Volunteer With Tuckahoe State Park
Message from Park Manager, Lt. John Ohler
Volunteers are a key resource for the parks of the Upper Eastern Shore. Camp Hosts, Trail workers and program volunteers help us provide the quality experiences we offer to the visiting public. Many of our volunteers return year after year because they enjoy the friendly atmosphere and beautiful surroundings.
Volunteer Mounted Patrol
Ride into the sunset and help park guests. Tuckahoe would like to establish a Volunteer Mounted Patrol to be the “eyes and ears” of the park. These Volunteer Rangers patrol the park on horseback (or bicycle) assisting park guests, reporting trail maintenance issues, and reporting other problems and violations. All VMP’s must provide their own horse and be 18 years of age. Interested persons should start volunteering through different opportunities at the park. After accruing 40 hours of volunteer service within the park, the volunteer attends training for Volunteer Ranger certification and is provided with a uniform. After receiving certification, the volunteer commits to 100 hours of service per year. If you are interested but do not have your own horse, you can also become a Volunteer Ranger and patrol on foot or bicycle.
Like to get your hands dirty? Want to look back at the end of the day with a feeling of accomplishment? Volunteer to join one of our Trail Maintenance and Repair crews. Clear Trails after storms (or the winter off-season), collect trash and debris, build water bars, repair trails damaged by storms or usage, and otherwise help to keep our network of over 15 miles of land trails in tip-top shape. A strong back, and the ability to work outside in all weather on potentially rugged terrain, is a must. Familiarity with hand and/or power tools, and/or some experience with trail work, are a bonus but not required. Wear weather-appropriate clothing that can get dirty/muddy and sturdy work or hiking boots; bring water bottle, work gloves, lunch, as well as sunscreen, bug repellent and rain protection as needed. This is an occasional opportunity and days and times will vary – see the park’s calendar of events for specifics or call the park office if you would prefer to organize a workday for your group or individually. The water trails also require periodic maintenance much like the land trails. Organized group clean-up days are scheduled throughout the year (see park calendar of events) or call the park office if you would like to work on this type of project independently.
Become a Volunteer Ranger and help protect Maryland's natural resources! The Volunteer Ranger Program is for people ages 18 and above who want to assist the Department's regular work force in state parks with operations, programs and public service. Volunteers are trained and provided with uniforms for their jobs once they have completed 40 hours of volunteer service at a state park. Orientation training helps rangers become acclimated to the state park service. Additional training opportunities, that may include CPR, first aid, search and rescue, and trail stewardship, are offered on a regional basis. As ambassadors of the state parks, Volunteer Rangers serve a vital role to the public. Thousands of visitors to Maryland's state parks look to Volunteer Rangers for guidance and help.
Scales & Tales
Like working closely with animals? Fascinated by reptiles and birds of prey? Then volunteering to assist with our Scales and Tales program might be just the opportunity you were looking for! You will assist in the care -- mostly feeding and cleaning the aviary -- of our non-releasable raptors and reptiles, and may earn the privilege of helping with health checks and programs. Requirements include love of working with animals and comfort in working with them, calm and patient personality, willingness to get dirty and messy as part of the job, and understanding of the importance of keeping our animals healthy, clean and comfortable. Must be at least 16 years old and able to lift a minimum of 20 lbs. regularly and 50 lbs. occasionally or with help. Volunteers must be willing to work outside in all weather. Wear clothes and shoes that can get dirty (closed shoes or boots only); sanitary gloves and other needed equipment will be provided. This is an ongoing opportunity. Volunteers must be willing to commit to regular days and times. Training is offered 1-2 times per year.
Enjoy meeting your fellow campers? Tuckahoe’s camp hosts receive a free campsite in exchange for working for 20 hours per week. The work to be done is generally campground related: welcoming new campers, keeping the campsites clean, keeping the campground in good condition, keeping bathhouses clean and in working order, answering questions asked by campers, and letting the campers know what is happening in the park/area over the period of the campers stay. Camp Hosts are asked to make a commitment of 1-month stay.
Please help us assess visitor satisfaction with State Parks and the valued economic impact of State Park visitors in Maryland. A survey has been developed to collect data using recognized statistical methods. We need one volunteer to distribute surveys in the park on the dates indicated:
- August 13, 10:00 a.m. & 12:30 p.m. (rain date August 27)
- September 7, 10:00 a.m. & 12:30 p.m. (rain date September 21)
- October 4, 10:00 a.m. & 12:30 p.m. (rain date October 18)
The project goal is to collect completed surveys from visitors enjoying the State Park. As a volunteer, your task will be to request park visitors to take the survey when they return home by either collecting their email address or distributing the survey so that an Internet link to the survey can be sent to them. All volunteers will receive project instructions, talking points to guide your conversations with visitors, record-keeping forms and printed surveys. This is a very important project and the results of this survey will help us make important decisions for years to come.
Special Events Assistance
Want to help at the park, but have limited volunteer time? Volunteering at one of our Special Events -- the Easter Egg Hunt, Tuckahoe Triathlon, and others -- could be just what you are looking for. We have lots of opportunities, from sharing tales of nature and history to helping with kids' crafts, from directing traffic to setting up/tearing down, or providing information about the parks. Should be flexible, patient and cheerful, service-oriented, and committed to helping guests have the best possible experience at the event. Wear clothing appropriate to the weather, and comfortable/sturdy shoes or boots. Be aware that you may be assigned an indoor or outdoor location, and that you may be standing throughout your shift. Check with event organizer or Volunteer Coordinator about whether food or water will be available at the event. This is an occasional opportunity and dates and times will be announced well prior to the event.
If you are interested in any of these opportunities, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator, Ranger Jessica Conley at firstname.lastname@example.org or (410) 820-1668.