All Aboard Melinda Ann!
Maine COLA's Summer Boat Programs with the Maine Lakes Conservancy Institute
What is the Maine Lakes Conservancy Institute?
The Maine Lakes Conservancy Institute (MLCI), formerly an independent nonprofit organization, now is the education division of the Maine Congress of Lake Associations (Maine COLA). The merger of our organizations improves Maine COLA's capacity to engage both children and adults in understanding, preserving, and sustaining the value of Maine lakes and the communities that depend on them.
MLCI Summer Programs
Our summer programs are available to community groups, lake associations, summer camps and other organizations wanting to involve the public in a fun and educational day on the water. As Melinda Ann cruises, we investigate your lake and engage passengers in activities that raise their awareness, increase their appreciation and deepen their knowledge of how lakes work. We supply the boat, the science equipment, and the expertise.
- Involve children and adults in shared learning
- Provide a tangible benefit for your members
- Use the program as a membership recruitment tool for your organization
- Motivate your members to be more involved with your organization as their understanding and appreciation of lake issues increases
- Fundraise for your organization
- Add to, or jump-start, your educational initiatives with a proven curriculum and expertise
Scientific Equipment Provided
- Secchi Disk: measures water clarity
- Aqua-Scope: monitors water clarity
- Plankton Tow: collects zooplankton
- Ken-a-Vision: Flat-screen monitor shows magnified images of microscopic organisms in the lake
- Benthic Dredge: collects samples from the lake bottom
- Water Column Sampler: takes water samples from various depths
- Dissolved Oxygen Probe: compares oxygen levels at different depths
- ROV: Remote Operated Vehicle, with an underwater camera
Tips for Planning Your Organization's Boat Trip
- Budget 2 hours per trip for 2 trips in a day
- Budget 1.5 hours per trip for up to 3 trips in a day
- Plan for 15-20 minutes between programs for staff to reorganize gear
- Plan on 12-13 passengers per trip (15 total including 2 MLCI staff members)
- Create a schedule to accomodate the number of trips your organization requires
- Create a sign-up/passenger list so participants know the time of their departure and return
- Personal Floatation Devices (PDFs) ranging from small adult to extra-large adult are provided. Small children should bring their own PFDs to ensure proper fit.
- The combined length of our boat trailer and Suburban is approximately 52 feet. Therefore, we prefer to launch from boat ramps designed by the State of Maine.
- If a boat ramp has not been designed by the State, a MLCI staff member must make a visual confirmation that the ram can be used by our boat and trailer.
- If you are planning a multiple day event on the same lake, it is extremely helpful if you can find a willing person to dock the boat overnight.
2011 rates are as follows: $800 for one day and $1200 for two days. If your organization is able to find a volunteer to house MLCI staff overnight, we can deduct $200 from the price, making the cost for two days just $1000. Past lake association clients have paid from existing funds, sought contributions from local businesses and/or other supporters, or charged a per-person rate. In fact, some organizations have made money from our visit!
We hope that this summary has convinced you of the benefits a visit from the Melinda Ann can bring to your lake. If you have further questions, please contact our Lake Educator, Phil Mulville at (508) 971-2496.
Melinda Ann is an educational outreach program of the Maine Congress of Lake Associations