General Public Programs

The Great Bay Discovery Center hosts a variety of programs for the general public throughout the year. Each is designed to help you and your family discover the unique natural and cultural resources of the Great Bay Estuary.

Bayventures for Kids

Are you looking for an outdoor estuary adventure for your children? Look no further. Bayventures is an environmental education program series based at the Great Bay Discovery Center in the summer and winter (bundle up!)

Summer Bayventures: Summer Bayventures are full day programs (wednesdays 9:30-3:00) designed for children entering 3rd-6th grade in the coming year.  Kids will spend the majority of the time outside, and each week has a theme. Registration for summer 2024 will be open soon and we will post links here.

Jr. Bayventure programs follow weekly themes of Bayventures, but are half day programs (Fridays 9:30-12:00) designed for children entering 1st-4th grade in the coming school year.  Registration is open, please use the links below to register for each desired date.  Payment at the time of registration is required

Summer 2024 Bayventures:
July 10th
July 17th
July 24th
July 31st
August 7th
August 14th

Summer 2024 Jr Bayventures:
July 12th
July 19th
July 26th
August 2nd
August 9th
August 16th

Once you sign up at the above links we will send you an invoice.  Your spot is temporarily held after sign up, but is not confirmed until we receive payment. Please contact Beth with questions.

Winter Bayventures: Children in first through sixth grades can enjoy a day of exploring wildlife signs, bird feeding, how maple syrup is made, Native American winter survival techniques, and more. Held during the week of February Winter Vacation or winter Teacher Workshop Days.  Registration is required and the cost may vary depending on the program.

Once you sign up at the above links we will send you an invoice.  Your spot is temporarily held after sign up, but is not confirmed until we receive payment.  Contact Beth with questions.

Once Upon an Estuary for Kids

Children aged two to five will love these hands-on, outdoor programs at our Great Bay Discovery Center. Registration is required, cost: $5/child (no fee for parents/guardians). All children must be accompanied by an adult.

child looking at fallen tree

  • Once Upon a Summer Estuary: On select Thursdays in July and August, 9:30 to 11am. Children registered for this series will listen to a story, play a game, and make a craft that follows the weekly theme of the older children’s Bayventures summer program.  Of course snacks are included! Registration is required, dates, themes, and links will be online in early spring.

Contact Tess with questions.

Winter Bayview Lectures

Learn something new while engaged in an adult lecture series, featuring local presenters discussing a variety of issues relevant to the Great Bay Estuary and its history. These free programs are open to the public and generally held 2-3pm on select winter weekdays, no registration required.   Some past lectures were recorded and can be found on our YouTube Channel.  We hope to also record the 2024 lectures.

2024 Lectures:

January 19th, 2-3pm, Hugh Gregg Center
Josh Carloni with NH Fish & Game
Lobsters in a Changing Environment

February 7th, 2-3pm, Hugh Gregg Center (Zoom ONLY)
Laura Brown with Fox Point Oysters
Oyster farming and restoration in Great Bay and Little Bay

March 27th, 2-3pm, Hugh Gregg Center or Urban Forestry Center-we will update social media closer to the lecture date
Jason Goldstein with Wells NERR and Chris Peter with Great Bay NERR
Rise of the Blue Crabs

April 22nd, 2-3pm, Hugh Gregg Center
Chris Chabot with Plymouth State and Win Watson from UNH
The Story of Horseshoe Crabs
This public lecture will be followed by a volunteer training for horseshoe crab monitoring volunteers.  Registration for the training is required by emailing

Please see our Calendar of Events page for details about scheduled programs, and also check our social media for any last minute updates (@GreatBayNERR). Contact Melissa with questions.

Baywalks-Guided Public Programs

Everyone can have fun searching for mud snails, holding a horseshoe crab, or watching a flounder swim! Baywalks are perfect for small groups, including summer camps, Scout troops, senior citizen groups, and more. Your program can be tailored to meet your group’s needs, but generally includes a guided exploration of our waterfront and a facilitated experience at our Discovery Tank.

A staff member or experienced volunteer educator will be your guide during this interactive interpretive experience. Designed for a minimum of 8 participants, a two-week advanced registration is required.  Contact te to schedule a program.

Program Cost:

1-8 people @ $50.00 group rate

9-16 people @ $100.00 group rate

17-24 people @ $150.00 group rate

Guided Kayak Tours

Kayak prow at shoreline

Kayak tours are on hold until further notice.  If we are able to host tours again, below is some information about what you can expect.

Join the Great Bay Discovery Center’s Interpretive Naturalists as they guide you through the fascinating habitats of the Great Bay Estuary. Explore secluded tidal creeks, rocky shores and salt marsh. Watch osprey dive for fish and herons as they gracefully glide across the water.

Each two- to four-hour experience includes basic instruction on how to safely enter and exit your kayak and paddling techniques and strokes. All kayaks, necessary equipment, and safety items are included, but you may use your own kayaks if you prefer.

While paddling experience is not necessary, kayaking is a moderate to vigorous activity and you will spend approximately up to two hours on the water. The remainder of your time will be spent receiving instruction, assisting guides in loading and unloading boats, and washing down and putting away equipment at the end of your paddle. We look forward to your enthusiastic participation from start to finish!

Contact Kelle Loughlin for more information.

Get in Touch with Us

There are many education and resources at the Great Bay Reserve. Please contact us if you have questions.