Parks, Arts & Recreation Volunteering

Make a Difference

Parks volunteerVolunteers 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.

Work Parties

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.

 

Ellis Cove Trail Grant Project

Thanks to a generous grant from REI Co-op, we have contracted with the Washington Trails Association (WTA) to bring much needed repair and maintenance to Ellis Cove Trail in Priest Point Park. WTA hosts volunteer work parties lead by trail experts on select Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. For more information, visit wta.org/volunteer.

Springwood Parcel - Saturday, January 27 - 10:00am-1:00pm

Come and see for yourself how rewarding it is to pull out English holly, Himalayan blackberry, and English ivy! The parcel is located at 1500 Springwood Ave. NE, but PARKING IS ONLY ALLOWED ON DEVON DRIVE NE. After parking, follow the signs to the entrance to the parcel. Meet just inside the gate.

Grass Lake Nature Park (6th Ave. Entrance) - Wednesday, January 31 - 9:30am-12:00pm

Time to brush back some trails! Join staff and stewards as we cut back the encroaching vegetation growing along the walking trails in the Southern half of the park. Park street side on 6th Ave. NW and Cozy Dr. NW. Meet at the trail head located at 3432 6th Ave. NW.

Friendly Grove Park - Saturday, February 3 - 10:00am-1:00pm

Love to get dirty? Then this is the volunteer work party for you! We will be planting native vegetation in support of our restoration projects at this wonderful neighborhood park. The park is located at 2316 Friendly Grove Rd. NE. Meet at the shelter. Limited parking available.

Evergreen Park - Wednesday, February 7 - 9:30am-12:00pm

The invasive Himalayan blackberry struggle is real. This work party will focus on removing the sporadic invasive plants still lingering in the park. The park is located at 1445 Evergreen Park Dr. SW. Meet near the swing set.  Street parking is available. 

Taylor Wetland Restoration Work Party - Saturday, February 10 - 10:00am-1:00pm

What is Taylor Wetland? It looks like a park or open space, but it's so much more. Taylor Wetland is a site specifically designed to reduce flooding, improve water quality, and provide habitat for wildlife. Join Parks and Environmental Services as we restore this wonderful wetland! Taylor Wetland is only accessible by foot, so we will be meeting in the Northeast corner of the Olympia Home Depot parking lot, located at 1325 Fones Rd. SE. For more information, directions, and registration please visit the Stream Team website.

Harry Fain's Legion Park - Wednesday, February 14 - 9:30am-12:00pm

Parks would love to be your Valentine today! Join us as we spread the love we have for this lovely park by ridding it of invasive plants! The park is located at 1115 20th Ave. SE. Meet at the shelter. Limited parking available.

Mission Creek Nature Park - Wednesday, February 21 - 9:30am-12:00pm

Time to plant some beautiful and beneficial native plants around the wetland buffer of this delightful park! We will meet at the San Francisco Ave. trail head, 1700 San Francisco Ave. NE. Street parking available. **It is a very wet/muddy area. Rain boots or muck boots recommended.**

***CANCELLED*** Springwood Parcel - Saturday, February 24 - 10:00am-1:00pm

With our apologies, this work party has been cancelled. Please join us during another volunteer work party!  With you as a volunteer, English ivy doesn't stand a chance! We are continuing our monthly volunteer work parties here to tackle the invasive plant population. The parcel is located at 1500 Springwood Ave. NE, but PARKING IS ONLY ALLOWED ON DEVON DRIVE NE. After parking, follow the signs to the entrance to the parcel. Meet just inside the gate.

Yashiro Japanese Garden - Wednesday, February 28 - 9:30am-12:00pm

Winter is here, and so is the leaf litter. Join us as we rake and weed this hidden downtown gem. The park is located at 1010 Plum St. SE. Meet at the side entrance to the park. Parking is available at the Lee Creighton Justice Center, 900 Plum St. SE.

Steward Positions

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.

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

Requirements

  • 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
  • For safety reasons, must wear leather or sturdy work boots

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.

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

Requirements

  • 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
  • For safety reasons, must wear leather or sturdy work boots

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.

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

Requirements

  • 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
  • For safety reasons, must wear leather or sturdy work boots

Questions?

For more information about the above opportunities, contact Park Stewardship staff at 360.753.8365 or parkstewardship@ci.olympia.wa.us.


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 and Medical Waiver
  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.

Once a volunteer placement has been decided upon, the volunteer is required to successfully pass a background check. The background check information will be provided via email to the volunteer at which time the volunteer will be asked to complete an online form. We appreciate your attention to completely filling out these 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.