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March 22 -26

FREE! | All ages

• forums

• hands-on workshops

• games

• something for everyone

• 70+ activities & events

science is everywhere

Headliner Event

From March 30 - April 16, 2023, Penobscot Theatre Company presents Queen by Madhuri Shekar. The Maine Science Festival will produce discussions/forums throughout the run of Queen, including both pre-show talks exploring some of the science-themed topics examined in Queen and talkbacks. Before the opening of Queen, the MSF will have events during the Festival itself (March 22-26, 2023) that will also address some of the science around bees and Maine.

Kate Dickerson, Executive Director of the Maine Discovery Museum, noted, “Having artists and arts organizations involved with the Maine Science Festival has been part of the MSF’s DNA from the beginning. We’re excited to continue these deep collaborations with Penobscot Theatre Company with our largest program.”

Use code MSF2023 at checkout

for a special MSF discount:

$20 tickets for the show!

Limited number available

Science Trivia Night

Wednesday, March 22nd | 6:30-8:00 PM

Sea Dog Barrel Room, 26 Front Street, Bangor


Join fellow trivia players for a night of science trivia created especially for the Maine Science Festival!

Event type: trivia

Moderator: Matt Dexter, Christine B Foundation

Recommended Audience: high school and up

Field Trip Day

Thursday, March 23rd | 9:45 AM - 12:45 PM

Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor


Our Field Trip Day is for 7th & 8th grade students from schools in Maine, with the day’s programming specifically designed for this age group.


These events are limited to those schools that sign up in the preceding months. If you are interested in learning more about the 2024 Maine Science Festival Field Trip Day or would like to be notified when sign-ups are open, please send an email to The Field Trip Day is provided free of charge to the schools that attend.

Sponsor: University of Maine

Science on Tap presents: Bees!

Thursday, March 23rd | 6:30-8:00 PM

Mason's Brewing Company, 15 Hardy Street, Brewer


Sometimes the best learning takes place in a bar. Relaxed atmospheres…..big science….  Science on Tap is a 21+ event. 


This year we are talking BEES! We’ve got the Penobscot County Bee Keepers in the house for a honey tasting and a talk on the science of beekeeping, including how pollination affects the flavor of honey. Then, we have Mason's Brewing Company’s head brewer on tap to talk about their brand new mead - Buzz Macallister - and what mead is, how it’s made, and other fun facts. We’ll finish the night with a tasting of their mead and lots of fun conversation! Mason’s full beer and food menu will be available to round out the evening. 

Event type: Forum

Presenters: Matt York, Head Brewer, Mason’s Brewing Company; Dave Fiacco, Penobscot County Bee Keepers; and Phil Fanning, University of Maine

Moderator: Jen Shepard, Penobscot Theatre Company

Audience: 21+

Teen Tech Night, Presented by Project>Login

Friday, March 24th | 4:30 - 7:00 PM

Maine Discovery Museum, 74 Main Street, Bangor

SOLD OUT!  To be added to the waiting list, sign up here!


Hey, middle schoolers - discover the world of computers and information technology? Learn, share, collaborate, and explore cutting-edge software and web-based tools. With workshops and hands-on activities, the program is designed for maximum engagement! 



• Please bring a tablet, laptop, or smartphone. If you need to borrow one, email us at

• Drop-off event; pizza dinner provided for participants.

Event type: Middle school workshops, hands-on activities, sessions

Audience: middle schoolers

SOLD OUT!  To be added to the waiting list, sign up here!

5 Minute Genius™

Friday, March 24th | 7:30 PM

Bangor Arts Exchange, 193 Exchange Street, Bangor


5 Minute Genius™ features short, sharp talks by some of Maine’s finest scientists with 5 minutes per talk, plus 5 minutes for questions. Presenting a sprint through some of the most remarkable, cutting-edge science in Maine - you will feel like a genius in no time!  Want more? Stick around for a reception after the event.

Event type: Presentation


Dan Cortex, The Jackson Laboratory
Caitlin Howell, University of Maine
Dave Levine, IDEXX
Ian Meng, University of New England
Marko Pende, MDI Biological Laboratory
Salimeh Sekeh, University of Main

Alaina Weinheimer Bigelow Laboratory of Ocean Sciences

Check out our 2023 geniuses!

Moderator: Kate Dickerson, Maine Discovery Museum

​Sponsor: Maine Technology Institute

Recommended Audience: high school and up

Exploration Stations - Engage, Examine, Experiment

Saturday, March 25th | 9 AM - 4 PM

Cross Insurance Center Ballroom, 515 Main Street, Bangor

Roll up your sleeves and learn through various hands-on activities from scientists and practitioners around the state. Make sure to stop in and visit each activity and discover that science is everywhere!

