Marine Biological Laboratory To Celebrate 125th Anniversary

For Immediate Release
June 14, 2013

Contact: Gina Hebert

Lillie AuditoriumWoods Hole, MA – The Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) will celebrate its 125th anniversary this summer with a series of events commemorating the milestone.  The theme of the anniversary is “Celebrating the Next Generation.”Featured events include an Anniversary Concert with Curtis On Tour, a program of the Philadelphia-based Curtis Institute of Music, on July 7, Discovery Day, a free family science fair and party on July 17, the anniversary of the laboratory’s dedication in 1888, and a tour of Penikese Island with MBL Ecosystems Center Director, Christopher Neill and MBL history expert Garland Allen, Professor of Biology at Washington University.

The MBL was founded in 1888 as an independent institution for teaching and research. Primarily a summer laboratory in its early years, today a corps of more than 270 scientists and support personnel pursue biology, biomedicine, and environmental science research year-round.  They are joined each year by more than 300 visiting scientists, summer staff, and research associates from hundreds of institutions around the world.

Each year the MBL trains more than 550 students as part of its advanced, laboratory-based education program. Educational programs also include undergraduate and independent research, graduate training, the Brown-MBL Graduate Program in Biological and Environmental Sciences, postdoctoral training, and community continuing education programs.

“MBL scientists have helped drive scientific discovery since the laboratory’s founding in 1888,” said Joan V. Ruderman, MBL President and Director. “We invite the community to join us this summer as we celebrate our past and look toward our future.”

The MBL has launched a website in honor of the anniversary, featuring an event calendar, anecdotes from the past and present, as well as a place for people to share their birthday greetings. MBL fans are also encouraged to contribute to the MBL Community Archives Project, a community-generated collection of photographs, video reminiscences, and science memorabilia that will take place throughout the summer.  Contributed items and stories will become a part of the History of the MBL website.

A full list of MBL Anniversary celebration events is below.

MBL 125th Anniversary Events

May 28 – August 23: MBL Community Archives Intake Studio
MBL scientists, students, alumni, Corporation members, trustees, families, and community members are invited to share photographs, letters, notebooks, stories, or anything else reflecting life at the MBL and Woods Hole as part of the MBL Community Archives project. Monday through Friday, 10 AM to 4 PM, Lillie Building, Room 228, 7 MBL St. Woods Hole. (Between August 12-23, the studio is open by appointment only).

June 22: Microbial Diversity Course Biodiversity Symposium/American Society for Microbiology Milestones in Microbiology Award Ceremony
9 AM to 4 PM, Redfield Auditorium, 57 Water St., Woods Hole.

June 28 – August 16: Friday Evening Lecture Series
Every Friday at 8 PM, Lillie Auditorium, 7 MBL St., Woods Hole; see for full schedule

July 4: MBL Club 4th of July Parade
12 to 12:30 PM, Water Street, Woods Hole

July 7: MBL Anniversary Concert Featuring Curtis on Tour
7 PM, Lillie Auditorium, 7 MBL Street, Woods Hole; 9 PM optional dessert reception
This special concert will feature students and faculty from the renowned Curtis Institute of Music. Each reception ticket holder will be eligible to win a selection of exciting door prizes including a stay at a luxury villa in the British Virgin Islands. The concert is made possible by a generous gift from Patrick and Irina Gage.  Visit or call 508-289-7423 for ticket information.

July 11: MBL Physiology Course Symposium in Honor of Andrew Szent-Györgyi
Time and location TBA

July 12: MBL Embryology Course 120th Anniversary Symposium
Time and location TBA

July 17: MBL Discovery Day: A Celebration of the MBL’s 125th Anniversary
3 to 5:30 PM, MBL St., Woods Hole
A FREE family science fair and MBL anniversary party featuring hands-on science exhibits, kids’ scavenger hunt, live music, face painting, fish printing, and more! Continuous shuttle service will be provided 3:00 to 6:00 PM from the MBL’s Devil’s Lane parking lot (opposite 379 Oyster Pond Road) to  MBL’s Lillie parking lot on Water Street in Woods Hole. For more information, contact the MBL Communications Office: 508-289-7423;

July 18: Cruise to Penikese Island
2:00 PM, Klimm Dock (next to the Pierce Exhibit Center on Water St., Woods Hole)
Learn about the early days of the MBL and cruise along the shoreline of this wildlife habitat with MBL Senior Scientist Chris Neill and Science Historian Garland Allen. Bring your binoculars! Adults, $35; Children, $20. Contact or 508-289-7451 for reservations.

August 1: Dedication of “Flukes,” a sculpture by Gordon Gund
Time TBA
The MBL’s Waterfront Park in Woods Hole was recently enhanced with the installation of “Flukes,” a cast-bronze sculpture generously donated to the MBL by the artist, Gordon Gund of Princeton, New Jersey.


The Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) is dedicated to scientific discovery and improving the human condition through research and education in biology, biomedicine, and environmental science. Founded in 1888 in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, the MBL is an independent, nonprofit corporation.