VCS middle schoolers take a trip down the road to witness historic event

Matt Streeter, one of the key people on the alewife project, tells students about ecological changes that have occurred at the old Mill site. (photo by Gillian Lalime)

by Gillian Lalime

On Friday, May 6, students from the VCS middle school took a field trip following the Outlet Stream that runs from China Lake into the Kennebec River. This educational experience was orchestrated through a collaboration of Brian Stanley, librarian at the Vassalboro Public Library, and Melora Norman, at Vassalboro Community School, with the chosen topic of Alewives. Students visited the Box Mill, in North Vassalboro, and the Masse Mill, in East Vassalboro, to learn about the seasonal migration of these fish as well as historic and ecological impacts of the run. Over the last ten years organizations including Maine Fish and Wildlife and Maine Rivers have worked to restore the annual alewive’s run by removing unused dams and creating fish passages. The year 2022 marks an historic event of the alewive’s unobstructed route to China Lake, where they will spawn for the first time in over 200 years.

Middle school students sit in a circle while Vassalboro community member, Holly Weidner, leads a discussion about indigenous history of the land on which East Vassalboro’s Masse Mill is located. (photo by Gillian Lalime)

CORRECTION: Previously, the caption on the photo above referred to Holly Weidner as being from the Vassalboro Historical Society. She is not a part of VHS. The caption has been updated.

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