Activities include:
• Stormwater Modeling - Bangor Area Stormwater Group (BASWG) • Coding - Girl Scouts of Maine • What Keeps Boats Afloat? - Hurricane Island Center for Science and Leadership • TRASH to ART - Kim Bernard, Artist • Movement and health - Kinotek • “Stream Smart” table - NMFS/NOAA • Energy Wars - Owls Head Transportation Museum • DIY drug formulation - Rho Chi Honor Society/Husson University • Ocean acidification and tide pool organisms - Southern Maine Community College • Solar eclipse viewing / Meteorites & asteroids! - Versant Power Astronomy Center & Maine Mineral & Gem Museum • Microbiology Diagnosis! - Husson University • Mystery box & tree ID activity/leaf prints - Great Pond Mountain Trust • Magnificent Moss - Woodland Pond School • Photosynthesis and climate change - University of Maine at Fort Kent • Building trusses - Challenger Learning Center of Maine • Nature Bingo - Bangor Land Trust • General Dynamics / Bath Iron Works • 3D printed wind turbine / Exhibit - Versant Power & Maine Discovery Museum Wind exhibit • Deep Dive Climate Panels - Maine Public • Kinetic sculptures and 3d printing - Bangor Makerspace • Ocean Microplastics - Maine Maritime Academy

Event type: Hands-on

Recommended Audience: all ages

Smarter Planet or Wiser Earth? Two Models for the AI Systems Transforming Our World

Saturday, March 25th | 9:30-10:30 AM

Meeting Rooms 1&2, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

There is an emerging fundamental paradigm shift in computer programming and Artificial Intelligence (AI). It is a shift away from the “Standard Model” of the “Turing Machine,” to a “Turing Child” model that uses non-algorithmic methods of reasoning drawn from negotiation, group problem-solving, and conflict transformation to pursue agreements through collaborative dialogue between agents with differing sets of starting assumptions. In the realms of applied technology, the first model has been used to develop “smart” systems for a “Smarter Planet”; the second model is emerging as a path to more inclusive, just, sustainable, holistic systems that can promote a “Wiser Earth.”

Event type: Talk

Presenter:  Gray Cox, College of the Atlantic

Moderator: Jennifer Dann

​Recommended Audience: middle school and up

Noah Webster: Epidemiologist Revisited

Saturday, March 25th | 9:45-10:45 AM

Meeting Room C, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

Known to most of us for his speller and dictionary, Webster might be considered our first epidemiologist. We'll talk about understanding disease, epidemics, public health, and politics 200 years ago.

Event type: Talk

Presenter: Richard Kahn

Moderator: Tanya Emery

​Recommended Audience: high school and up

Rapid Research Experience

Saturday, March 25th | 10 AM - 2 PM

Meeting Rooms A&B, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

The VEMI Lab will be holding a rapid research experience for MSF goers. Visit our students, develop a hypothesis, test it, crunch the data, and see if you are right! 

Event type: Hands-on

Presenters: Rick Corey, RJ Perry, Grant Beals, Nick Giudice, Paul Fink, Emily Blackwood, Justin Brown, Anna Johnson, Sean Radel, Jake Loranger, Aleigha Morgan, Sam Orlando, Ersi Cako, Jake Doolittle, Alexa Guerrero, Darien Orethun, Cedric Fahey, Henry Kindler, Georgia Doore, Ainslie Allen, Em Hanscom, Maher Alsamsam, Anthony Caccese, Theo Erikson, Roisin Rumsey VEMI Lab, University of Maine

​Recommended Audience: middle school and up

Maine Invention Convention

Saturday, March 25th | 10 AM - 2 PM

Prefunction Area, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

The Maine Invention Convention (a program of the Maine Discovery Museum) is a statewide competition that promotes innovative problem-solving and inventing by Maine middle school students. Students work with their peers and teachers to identify and solve problems using the Innovation Engineering process. At this event, students from each participating school compete for the top invention awards.

Event type: Poster Session

Moderator: Jada Robinson, Maine Discovery Museum

Recommended Audience: all ages

Diving into Ancient Oceans

Saturday, March 25th | 10:00-11:30 AM 

Meeting Rooms 3&4, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

In 2021, University of Maine scientists led an ocean research expedition to learn about the past ocean and climate history. In this workshop, the UMaine team will cover five different sectors of research explored in the expedition using short (3-5 minute) films and hands-on activities involving enlarged, 3D-printed models of the microfossils. The sectors that will be covered: 1) the scientific motivation, 2) collection and analysis of seawater, 3) exploration of sea life, particularly plankton, 4) investigation of sediment cores from the sea floor, and 5) take-home messages, discoveries, and overview. Scientists on the expedition will be present to answer questions and share their experiences.

