Save the Date! The 2016 Annual Auction is coming soon!

Join the Museum & Theatre from 6 – 10pm on May 13, 2016 at the Portland Company on Fore Street in Portland for an evening of great company, delicious food and drink, and terrific auction items! We’ll be shaking things up a bit this year and we would love to have you join us as a guest, donor, or sponsor for what we hope will be our best event yet!

This year’s theme is “Every Child is an Artist” and to celebrate, we’ll be featuring children’s art as part of our art auction. Of course we’ll also have all the fabulous live and silent auction items our guests have come to expect.

We’re also thrilled to announce that our honorary chairs for Auction 2016 are Chris and Lori Van Dusen. Chris is a nationally recognized children’s book author and illustrator who lives here in Maine with his wife Lori. His first book, Down to the Sea with Mr. Magee, was the inspiration for our outdoor adventure exhibit and his book, Circus Ship, will be adapted for the stage by our own Reba Short and produced here at the Museum & Theatre in April, 2016.

Stay tuned for details on Auction 2016. Tickets ($50 per person/$450 for a block of 10) will be on sale in March, and sponsorships are available now!

For information on sponsorships, or to donate and item to the auction, contact the Development department at development@kitetails.org or (207) 828-1234 ext. 242.

11312903_10153397833421579_63063849469802319_o

11312891_10153397833546579_4161304713411127173_o

Our Fiscal Year 2015 Annual Report Is Now Online!

The Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine annual report for fiscal year 2015 is here. Thank you to all of our donors, business members, sponsors, members, volunteers, and visitors for making this one of our best years yet!

Click here to download a pdf copy from our website.

5th Annual 5% Day at Whole Foods Market on March 18th

Join our staff and volunteers as the Children’s Museum & Theatre takes over Whole Foods Market on Wednesday, March 18 for 5% Day!

Okay, we’re not actually taking over, but we will be on site all day to meet and greet customers, give out information about the Museum & Theatre and work on some fun, free craft projects. We’ll also be giving away four sets of free admission passes!

“We are so grateful to Whole Foods Market for their continued support of the Museum & Theatre,” said Executive Director, Suzanne Olson. “They have been a wonderful partner and helped us to maintain our commitment to serving our community by helping children and families make smart, healthy food choices.”

Whole Foods Market has been a major sponsor of the Museum & Theatre since 2010 and the exhibit they underwrite, the Our Town Market, is one of our most popular attractions. Every day, children “drive” to the bank to pick up some cash, pick out fresh seafood and milk among other pretend groceries at the Market, and take turns playing cashier and customer. In addition to being a place for endless daily fun, the tiny Whole Foods Market inside the museum encourages children to count, sort by size, quantity and color, and make healthy food choices as they play.

Thanks, Whole Foods Market, for helping to inspire five years of fun and learning at the Museum & Theatre, and for hosting 5% Day! We’ll be at Whole Foods Market in our red aprons throughout the day on March 18th (if you see us, come say hi!), but 5% Day lasts through the store’s open hours: 8am to 10pm. Every purchase that day, from a full pantry to a quick snack, helps us to provide top quality educational experiences every day at CMTM.

Whole Foods Market is located at 2 Somerset Street in Portland, just off of Franklin Arterial.

Save the Date – Annual Auction 2015

Save the date!

2015 Annual Auction
Friday, May 8, 2015 from 6-10pm
Holiday Inn by the Bay
88 Spring Street, Portland

Tickets will be available March 30th.

For more information about Auction 2015, including sponsorship opportunities, making a donation, or volunteering for the auction committee, please contact Alicia Gaudet at (207) 828-1234 x242 or alicia@kitetails.org.

All proceeds from the Annual Auction benefit the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine’s educational exhibits, programming and theatre productions. It also supports families in need through our scholarship membership program.

Our Favorite Pizza Party of the Year on July 1st

We are so thrilled to announce one of our favorite yearly benefit events has gotten that much better with a new twist.

Please join us on Tuesday July 1st at Flatbread Company, located at 72 Commercial Street in Portland. For those of you who have never been, Flatbread Company’s homemade and handmade aesthetic is very similar to our own here at the Museum; use the best of what’s around, prepare it with thoughtfulness and ingenuity, and present with a smile.

Their dressed-down style, family-forward atmosphere, and waterfront location are perfect for a summer dinner, and we’ll be dining from 5pm – 10pm.

Flatbread is generously donating a portion of sales of every pizza sold to the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine. If you like their pizza as much as we do, you understand how exciting this is for us!

And, the twist? That night, we’ll announce a limited-time-only, special thank you gift for individuals and families who sign up for new Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine memberships this summer.

The Smallest Whole Foods Market & Our 5% Day

Whole Foods

Photo by Kaitlynn Perrault

Welcome to the smallest Whole Foods Market in the entire company!  Our exhibit in the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine may be small on space (a mere 211 sq ft!) but it is big on experience.  The colors and chalkboards were specifically chosen to mimic our Portland store, but in a miniature size.

I began my career as the Marketing Team Leader at the Portland store in 2007 when the store opened.  When I was dreaming up my marketing action plan, I secretly desired to have the grocery space at the CMTM but it was currently being utilized by another sponsor.  Imagine my surprise when two years later, I received a call from the Museum that the space is available and would Whole Foods Market like to sponsor it?  YES, PLEASE!!!

