learning how to carve

Learn & Do

carving tools

Online Resources

We have had to cancel April programs and classes to ensure the health and safety of our members, community and staff. We're looking forward to getting our programs up and running and having the museum full of people again as soon as possible.

In the meantime, we are putting resources online, including online art lessons, nature resources, and more. Visit our NEWS page for a list of online resources.

Philosophy of programming

Following in the footsteps of Wendell Gilley, we endeavor to help people make connections to art and nature, and to their own creativity. The programs we offer explore nature and the arts, and offer many opportunities for learning and creativity for all ages.

Many people reflect fondly on memories of dropping by and spending time with Wendell in his studio, watching him carve and learning from him. At the museum, you can visit with our Master Carver Steven Valleau (read his bio here), who has been carving at the Gilley for over 30 years. You can share Steve's passion for birds and learn about carving (maybe even try your hand at it), and sign up for one of our many creative classes or learning programs. 

Along with a full-time artist on staff, we also bring in local artists, educators, and experts in natural history and the environment for special programs. Our events page lists all of our upcoming activities. If you are interested in learning to carve, you can sign up for a lesson or a lifetime; short and long workshops and a carving club are offered. Teachers and youth group leaders are welcome to schedule art and natural history programs year-round.

Types of activities offered


Watch Steve, or one of our Member carvers at work or enroll in a workshop yourself.

Special programs

Throughout the year, the Museum staff works with schools and other institutions to create customized tours and workshops.

Groups info

School groups

We welome school groups.

Private functions

The Gilley Workshop Wing is offered as a meeting place for non-profit groups for a basic fee of $75.00. The space includes a kitchen, work-style tables, chairs, and an A/V system with a large television and microphone for presentations. Rates for private and business functions and/or use of other galleries are negotiable.


If your group is unable to visit the Museum, outreach programs can sometimes be arranged. Current mileage rate of .50/mile applies. Program rates vary.

The Museum is open to groups by appointment, year-round. For more information, or to schedule a tour or program, please call us at (207) 244-7555 or email info@wendellgilleymuseum.org.

Learn & Do Events

For a complete list of all upcoming events: Events page

ONLINE Program: Collage inspired by Ashley Bryan's Beautiful Blackbird

April 7 - August 31, 2020

This workshop has been moved ONLINE. Content available at this website on MONDAY, APRIL 6. 

Join artist Erika Rosso to make colorful collages, inspired by the book Beautiful Blackbird by Ashley Bryan at home. Collage is an ideal art to work on at home, is super fun, and has endless possibilities for creativity. Online content includes a video lesson with Erika and Sienna Rosso, video of Ashley Bryan reading Beautiful Blackbirds, other examples of collage projects, and information about how to contact us if you need supplies. 

info@wendellgilleymuseum.org or 244-7555.

Programs going ONLINE

April 7 - August 31, 2020

Sadly, we have had to cancel our April and May program and push back our opening date. Check the NEWS section for updates on programs and opening times. Some of our programs have been moved online, and we have lots of content related to Birds, Nature and Art, including fun and creative art and nature projects. Check our NEWS page for all the details. 

Acadia Birding Festival - Author Talk by Jim Wright: Carroll Tyson, Wendell Gilley and the Real James Bond

May 29, 2020, 10:30 am - 11:30 pm

A private talk by author Jim Wright in partnership with the Acadia Birding Festival. May 29 from 10:30 - 11:30am. Private event - registration for the Acadia Birding Festival required - click here for info.

RESCHEDULED for August. Creating Foam Prints with Sherrie York

August 18, 2020, 12:00 - 2:00 pm

Join us August 18 (rescheduled from April 11) to make wonderful bird prints using simple materials and techniques - foam and line. Appropriate for all ages; under 8 should have supervision. Space is limited. Registration is required at: 207 244-777 or info@wendellgilleymuseum.org. 

wooden bird carvings