Parks, Arts & Recreation Volunteering

Make a Difference

Volunteer planting treeVolunteers enable Olympia Parks, Arts & Recreation to offer a wonderful array of affordable recreational, educational and cultural programs. Volunteers also contribute thousands of hours of time to maintain and improve our parks.

Areas of volunteer interest include special events, after school programs, camps, athletics, gym supervision, teen program, bulb planting, trail maintenance, arts and clerical work.

Our volunteers come in all ages and many times work directly with the public in providing customer service to the community. Our volunteers do tremendous work and have great fun as well!


Volunteer in Parks

The Volunteer in Parks program offers a variety of ways to help Olympia's parks. You can join an upcoming work party, become a Park Steward, or Adopt-a-Park with your neighborhood/organization. Tools, gloves and some refreshments are provided. All ages are welcome to participate. Please contact the Park Stewardship program at 360.753.8365 or by email for more information.

For all work parties, please dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes or boots that can get wet and muddy. Youth under age 14 must be accompanied by an adult and all youth under 18 years must have a signed Waiver and Medical Alert or have a parents' signature on the sign-in roster at the project work site.   

Harry Fain's Legion Park 

Wednesday, September 2, 9:30am - 12pm & Saturday, September 5, 10am-1pm
Improvements at this neighborhood park are making a big impact!  Join fellow volunteers for this end of summer push as we complete removal of invasive species and continue painting efforts!  Meet under the small covered shelter off 1115 20th Ave SE.

Priest Point Park

Wednesday, September 9, 9:30am - 12pm
The front sign at Priest Point Park needs a new look!  Bring your inner artist to lend a hand at painting the entrance to this popular Olympia destination.  Priest Point Park is located at 2600 East Bay Dr NE.  Volunteers will meet near the Rose Garden.

Percival Landing 

Saturday, September 12, 9am-12pm
Join the crowd for an early Saturday morning of park clean-up!  Volunteers will collaborate to weed flowerbeds, remove invasive species, and prepare the waterfront park for the fall season.  Meet in the large grassy area next to the playground.  Percival Landing is located at 405 Columbia St NW.  Please note the early 9am start time for this Saturday work party. 

Sunrise Park 

Wednesday, September 16, 9:30am-12pm & Saturday, September 19, 10am - 1pm
Park Stewardship revisits Sunrise Park to continue weeding tree circles and removing invasive species from the park borders.  Make sure to wear long pants to avoid thorns from the blackberry at this party!  Sunrise Park is located at 505 Bing St NW.

Yashiro Japanese Garden

Wednesday, September 23, 9:30am-12pm
Monthly Park Stewardship work parties continue at this downtown oasis.  Stop in to lend a hand at weeding, pruning, or path clean-up!  Yashiro Japanese Garden is located at 1010 Plum St SE.

Priest Point Park - National Public Lands Day!

Saturday, September 26, 10am - 1pm
City of Olympia Parks and Stream Team are partnering to host a fun and exciting stewardship work party for National Public Lands Day that the whole family will love! Help steward Priest Point Park by continuing restoration efforts along the mouth of Mission Creek!  Tools, gloves, and light refreshments will be provided.  Meet at Shelter #4 in Priest Point Park located at 2600 East Bay Dr NE. Sign up today for this free event!   

Decatur Woods Park

Wednesday, September 30, 9:30am-12pm & Saturday, October 3, 10am - 1pm
Efforts continue at Decatur Woods Park to remove weeds and invasive species from flowerbeds and wooded areas.  Bring the family!  Meet under the small covered shelter at the park off 1015 Decatur St SW.  Limited street parking is available with additional parking in the church lot next to the park. 

 

TRAIL STEWARDSHIP PROGRAM

The Trail Stewardship Program is possible due to a generous grant from REI. The goal is to repair and maintain the trails in Watershed and Priest Point Park over the course of 12 weeks with help from volunteers. All ages and abilities are invited to drop in and participate!

Priest Point Park - Ellis Cove Trail Resurfacing Series

Sunday, August 30, 10am - 1pm

Trail improvements continue at Priest Point Park along the popular Ellis Cove Trail.  Lend a hand at water diversion, hauling gravel, raking, or brushing vegetation!  Work along the Ellis Cove Trail will begin through the secondary entrance to Priest Point Park off 555 Flora Vista Rd NE.  Meet in the parking lot to be guided to the project location. 

