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Wendell Gilley Museum

4 Herrick Rd, Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island, ME 04679-4431
+1 207-244-7555
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Review Highlights
An unexpectedly engaging attraction

This museum is dedicated to the life and work of the famous decorative bird carver Wendell Gilley... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
czarlisle
,
Southwest Harbor, Maine
Worth a visit!

We are not birders nor wood carvers, but this place is a joy to visit. The detail put into the... read more

Reviewed 5 days ago
Roger L
,
Philly
Read all 37 reviews
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Overview
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Discover where people, art and nature meet in Maine. The Wendell Gilley Museum is a community center that celebrates the life and work of Wendell Gilley, a pioneer in the field of decorative bird carving. It teaches the art of bird carving and presents art exhibitions and educational programs with a special focus on people, nature and art. Enjoy a casual visit, enroll in a workshop, or join our members' carving club. Discover one of the "hidden gems" of Mount Desert Island.
  • Excellent71%
  • Very good24%
  • Average5%
  • Poor0%
  • Terrible0%
Travellers talk about
“life size” (3 reviews)
“on display” (3 reviews)
LOCATION
4 Herrick Rd, Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island, ME 04679-4431
CONTACT
Website
+1 207-244-7555
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Reviews (37)
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1 - 10 of 37 reviews

Reviewed 2 days ago

This museum is dedicated to the life and work of the famous decorative bird carver Wendell Gilley. Its exhibits of art, people and nature focus, of course, on bird carvings. "Meh", you might think, but the sheer artistry of the work on display is amazing....More

Thank czarlisle
Reviewed 5 days ago

We are not birders nor wood carvers, but this place is a joy to visit. The detail put into the carvings is amazing and made more so after taking an introductory carving lesson! The entire staff was pleasant and Steve the resident carver/teacher was so...More

Thank Roger L
Reviewed 1 week ago

A museum of bird carvings. The film was very good. Helped a lot to understand what this was all about. The carvings are nice.

Thank 10sJohn
Reviewed 6 July 2017

If you love birds and love talent, then you will love this museum. Quaint museum that can be visited for an hour or for more. So many details to see. Resident carver was welcoming and full of knowledge. All staff were extremely pleasant and accommodating....More

1  Thank Heather G
Sean C, Manager at Wendell Gilley Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Thanks for your great review Heather G. I'm glad you enjoyed the work of Wendell Gilley - an amazing talent with an incredible legacy of connecting people with nature, and their own creativity. Our resident artist, Steve Valleau, has been carving at the museum for...More

Reviewed 24 June 2017

Can see in ~15' yet worth the stop, or can linger longer. Usually there's a visiting carver actively working on his/her craft. Live video feed of osprey nest, with chicks -- that alone is worth the stop.More

Thank billwoodmd
Sean C, Manager at Wendell Gilley Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

We're glad to hear you enjoyed your visit, billwoodmd. Thanks for the great comments. Our carver, Steve Valleau, has been teaching carving at the Gilley now for over 32 years! We offer a range of carving classes year-round and every summer and fall, host a...More

Reviewed 20 September 2016 via mobile

While staying in southwest harbor, we went to the Wendell Gilley Museum. The collection of bird carvings is amazing. It chronicles the carving life of Wendell Gilley. As part of the museum there is an artists studio in which carving takes place. The three men...More

Thank Jnietupski3
GilleyMuseum, Executive Director at Wendell Gilley Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 22 September 2016

All of us here at the Wendell Gilley Museum are delighted that you enjoyed your recent visit, Jnietupski3. We are grateful that you took the time to share your impressions on TripAdvisor. Your visit-time suggestion reminded me of a day this summer when a woman...More

Reviewed 25 August 2016

Wendell Gilley was an artist who captured the beauty of the birds he saw everyday on Mount Desert Island. His work is inspiring and beautiful. The museum and carving workshop is displayed very well. Other local bird artist works are also on display. Well worth...More

Thank mary alyce o
GilleyMuseum, Executive Director at Wendell Gilley Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 27 August 2016

Thank you for your lovely review, mary alyce o. We are gratified that you found Wendell Gilley's work inspiring and enjoyed the exhibits. Connecting people, nature and art is our mission and our passion. We offer carving workshops, year-round and invite Mount Desert Island residents...More

Reviewed 1 August 2016

Very nice if you really like birds. Carvings, demonstration area, prints and paintings. Small fee to enter and a few sculptures and panels outside as well.More

Thank Linda P
GilleyMuseum, Executive Director at Wendell Gilley Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 3 August 2016

Thank you for helping to spread the word, Linda P. Your nice review is most appreciated. Check our website or Facebook page before your next visit to see what is new to to register for one of our carving classes. Yesterday a visitor came in...More

Reviewed 28 July 2016

We took a break from hiking the lovely trails in Acadia and decided to go to the Wendell Gilley Museum. Yes we knew it was a bird carving museum but honestly we did not know what exactly to except. It was AMAZING!!! The collection of...More

Thank BeachGal88
GilleyMuseum, Executive Director at Wendell Gilley Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 30 July 2016

Thanks so much for your enthusiastic review, BeachGal88. It pleases us so much to exceed first-time visitors' expectations. Combining hiking in Acadia National Park with a visit here is ideal. We aim to connect people, nature and art. In addition to showing off our current...More

Reviewed 25 July 2016 via mobile

Made a quick stop here on our trip around the island. We were immediately awed as we walked in by the large eagle carving. Throughout the museum there were all different types of birds of all sizes. It was very impressive. We also got to...More

Thank Hturtle333
GilleyMuseum, Executive Director at Wendell Gilley Museum, responded to this reviewResponded 30 July 2016

Thank you for sharing your experience on TripAdvisor. The Bald Eagle carving that awed you gets a lot of "wows;" it was a retirement gift to Nelson Rockefeller, from his brother, David, upon his completion of his term as Vice President of the United States....More

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Questions & Answers
Mjjlexi
19 April 2016|
Answer
Response from GilleyMuseum | Property representative |
Hello, We are renovating and installing new exhibitions right now. We will reopen Memorial Day Weekend, May 27-29, Friday and Saturday 10 AM - 4 PM and Sunday from Noon - 4 PM (Spring Open House and Carving Show on the... More
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