In 2000, a dam removal project began on the East Machias River in downtown East Machias. This was the sown seed of something that would root deeply into the banks of the East Machias, and grow a program that has brought quite a bit of change to the Downeast Salmon Federation, and the Atlantic salmon restoration program in Downeast Maine. As this major collaborative project came to fruition, the dam was gone, but the electric generating facility remained. An eyesore and no longer serving its intended purpose, something had to be done with the vacant building. With a vision in mind for the riverside facility, the Downeast Salmon Federation stepped in and acquired the building and began its renovation. Much like the Pleasant River Hatchery and Wild Salmon Resource Center in Columbia Falls, the idea was to turn this old Bangor Hydro Electric Facility into a community building focused on research, education and community involvement, and use its convenient riverside location to run a river-specific hatchery. After many years of hard work from community members and DSF staff and board, grant funding, and individual donations, the hydro facility has truly transformed into a state of the art conservation hatchery and visitors center called the East Machias Aquatic Research Center (EMARC). Renovations are still being made to EMARC, including the addition of classroom, laboratory, and meeting space on the second floor. When complete, EMARC will serve as a hub for education and research in Downeast Maine.
13 Willow St. East Machias, ME 04630