Several Portland team members were involved in the refurbishing of the space to have it resemble the Portland store; painting, ordering supplies, illustrating the chalkboards and imagining how the space would be best utilized. We also requested help from our regional décor team to find cute items (like the banana and the strawberry) to decorate the walls with and create a bench for parents to sit on while their kids “shopped”. One of our suppliers, Melissa & Doug had the most perfect kid-friendly faux fruit and veggies for our produce department. And the bakery? What can I say? I always want to chomp on one of those faux croissants.

Jocelyn Clark 12-2-11 05

Photo by Olivia Birdsall

One of our core values is to satisfy and delight our customers.  At The Children’s Museum& Theatre of Maine, we have an opportunity to satisfy even the smallest and youngest with imagination and the chance to “shop” and “work” in a real grocery store. You can’t imagine how satisfying and delightful this is for us!

Don’t forget to shop at our real store, located at 2 Somerset Street on Tuesday, June 3rd when we will give 5% of the day’s net sales to the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine!

Please visit our website to learn more about what’s happening at our Portland store: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/portland-me

Barbara Gulino is the Marketing Team Leader for Whole Foods Market – Portland.  They are proud to provide charitable giving and community support to organizations that improve the lives of Maine citizens. 

Auction 2014: Thank You!

With beautiful views of the harbor, Ocean Gateway once again provided a fantastic location for our annual Auction. The biggest single fundraising event of the year, our Auction has long been a Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine tradition, bringing together over 350 friends of the organization to support our exhibits, theatre productions, family in need admissions and educational programming.

With great thanks to Auction Chair Dawn Gerding and the Auction Committee, everyone worked hard to provide hundreds of items available for bid on Friday, May 2nd. The evening was divided into two parts: attendees began arriving at 6:00pm for our Silent Auction, many of whom stayed for the Live Auction which ran from 9:00-10:00pm and concluded the event. Categories of items and gift certificates in the Silent Auction included For Her, For Him, Restaurants & Gourmet Foods and Fine Art – most of the items from which came from generous local establishments and artisans. Several Scholarship Memberships were bought throughout the evening as well, allowing us to continue providing free memberships to local families in need, as we take great pride in being available as a resource to all families in Portland and beyond.

Black Tie Catering provided a fantastic spread and two cash bars for Auction-goers and The Cookie Jar – of Cape Elizabeth – generously donated desserts for the evening, enjoyed while the evening shifted from the Silent to the Live Auction. Staff and volunteers worked hard from 8:30 in the morning until midnight – many thanks to Whole Foods Market, Anthony’s Italian Kitchen and Portland House of Pizza for providing food for our hard-working volunteers!

Many thanks to our Auction sponsors, Pierce Atwood LLP, MEMIC, WEX, Spectrum Medical Group and Berlin City Motor Group for making the Auction a remarkable evening, and to our generous in-kind and cash donors Baker Newman Noyes, Burr Signs, Deb Deatrick & Scott Vile, Steve & Christine Kelly, Moonlighting Production Services, The Cookie Jar, Pine State Services, Skelton, Taintor & Abbott and Thomaston Place Auction Galleries for helping to make the Auction a great success.

We thank our Board for their unyielding support – it was wonderful to see our Board Members on Auction night; we were also pleased to see past sponsors and members of the Board who continue to support our organization and our mission as we continue to provide unparalleled services in early childhood, science, multicultural and arts education within our broad community.

With a beautiful, picturesque spring Maine evening as a background, staff, Board, volunteers, Auction committee and Auction-goers all came together for a highly enjoyable event. All in all, the Auction was a great success – thank you to all who attended and to all who continue to support us here at the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine.

Tuesday night is pizza night!

Jamie Andrew and some young visitors worked together to create this neat banner - it's now hanging at Flatbread Company!

Looking for something to do with the kids this week? Need to take a break from the kitchen? Well, we can take care of both! Join us tomorrow, May 11th at Flatbread Company in Portland for a benefit night to support the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine! For every pizza sold that night, Flatbread Company will donate $3.50 to the Museum & Theatre. All the proceeds we raise that night will directly support the educational exhibits, programs and theatre productions that our members and visitors have come to love. This benefit will also help support local families in need with year-long family memberships to the Museum & Theatre. Treat the kids to a dinner they’ll love, plus face painting and a raffle! You won’t want to miss this fun-filled event! So, bring your friends and family, enjoy some great pizza and give back to your favorite community resource: Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine! I hope to see you there!

 WHEN: Tuesday, May 11th, 5-9 p.m.

WHERE: Flatbread Company, 72 Commercial Street, Portland

Shop for a cause (my personal favorite) at Whole Foods!

5% for the Museum & Theatre at Whole Foods on Wednesday

Help us spread the word. Visit us on Facebook to share this picture with your friends!

Breaking news!  On Wednesday, April 7th, Whole Foods Market in Portland (on Somerset Street, just off Franklin Arterial) will donate 5% of the day’s net sales to the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine!

Whether you buy a week’s worth of groceries or just stop in to pick up some takeout for dinner, a portion of the proceeds will ultimately help us provide educational exhibits, programs and productions to Maine families.

I’m making my shopping list already – see you Wednesday at the salad bar (or the bakery…)!

Visit our Facebook page to help spread the word about this awesome fundraiser: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/Portland-ME/Childrens-Museum-Theatre-of-Maine/91981131578?ref=ts