Maine childrens’ museums ‘on very, very unsteady ground’ due to pandemic

Coastal Children’s Museum joins newly-formed consortium

Wed, 06/17/2020 - 1:15pm

    ROCKLAND — This past week a new union has been formed of all the children's museums in the Maine. The Coastal Children’s Museum in Rockland is now a member of the newly formed “Children’s Museums of Maine Consortium.'. 

    Directors of all of Maine’s children's museum met virtually to discuss the issues facing individual museums brought on by the current COVID-19 crisis.

    “Besides the obvious question of when and if we will be able to open in the near future, our gathering brought forth ideas on how to open safely,” said The Coastal Children’s Museum, in a news release.

    Each participant shared what their research showed on how to address the issue of transmission of the virus. Transmission of the virus is a very large issue facing everyone since spaces and exhibits are designed to encourage children to touch and explore, according to CCM. 

    Besides the virus dilemma, discussions also included the other pressing issue brought on by the shut down, fiscal management, which is plaguing all of the children’s museums. Funding for museums are usually handled with admission fees, party fees, donations and grants. All of the museums are struggling with this issue currently, according to CCM. There is no money coming in from admissions or parties and many donors and grants are now  focused on funding more life saving issues. 

    “That leaves our museums on very, very unsteady ground,” said the organization. “Hopefully this alliance will help us to help each other through this labyrinth of this uncertainty. Our collective vision, when we finally get to the end of this mysterious journey, will safely be able to foster new and exciting ideas to help better enrich the lives of the children of Maine. In the meantime, the Coastal Children's Museum in Rockland is working refurbishing our exhibits and building.”


    FMI: Contact Gayle Bedigian, President of the Board, Coastal Children's Museum, 75 Mechanic St Rockland, Maine 04841