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.   

Evergreen Park

Friday, May 8, 9:30am-12pm & Saturday, May 9, 10am-1pm
The time for weeding and invasive removal continues at Evergreen Park! Join your community in preparing this public recreational space for the busy summer season. Meet in the open grassy area at the center of the park located at 1445 Evergreen Park Dr SW.

Lions Park

Wednesday, May 13, 9:30am-12pm
This neighborhood park doesn't need much, only a few final touches to keep things running smoothly.  Lend a hand at replacing the sand in the horseshoe pit and painting the backboards. Meet Park Stewardship in the shelter to get things started. Lions Park is located at 800 Wilson St SE.

Sunrise Park

Friday, May 15, 9:30am-12pm & Saturday, May 16, 10am-1pm
The new playground at Sunrise Park has really brightened up the place!  Time to spruce up the vegetation to help compliment this new addition.  Volunteers will weed and mulch tree circles throughout.  Join the effort at 505 Bing St NW.  Meet off the parking lot. 

Madison Scenic Park

Wednesday, May 20, 9:30am-12pm & Saturday, May 23, 10am-1pm 
Invasive plants are rampant at Madison Scenic Park.  Join the crowd to tackle English Ivy, Himalayan Blackberry, Scotchbroom, and Morning Glory!  Meet inside the park at the bottom of the switchback trail.  Madison Scenic Park is located at 1600 10th Ave SE.

Yashiro Japanese Garden

Wednesday, May 27, 9:30am-12pm
The monthly effort at Yashiro Japanese Garden continues!  Get your hands dirty alongside park stewards to help maintain delicate flowerbeds in this historic oasis.  Meet inside the garden located at 1010 Plum St SE. 

Woodruff Park

Saturday, May 30, 10am-1pm
Park Stewardship hits this historic westside park with shovels and rakes to weed and mulch flowerbeds and tree circles.  Come join the party!  Woodruff Park is located at 1500 Harrison Ave NW.  Meet near the tennis courts. 

Priest Point Park

Wednesday & Friday, June 3 & 5, 9:30am-12pm
National Trails Day is fast approaching!  Help prepare for this exciting event through weekday work parties at Priest Point Park.  Volunteers will meet at Kitchen Shelter #1 to organize and head to the project site.  Priest Point Park is located at 2600 East Bay Dr NE.

National Trails Day! - Priest Point Park 

Saturday, June 6, 10am-1pm
Celebrate National Trails Day with Park Stewardship!  Efforts will focus on the woodsy wonder trail in Priest Point Park. Meet in Shelter #1 off 2600 East Bay Dr NE. Sign up today for this free event!

 

Park Stewards are volunteer or unpaid intern positions that require at least 4 volunteer hours per month and a 6 month minimum commitment. All Park Stewards must be 18 or older and successfully complete a background check and criminal history questionnaire.

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! Harrison Collet, DJ Jackson, Curtis DeBell, Jenna Killman, Olivia Kay, Allison Zhang, Sarah Arnold, Sean Conant, Eva Johnson, Sydney Kuhn, Ben McBride, Peter Choi, Aaron Raymond, Au Thai, and Jordan Jekel for your help at Friendly Grove Park!