Beachcombers’ Rest Nature Center will be open for its 12th season on Tuesdays through Saturdays July 7 to August 29 from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (weather permitting). Located in a small room in the pavilion at Pemaquid Beach Park, the nature center is full of hands-on adventures in learning. Beachcombers’ Rest was initiated in 2003 as a collaboration between Pemaquid Watershed Association (PWA) and the Town of Bristol. Along the 4,500 miles of Maine coastline, there are only three seaside nature centers, and Beachcombers’ Rest is the only one on a sandy beach, so it is a unique and special place.
One wall of the nature center is covered with a timetable of the ancient history of Pemaquid Beach, and another wall features photographs taken by a diver showing the changes in sea inhabitants as the tidal water depths increase from 1 to 60 feet. There is a lending library of books about local and beach history, as well as birding guides and children’s books. Child-friendly microscopes help the littlest of visitors view the glacier-created white sand, native aquatic creatures, and native plants. There will be a touch tank from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. every Tuesday courtesy of the Gulf of Maine Foundation and Darling Marine Center and supported by the Edward A. Myers Marine Conservation Fund. There will be a weekly Friday workshop from 10:30 a.m. to noon and two Saturday programs (August 1 diving show-n-tell and August 8 Beachscapes Contest). Visit www.pemaquidwatershed.org for the full schedule of summer programming at Beachcombers’ Rest.
To reach Pemaquid Beach Park, from Damariscotta take the Bristol Road (State Rte 130) about 12 miles. Take the first right about 50 yards after the Fire Department (and just before Hanna’s Service Station) onto Snowball Hill Road. Travel 9/10ths of a mile. At the bottom of the hill, on the left, there is a sign for the entrance to the Park. Nature Center visitors must pay the Town’s admission fee to Pemaquid Beach Park. FMI on the Nature Center, call Pemaquid Watershed Association at (207) 563-2196.