch Point Beach State Park in Owls Head. There will be multiple privy options but zero running water. If the construction is completed before May 10-12 Teens to Trails will shift their program back to CHSP which will be communicated to those who are registered.

Knox Weekend Overnight Program 6th - 8th One Weekend Overnight Trip in May  5/10-12
Teens to Trails Adventure Bound: Outdoor Clubs are invited to camp out at Adventure Bound in Caratunk for 1 or 2 nights and spend the weekend exploring the area around The Forks, where the Dead and Kennebec Rivers meet. On Saturday, clubs can choose from various activities such as high ropes elements, indoor rock climbing, hiking, canoe and stand-up paddle boarding, or a swim in the crisp water at Moxie Falls. In the evening, cook delicious meals over your camp stoves, play fun games, swim in the pool, or cozy up to the campfire and participate in their annual s’more competition. Finish up the weekend with a full-day whitewater rafting adventure on the Kennebec River, followed by a chicken barbecue. Somerset Weekend Overnight Program 8th - 12th One Weekend in May  5/17 - 19
Teens to Trails

Along with the above programming, Teens to Trails is offering several on going programs throughout the year that schools and outdoor clubs can register for, including: guided canoe trips, wilderness first aid classes and school initiated recreation trips

Across the State Various  6th - 12th Various  Various 
The Ecology School

The Summer Ecology Academy: The Summer Ecology Academy offers scholarships to 90 Maine campers, grades 6th – 9th,to attend a six-day session of immersive, overnight programming at The Ecology School’s River Bend Farm. The Academy brings together the best of Maine summer camp with challenging ecology academics, allowing students to live and learn together, sharing educational  activities such as exploring the forests, fields, onsite farm; community-style mealtimes; and electives.

York Summer Overnight  6th - 9th

Three Weeklong Summer Camps

One in Late June into July

Two in August 

6/30 - 8/16
The Ecology School

Apprenticeship Program: An eight-week paid apprenticeship in regenerative farming. Under the dedicated mentorship of the Farm Manager and Farm Assistant, interested young Mainers engage in nature-based learning, build agricultural skills, and prepare for career opportunities in Maine’s regenerative farming industry. Apprentices learn and work on the one-acre vegetable and fruit Agroecology Production Field, Education Plots, and Orchard. The Student Farm Apprenticeship embraces three main educational methods to provide a holistic and supportive learning environment.

York Summer Day Program 9th - 12th Eight Weeks and 280 Hours M-F from June to August TBD by Student
Tree Street Youth

Longley Expeditionary Summer Academies is a co-led initiative between Street Youth and Lewiston Public Schools. High school youth will participate in summer expeditions with a focus on specific academic, social-emotional, and leadership goals. Expeditions aim to develop students' experiences of Maine's environment, spanning from its coastlines to its more mountainous regions. Students will participate in trips to hike mountains, follow rivers and streams, examine coastlines, and much more. They will explore climate change, scientific discoveries, as well as their personal takeaways from time spent in nature. This program is for students from Lewiston Public Schools.

Androscoggin Summer Day 9th - 12th Four Hours M-F for Six weeks 6/20 - 8/09
UMaine 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Tanglewood Opportunities for two to four Maine schools to attend a two-day/one-night or three-day/two-night Open Air Classroom Program. These programs will focus on teaching forest and marine ecology through the lens of discovery and skill building. All lessons are standards-aligned and designed to be engaging and hands-on learning experiences for students. Programs highlight Maine career paths such as forestry, surveying, guiding, outdoor educator, field biologist, and more. The goal is to provide a spark for students to explore the outdoors more. Waldo Spring Overnight Program 6th - 8th Four Two or Three-Day Programs 5/9 - 6/5
UMaine 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Tanglewood What do outdoor recreation skills, music, visual arts, archery, ecology, and STEM have in common? They are all skills, careers, or interests that staff who work at summer camps have. Each day will feature exciting explorations around Tanglewood building knowledge, skills, and comfortability in the outdoors. We’ll hike in Camden Hills State Park, canoe, spend time on the archery range, meet with Maine Guides and climate scientists, explore the seashore, and so much more. Campers have free choice electives in the afternoon and recreation time each day. Evenings feature traditional overnight camp evening programs such as capture the flag, scavenger hunts, and campfires. Waldo Overnight Program 6th - 8th Six-Day Five-Night Program


7/28 - 8/4

Wiscasset Middle High School Teachers will develop cross curricular, place-based, outdoor learning lessons that will be taught outside and on the trails behind WMHS. Community members and students, with the support of this project's coordinator, will improve the trails and build seating for outdoor learning. Lincoln School Day and After School Community Program  6th - 12th

Curriculum Development - Two hours a week from April to the end of May

Trail Work Two - Three Days a Week Through the Summer

4/10 - 8/23
Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment

School Field Trips: During Field Trips with schools, students will get an up close and hands-on experience with agriculture and food. Students are able to visit Wolfe’s Neck Farm’s barns, fields, and pastures across more than 600 acres of coastal campus to learn about how their organic and regenerative agriculture practices are building healthy soils, creating sustainable food systems, and impacting the climate and ecosystems. Field Trips can be customized to the learning objectives of each specific class.

Cumberland School day Programming 6th - 8th Day Long Field Trips Field Trips Can be Scheduled though April - June
Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment

Farm Camp: At Farm Camp, kids engage in hands-on learning immersing them in sustainable agriculture and the environment. From caring for livestock, tending (and tasting) what crops, and exploring the surrounding ecosystems, campers fill their days with discovery. While emphasizing play, exploration, and farm-based activities, campers will try new things, gain confidence, and grow in their individual relationship with farming and food. Activities are customized for each age group of camper.

Cumberland Summer Day  6th - 8th Daily Program M-F from June to August 6/17 - 8/23


The contents and opinions represented on the pages linked above do not represent the official views of the Maine Department of Education, the State of Maine, or the US Department of Education. 


Natalie Owens

RFA Grant Coordinator, Office of Federal Emergency Relief Programs
Phone: 207-458-3180