Stimulation - Knowledge - Interaction - Fun
June 2021 Newsletter

Dear Members and Friends,

Spring classes are winding down and summer activities on MDI are heating up. This year, ASC board member elections will again be held electronically. All current members are eligible to vote - read more below. You'll also find a recap of the members art show with links to the reception and slide show, information about the newly forming Racial Justice Book Group(s), some class photos, and a new installment of the Geology Corner.

If you're interested in gardening and native plants check out Val Libby's excellent presentation on Naturalizing Your Landscape.

Wednesday, September 8th
Acadia Senior College 20th Anniversary Celebration
Camp Beech Cliff
Take good care, get outside, and stay in touch,

Janice Kenyon, ASC Administrator
Art Show Recap

Our annual Art Show at the Northeast Harbor Library concluded last month and showcased over 30 talented artists. If you didn't get a chance to visit the show in person you can still see the sneak preview slide show (4 minutes). I regret not capturing everyone's work in the sneak preview - I apologize if your pieces were not included in the video.

You can also watch our virtual cocktail demonstration with Casey Harmon.

Thank you to all the organizers and artists who participated:
Judith Bradshaw Brown
Judith Burger-Gossart
Bonnie Chase
Liz Cutler
Linda Dunn
Candy Emlen
Thayer Fanazick
Bill Fanazick
Jean Forbes
Carol Friedman
Lydia Goetze
Gabrielle Graham
Kathleen Hall
Rini Hunter
Jacque Jacobs
Ellen Kappes
Susan Lerner
Laney Lloyd
David Manski
Rick Osann
Linda Paine
Kay Reeve
Sydney Roberts
Sid Salvatore
Jeanne Seronde Perkins
Marion Smith
Roberta Sharp
Roberta Sprague
Steven Valleau
Jim Vekasi
Mary Vekasi
Melita Westerlund
Ellen Kappes
Roberta Sharp
Sid Salvatore

As we did last year, Acadia Senior College will again elect Board Members and Officers by electronic vote. To vote, your ASC membership must be current as of June 9, 2021. Please contact the office if you are unsure of your membership status.

The official notice of the 2021 Annual General Meeting and brief biographies for proposed board members are available here:

Election results for ASC Board Members and Officers will be posted after June 9th. Meanwhile, if you have not voted and wish to do so, the deadline for electronic voting is 4:00 p.m. on June 9, 2021.

Racial Justice Book Group(s) Forming

Located in the northeast tip of the country and with an overwhelmingly white membership, Acadia Senior College was challenged to examine how we fit into the now spotlighted reality of systemic racism revealed daily in the newspapers, television, radio, and on our streets. While the underlying racism on which our country was founded and which has been a basic underpinning of the lives of so many Americans is certainly not new, those of us whose lives have been lived with the shield of white privilege need to consider our positions, actions and even unconscious biases.
The real issue is how. How do we enhance and expand our understanding and vision and how can we be even a small part of the work needed for change?
The Racial Justice Committee formed by the Board of ASC spent about two months of intense work trying to come up with at least some ways in which ASC can be part of the movement toward racial justice. We have suggested ideas for books, events, movies, lectures, new courses, discussion groups and book groups to augment what ASC has traditionally done to promote our knowledge and vision of the world. These lists will be added to our website and updated as new ideas are put forth. We intend for them to be ongoing and open to a wide range of new ideas.
The Racial Justice Book Group(s) is one of the new activities suggested by the committee. The group or groups will meet once a month, be flexible and fluid, and will each have a facilitator to start the process. Each group will be limited to eight people and will meet in person, so everyone will need to be vaccinated. You must be an ASC member to join a group.
The first two basic readings will be Ibram X. Kendi’s How to be an Antiracist and Heather McGhee’s The Sum of Us. After having these two works in common to all groups, further readings will be chosen by the group itself. The basic aim of the readings is to stimulate discussion, often probably quite personal, of how we are a part of the underlying systemic racism in our country, how we can enlighten ourselves, and how new understanding may lead to change. ASC will reimburse participants for the first two books, after which the groups will be responsible for the purchase of the books they choose.