Event type: Workshop

Presenter: Katherine Allen, University of Maine

​Recommended Audience: All ages

Science Lab
Pathogens and Your Immune System

Saturday, March 25th | 11 AM - 12 PM 

Meeting Room C, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

We hear all about COVID-19, monkeypox, the flu, and RSV in the news. How does our immune system work to protect us from these pathogens? How can we help our immune system do this? What happens if it doesn't work as intended?

Event type: Talk

Presenter:  Elisabeth Marnik Ph.D., Husson University 

Moderator: Agnieszka Carpenter, Bioscience Association of Maine

Sponsor: Bioscience Association of Maine

Recommended Audience: high school and up

Solar Eclipse
Observing the Solar Eclipse of 2023 and Totality 2024

Saturday, March 25th | 11 AM - 12 PM 

Meeting Room D, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

Shawn Laatsch, John Meader, and Larry Berz will share how to prepare for the upcoming solar eclipses visible in Maine, including the Total Solar Eclipse of 2024! The workshop will include how eclipses work, how to see them, and some simple ways to construct pinhole projectors for safe viewing.

Event type: Talk


Shawn Laatsch, Versant Power Astronomy Center

John Meader, Northern Stars Planetarium

Larry Berz, Lee Academy

Moderator: Kirsten Hibbard, Challenger Learning Center of Maine

Recommended Audience: all ages

Wabanaki Knowledge and Ways of Knowing

Saturday, March 25th | 12 - 1 PM 

Meeting Room 3&4, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

Micah Pawling will share information about a community engagement project with the Passamaquoddy Tribe on an elder named Sabattis Tomah of Indian Township who practiced traditional plant medicines.


Event type: Presentation
Presenter: Micah Pawling, University of Maine
Moderator: Kate Dickerson, Maine Discovery Museum
Recommended Audience: high school and up

The Maine Space Complex: Engage Maine in the New Space Economy

Saturday, March 25th | 1 - 2 PM

Meeting Rooms 1&2, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

The Maine Space Complex is a unifying and aspiring vision for a coordinated effort to leverage Maine's research, education, and business assets to build capability and facilitate engagement of Maine students, educators, researchers, and businesses in the new space economy value chain. Doing so will position Maine to become a leader in the emerging and fast-growing market of launching low-cost small satellites into polar orbits using small, low-cost launch vehicles.

Event type: Presentation

Presenters: Terry Shehata, Ph.D., Executive Director, Maine Space Grant Consortium, Ali Abedi, University of Maine

Moderator: John Thompson, University of Maine 

Sponsor: FMI, A Spirit Aerospace Company

Recommended Audience: all ages

Photo credit: NASA

Two Flamingos
Stories of Fluids and Marvelous Beasts

Saturday, March 25th | 1 - 2 PM 

Meeting Room C, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

Fluids outline many animals’ world. Have you ever wondered how jumping springtails, millimeter-sized arthropods, have supreme control of their taking off and landing? Or how do water striders, insects that live at the air-water interface, “fly” over the surface of turbulent rivers? And how do flamingos produce tornado-like vortices with their bill, head, and feet to effectively filter-feed microorganisms underwater? Find out about fluids and marvelous beasts at this session!

Event type: Presentation

Presenters: Víctor M. Ortega Jiménez, Assistant Professor, School of Biology and Ecology, University of Maine

Moderator: Anne Krieg, City of Bangor

Recommended Audience: middle school and up

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Cosmic Views with the James Webb Space Telescope

Saturday, March 25th | 2:15 - 3:15 PM 

Meeting Room 1&2, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

This presentation will share the incredible science of the latest space telescope JWST! Shawn is a community partner for NASA on the JWST project, and Dale has time on this telescope for research. We will share how the telescope works, awesome images for the telescope, and take a look at how it is revolutionizing our understanding of the universe.

Event type: Presentation

Presenters: Shawn Laatsch, Versant Power Astronomy Center and Dale Kocevski, Colby College

Moderator: Marissa Minor, Versant Power

Sponsor: Versant Power

Recommended Audience: all ages

Cheering Fans
Pressure Level: Concerts, Loudness, Hearing Loss, & More

Saturday, March 25th | 3 - 4 PM 

Meeting Room 3&4, Cross Insurance Center, 515 Main Street, Bangor

While over-the-top concerts entertain and excite, excessive sound pressures at live events can potentially harm audiences and disturb neighbors. This presentation will introduce Sound Pressure Level (SPL), the objective metric used by audio engineers, audiologists, acousticians, and law enforcement to make practical, aesthetical, medical, and legal decisions regarding the loudness of sound. A variety of SPL subtopics will be explored, including the subjectivity of concert sound levels, exposure and hearing loss, measurement technologies, and legal concerns.

