September eNewsletter

Stars Over Katahdin, Katahdin Learning Project, 6 years, and more…

We’re aglow with good energy here at Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters as we’ve passed the 6th birthday of the national monument. On Aug 27, at New England Outdoor Center, we gathered to toast what we’ve accomplished together in the last year: the introduction of the KAWW Access Act, over 10,000 experiences through the Katahdin Learning Project, and growing relationships with the National Park Service, Wabanaki organizations, and the Katahdin region community.

Stars Over Katahdin recap – Another important annual event just took place! Stars Over Katahdin was back in person this past Saturday at Taylor’s Katahdin View Camps with guests from the Katahdin region, Maine, and even as far as Florida. During the daytime programming, DIY stomp rockets with Rebecca Spitz and a scale model of the solar system with John Meader were popular with young people. Telescope views of solar prominences and a lecture with Shawn Laatsch of the Versant Astronomy Center were highlights for adults. Once the sun began to set, we returned to our annual campfire chats and then were treated to brilliant, bright night skies before cloud cover started to signal closing time. Thank you to Taylor’s Camps, Dark Sky Maine, and all our wonderful volunteers who made this event possible!

Couldn’t make it for the in-person event? We conducting our popular Stars Over Katahdin webinar again this year!  Learn more (and stay tuned for the recording) at

Katahdin Learning Project monument trips – School is back in session which means students are joining the Katahdin Learning Project (KLP) for educational trips in Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument (KAWW). KLP worked closely with NPS staff this summer to develop programs that meaningfully connect students with the monument. Our programs are hands-on, place-based, and most importantly FUN!

Guests seated during the speaking program at the 6th Anniversary.

Lucas St. Clair shares remarks during the speaking program at the 6th Anniversary. Photo credit: James E. Francis, Sr.

Anniversary recap – At the 6th Anniversary party, we were joined by over 170 people – board members, staff, members, sponsors, community partners and more. We heard from Acting Executive Director Sam Deeran, KAWW Superintendent Mark Wimmer, Board Chair Molly Ross, Development Director Meghan Cooper, and board member Lucas St. Clair. The speaking program was followed by an amazing performance from Firefly the Hybrid who shared traditional Wabanaki songs and then invited us into a round dance followed by a dance party. The Anniversary was the first time we had 2021 annual reports available.

You can view the Woods & Waters report online or we are happy to send you a copy by request.

Ripple effect – As Friends here in the Katahdin region, we strive to amplify the work of our local, regional, and national colleagues and bring news to you from Katahdin Woods and Waters and the communities connected to it.

  • Join the Maine Outdoor Film Festival and the Maine Woods Rambler for an evening of outdoor adventure and conservation films shown outdoors on the eve of the awesome bike adventure race. It’s happening on Sat, Sept 24, at 7pm at New England Outdoor Center in Millinocket. Learn more about the MOFF event here.
  • Friends’ own Elise Goplerud was recently asked to contribute to Bendable, a “community powered learning marketplace” here in Maine. She chose the topic: Developing a deep connection to nature. See what Elise wrote about here.
  • Bob Meadows, of the NPS, visited the monument to collect night sky data to further quantify the quality of the night sky experience at the monument. Bob concurred that the night skies are of superb quality and some of the darkest east of the Mississippi.
  • Our friends at Outdoor Sport Institute (“OSI”) are hiring! OSI is looking for a full-time team member based in the Katahdin region. This person will work intimately with communities and stakeholders across the region to fulfill OSI’s mission of building resilience in people and communities through human powered outdoor recreation. You can check out the job posting here.

Sponsor Spotlight – Thank you to the National Parks Conservation Association, sponsoring Friends at the Lookout level in 2022! NPCA is a strong supporter of Friends, the monument, and all of America’s national parks.

NPCA logo

And thank you Ellis’ Family Markets–a family-owned grocery store with locations in Patten and East Millinocket–for your Hathorn level sponsorship and commitment to the communities of the Katahdin region.

Ellis Family Market logo

Sponsors provide crucial funding that supports our mission and work. To learn more, visit or contact

—This blog post was adapted from an email transmitted on September 20, 2022. To sign up for our email list, please email—