     I, Too
by Langston Hughes
I too, sing America
I am the darker brother
They send me to eat in the kitchen when company comes
But I laugh and eat well and grow strong
Tomorrow, I'll be at the table when company comes
Nobody'll dare say to me, "Eat in the kitchen"
They'll see how beautiful we are and be ashamed
I, too, am America
Those who are interested should call Janice Kenyon at (207) 288-9500 or email An initial Zoom meeting, facilitated by Ellen Dohmen, will be held on Thursday, June 17th at 10:30 a.m. for the purpose of organizing the group(s) and discussing the particulars. The groups shall start meeting in person in the fall, after our summer visitors, activities, and play!
We will work “to see how beautiful”!

Our spring appeal letter was mailed in May. Over this last challenging year we were able to offer a remarkable number of programs - 25 online classes, 3 outdoor courses, and 19 virtual presentations. We hope you will consider a donation to ensure we can continue to serve you well.

You can donate online, or by mail (PO Box 475, Southwest Harbor, ME 04679). Or, perhaps consider becoming a monthly donor to help us fulfill our mission of providing intellectual stimulation, knowledge, interaction, and fun.
Fall 2021 Courses

Yes, summer is just about to begin, but the Curriculum Committee is busy finalizing the fall course line up with a great selection of interesting classes. We plan to offer some classes in-person (hurray!), but of course we'll stay flexible in case things change.

Once again our fall brochure will be available online - we will not be mailing a printed brochure. Look for the class descriptions and online brochure on our website towards the end of June. You will also receive an email notification when the courses have been posted.

Online registration opens on July 14th at 10:00 a.m.
Geology Corner - Younger Intrusions and Tectonic Activity

By Ruth and Duane Braun

Note: this is the 5th in a series of articles on the Geology of Mount Desert Island. Thank you Ruth and Duane! You can read the previous installments in past newsletters on our Newsletters page.

There are three intrusions on Mount Desert Island that are younger than the activity that occurred around 420 million years ago – the Seawall Granite, the Northeast Creek Granite and the Baker Island Granite. These intrusions probably occurred around 360 to 340 million years ago. There are several suggestions as to the cause of these intrusions. The collision of a continental slice – Meguma (Nova Scotia today) with North America could have supplied the energy needed to cause crustal melting. Other suggestions include a continuation of activity responsible for the original volcanism around 420 million years ago.

Whatever the cause, it resulted in injections of new magma and the fracturing and tilting of the old Cadillac magma chamber. This tilting resulted in the preservation of the Bar Harbor Formation on the east side of the Island and the exposure of the bottom of the Cadillac magma chamber on the west side of the island.

The Seawall Granite can be seen at Seawall Pond. This is an unusual granite in that it contains mineral grains of hematite – the reddish flecks seen in the granite. Dating the granite has been a problem because of the amount of lead also found. The lead has substituted in the lattice of the feldspar to produce aquamarine (green blue) colored feldspar – amazonite.
Above - Seawall Granite with blue-green feldspar (amazonte)
The Northeast Creek Granite found on the north side of the island is a pink medium grained granite. In places it contains large ivory colored feldspar phenocrysts.

The Baker Island Granite is found on Baker Island and is a pink granite with northeast orientation of biotite grains.

About 270 – 255 million years ago the supercontinent of Gondwana collided with North America to form the supercontinent of Pangaea. This collision crumpled up a high mountain range near what is now the edge of North America. MDI was on the northwestern flank of that range and was uplifted and fractured more at that time.

Around 240 million years ago Pangaea began to breakup. The rifting of the supercontinent and the opening of the Atlantic Ocean resulted in down-faulted basins that are today the Gulf of Maine and the Bay of Fundy.

From that time to the present, MDI has not been significantly affected by tectonic activity but has endured more than 200 million years of weathering and stream erosion. These processes have removed about 2 miles of rock exposing the granite that formed deep in the old magma chambers. The Rocky Mountain-like range of mountains resulting from the earlier tectonic activity was eroded down to the present low mountain, rolling hill landscape.

The final event was the arrival of the continental glaciers crossing MDI and the Gulf of Maine during the last one million years or so.
Above - Cross section of the Island showing intrusions

Swg - Southwest Harbor Granite
CMg - Cadillac Mountain Granite
Lg - Last gabbro intrusion
Sg - Somesville Granite
Civ - Cranberry Island Volcanics
Photo Gallery

Below are some photos from Michael Good's Ornithology class and Shira Singer's Designing the Surface class, plus one image of the Curriculum Committee meeting in person for the first time in over a year! Photo credits - Sydney Roberts, Linda Dunn, and Astri Brooks.

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