Event type: Presentation

Presenters: Eric Ferguson, Husson University

Moderator:  Mac Stetzer, University of Maine

​Sponsor: Central Maine Power

Recommended Audience: middle school and up

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Scavenger Hunt

Sunday, March 26th | 10 AM - 1 PM

HQ - Briar Patch, 27 Main Street, Bangor

A downtown science scavenger hunt! Pick up your sheet/ information at the Briar Patch, get it time-stamped, and go find the science the clues lead you to. Once done, return to the Briar Patch to get your finishing time stamp. The fastest finisher receives a prize, and all who finish will be entered into a drawing for a goodie bag. The hunt has to be completed between 10 am -1 pm.

Audience: all ages

Science Storytime

March 26 | 11 - 11:30 AM

Briar Patch, 27 Main Street, Bangor 

Science Story Time 

3, 2, 1, Action! Fran Hodgkins reads her hilarious yet informative new picture book, In a Patch of Grass, at a special Maine Science Festival storytime at The Briar Patch. 

Audience: all ages 

Mystery Tusk

Sunday, March 26th | 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM

BOOKspace, 48 Columbia St., Bangor

A tusk found in an old, dismantled museum collection led to the excavation of Maine's first and only woolly mammoth remains. It also launched research into the life of an elephant killed in 1816 at Alfred, Maine, that inspired P. T. Barnum to become a circus showman.

Event type: Presentation 

Presenter: Gary Hoyle, Retired Curator of Natural History, Maine State Museum

Moderator:  Gibran Graham, BOOKspace

Recommended Audience: high school and up

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The Buzz About Maine Bees

Sunday, March 26th | 12:30 - 1:30 PM

Dramatic Academy at PTC, 51A Main Street, Bangor

Join us for an enlightening talk about some of the issues we see in Maine around our little buzzing friends and ways that everyday people can help them. You’ll also hear how the sex life of the wild blueberry implemented by hungry Maine bees makes us the top producer of 99% of all the wild blueberries in the country! 

Event type: Forum

Presenters: Jennifer Lund, State Apiarist, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry; Francis Drummond, Professor Emeritus, School of Biology and Ecology, University of Maine

Moderator:  Kate Dickerson, Maine Discovery Museum 

Sponsor: Maine Community College System

Recommended Audience: middle school and up

Science Board Games

Sunday, March 26th | 12:30 - 3:00 PM

Queen City Cinema Club, 128B Main Street, Bangor

What do science, math, innovation, and board games have in common? A lot, actually! Come and enjoy some drop-in gaming at Queen City Cinema Club, hosted by the SnowCon gaming convention crew. From resource management to agriculture to space travel, SnowCon regulars will be available to teach gamers ages middle school and up how to play a curated selection of games to celebrate the Maine Science Festival! 


Event type: Games

Recommended Audience: middle school and up

Blue Keyboard
Science Writing 101

Sunday, March 26th | 1 - 2 PM

Maine Discovery Museum, 74 Main Street, Bangor

A science writing workshop that will help writers and scientists alike break down the basics of a research paper into something comprehensible for a lay audience.

Event type: Workshop

Presenter: Samantha Schipani, University of Maine

Moderator:  Kim Stewart, Maine Discovery Museum

Recommended Audience: high school and up

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Oh, The Horror!!! The intersection of science fact and science in fiction

Sunday, March 26th | 2 - 3 PM

Dramatic Academy at PTC, 51A Main Street, Bangor

In October 2022, the University of Maine Science Librarians set up a display focused on horror fiction and science. Join them as they discuss their STEM in Horror display and how they combined popular fiction and scientific themes to promote engagement with the library and its collections. 


In this workshop, we will lead some activities designed to get attendees thinking about the connections between works of fiction and works of scientific fact. The activities will promote multidisciplinary thinking and building connections across different subject areas. It is useful for librarians, readers, teachers, and scientists trying to find fun ways to communicate their ideas.

Event type: Workshop

Presenters: Christopher Clark, Lindsay Decker, Heather Perrone, Fogler Library, University of Maine

Moderator:  Mollie Cashwell, Cultural Alliance of Maine

Recommended Audience: middle school and up

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Deep Water Mysteries

Sunday, March 26th | 2 - 6 PM

Chimera Coffee, 24 Broad Street, Bangor

Science and art come together to bring snapshots of the ocean biome out of the depths and into the coffee shop. Have questions about what you are looking at? Graduate students in the School of Marine Sciences at the University of Maine will be hosting "after-hours" office hours to answer them and chat about the things that live in the Gulf of Maine and the stories they can tell us about ocean acidification, the carbon cycle, changing temperatures, and more. Or just come check out the art and enjoy a cup of coffee!

Chimera Coffee will generously have complimentary self-serve coffee and cookies available as well as their normal menu for purchase. 

Event type: Art exhibit

Presenters: Megan Switzer (artist); Graduate students, School of Marine Sciences, University of Maine

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