 

For all work parties, please dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes or boots that can get wet and muddy. Youth under age 14 must be accompanied by an adult and all youth under 18 years must have a signed Waiver and Medical Alert or have a parents' signature on the sign-in roster at the project work site.

Park Stewards are volunteer or unpaid intern positions that focus on a specific park or area of park. Park Stewards must meet the requirements listed below. To apply, submit an application and waiver to the Park Stewardship Program email or mail it to City of Olympia Parks, Attention: Park Stewardship, PO Box 1967, Olympia WA  98507.

Locations
Evergreen Park, Garfield Nature Trail, Grass Lakes Refuge, Margaret McKenny Park, McGrath Woods Park, Mission Creek Nature Park, Olympia Woodland Trail, Priest Point Park, Trillium Park, Watershed Park, and Yauger Park.

Specific Duties

  • Identify and pull invasive plants
  • Replant, and care for native plants until they are established
  • Report overnight camping to Park Ranger
  • Clean graffiti off surfaces
  • Pick up litter
  • Report damaged structures, such as bridges or board walks to Supervisor
  • Help in finding donated native plants for replanting projects
  • Complete annual report on activities, and track hours

Locations
Burri Park, Evergreen Park, Garfield Nature Trail, Grass Lakes Refuge, Margaret McKenny Park, McGrath Woods Park, Mission Creek Nature Park, Olympia Woodland Trail, Priest Point Park, Trillium Park, Watershed Park, and Yauger Park.

Specific Duties

  • Maintain trails to OPARD standards
  • Pull invasive plants from trail
  • Clear debris from trail
  • Re-grade eroding trails
  • Add surfacing when needed, such as crushed rock
  • Cut back vegetation from encroaching on trail (within 4 ft standard)
  • Clean graffiti off signs
  • Pick up litter along trail
  • Report damaged structures, such as bridges or board walks to Supervisor
  • Help in finding donated materials for the trails
  • Complete annual report on activities, and track hours

Locations
Evergreen Park, Margaret McKenny Park, McGrath Woods Park, Priest Point Park Rose Garden, Lion’s Park, Bigelow Park, Harry Fain’s Legion Park, Burri Park, Woodruff Park, Yashiro Japanese Garden, Madison Scenic Park, and Friendly Grove.

Specific Duties

  • Pull weeds
  • Edge flower beds
  • Apply new mulch or bark
  • Clean graffiti off surfaces
  • Pick up litter
  • Report any damages to Supervisor
  • Occasional plantings
  • Repaint benches, picnic tables & wood signs
  • Complete annual report on activities, and track hours

Special Requirements for all Park Steward Positions

  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Ability to commit to a 6 month minimum period of service 
  • Must successfully complete a background check and criminal history questionnaire
  • For safety reasons, must wear leather or sturdy work boots


Recreation Program & Event Volunteers

To volunteer to assist with Parks, Arts & Recreation programs such as camps, events and athletics:

  1. Complete the Volunteer Application Form
  2. Return it to The Olympia Center, 222 Columbia St. NW, Olympia, WA 98501.

Once received, we will contact you to discuss a volunteer placement. If one cannot be arranged at that time, we will keep your application for one year and notify you as opportunities arise.

The application form includes a background check and criminal history questionnaire. We appreciate your attention to filling out these two very important forms. Our volunteer screening process is a crucial step in assuring your safety as well as the safety of our customers.

We look forward to discussing volunteer opportunities with you. Please feel free to contact us at 360.753.8380 if you have any questions regarding the volunteer application process.


Recognition

THANK YOU! Micah Frankus, Jayne Iddins, Hayley McGath, Leslie Ruiz, Cliff Carpenter, Sean Conant, Candace Jacobs, Todd Laskowski, Monique Woods, Brea Woods, Nick Arthur, Yann Rivera, Alyse Rivers, Christine Chin, Santino Enriquez, Kelsey McGath, and Wyatt Saver for your help at Harry Fain's Legion Park!