Descriptions of Volunteer Positions

Days of Service

Check our Volunteer page for this year’s dates and registration information.

Earth Day- April
Family-friendly: Open to ages 10 and up. Projects are sometimes available for ages 7 and up.
Demonstrate your support of the environment by helping to enhance CVNP’s biodiversity
through habitat restoration projects like native tree planting and removing invasive plant

River Day- May
Family-friendly: Open to ages 10 and up. Projects are sometimes available for ages 7 and up.
RiverDay is a local event celebrating the improving quality of the Cuyahoga River. Improve the
quality of the river by removing trash from the flood plains and restoring riparian zones.

National Trails Day- June
Family-friendly: Open to ages 10 and up. Projects are sometimes available for ages 7 and up.
American Hiking Society’s National Trails Day is the country’s largest celebration of trails. With
more than 100 miles of trails CVNP is an asset to northeast Ohio. Help maintain and repair

National Public Lands Day- September
Family-friendly: Open to ages 10 and up. Projects are sometimes available for ages 7 and up.
National Public Lands Day is the nation's largest, single-day volunteer effort for public lands.
Show your stewardship of natural resources, outdoor recreation, and the environment.

Make A Difference Day- October
Family-friendly: Open to ages 10 and up. Projects are sometimes available for ages 7 and up.
USA WEEKEND Magazine sponsored, Make A Difference Day, is currently the largest national
day of community service. Help to preserve, protect, and enhance CVNP through a variety of

CVNP Volunteer Postion Descriptions

Check our Volunteer page for more information.

Interpretation and Visitor Services

National Park Service Administration Office Assistant
Help with short-term administrative projects, primarily document scanning and filing.
Interpretation, Education, and Visitor Services.

Volunteers play a part in live history demonstrations (such as reenacting the Underground
Railroad). Volunteers must have the ability to memorize a script.

Cleveland Sight Center Program - Tandem Bike and Hike Assistant
Volunteers lead people who have little or no vision on hikes or tandem bike rides. Volunteers
also assist with program set-up and tear-down and help with bike maintenance and upkeep.
Volunteer must have the ability to walk and hold a conversation.

Crooked River Gang
Volunteers work cooperatively with the National Park Service to promote artistic creation and
exhibition in CVNP. Volunteers also assist with the distribution of promotional materials, set-up
and tear-down of exhibits, and staff exhibits featuring their own work.

CVSR Speakers’ Bureau
Present a scripted program about CVNP to groups aboard the train. Volunteers must have
excellent public speaking skills.

Cycling Schools
Volunteers assist in implementing bicycle programs on the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail for
elementary-age students from the Cleveland and Akron areas. Programs focus on the history of
Cuyahoga Valley as well as the importance of recreation as part of a healthy lifestyle. Interested
individuals must enjoy working with school-age children. Volunteers do not need to be able to
ride bicycles, but may be asked to assist with set-up and tear-down of program supplies and

Go Crew
Volunteers assist with youth programming as needed, and work outdoors with youth of varying
socioeconomic backgrounds. Must have verbal, nonverbal, and listening skills, enjoy working
with people, and have the ability to handle stressful situations, follow directions, and provide
customer service.

Lantern Carrier
Lantern Carriers guide visitors through evening programs by the light of lanterns. The primary
focus is visitor safety along the route.

Media Assistant
Volunteers help with media campaigns to promote CVNP and the Conservancy for Cuyahoga
Valley National Park. Duties include assisting with researching, updating media contacts,
proofreading, database use, website content writing, and general clerical assistance. Volunteers
must be proficient in the use of computers and internet applications.

Media Assistant - Milk Run and Bulletin Boards
Volunteers assist with distributing materials about CVNP, and help set up and maintain bulletin

Park Ambassador
Park Ambassadors are expected to provide excellent interpretive, educational, and/or visitor
services to CVNP visitors. Duties and responsibilities depend on your volunteer positions.

Community Engagement
Volunteers will present informal interpretation at community and organizational events
that focus on health and wellness. Volunteers will assist the national park in introducing
the park to under-served audiences and show how the park can help people achieve
individual health goals.

Front Desk Assistant at the Conservancy Office
Interested in helping visitors in an office setting? The Conservancy Administrative
Office can use a volunteer to answer the phone and greet visitors.

Hike Assistants
Assist ranger on park guided hikes or programs to enhance the visitors’ experience in
Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Hike Assistants will hike outdoors in varying degrees of
temperature and will wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Volunteer may carry up
to 10 lbs. of equipment.

Jr. Ranger Program Assistant
Volunteer will assist rangers during 2 hour long programs, with activities, games, and crafts.
Volunteers will be asked to assist with the program setup and clean up.

Lock 38 Demonstrators
If you are interested in canal history and would like an opportunity to provide others
with a meaningful interpretive experience, then consider the possibility of being a Lock
Presenter at Canal Visitor Center. Volunteers can lead formal interpretive talks outdoors
at Lock 38 and indoors at a lock model inside Canal Visitor Center; and provide
interpretive visitor services on the Towpath Trail to discuss Lock 38, the lock wrenches,
canal boats, the historic operation of the canal and its many lift locks, life for canal boat
families, historic games, the period clothing, and other appropriate park subjects.
Volunteers will dress in 19th century style clothing. Non-speaking roles are available as
Lock Operators.

Park Promoters
Promote Cuyahoga Valley National Park and the Conservancy at on-site and off-site
special events. On-site events include the Monthly Lyceum Series, Cuyahoga Valley
Heritage Series Concerts, and Music in the Meadow. Greet guests; answer questions;
engage them in conversations about the national park; promote ways for the guests to
become more involved in the national park through the Conservancy operations
including membership, Extraordinary Spaces, ParkShares, Trail Mix and Park Place in
Peninsula, volunteering, and Trails Forever. Duties include carrying and lifting.

Paw Patrol
Provide an opportunity for park visitors to learn more about CVNP and the opportunities
that canine companions can have along the trails. Through sharing personal
experiences, dog related rules and regulations and general orientation and information,
Paw Patrol helps provide a unique visitor experience and an opportunity to make
contact with a well-behaved and trained canine volunteer and their owner. Duties
include carrying reasonable literature, water and maintaining a safe environment
surrounding themselves and their canine companion.

Roving Historian & Artisan
Do you have a talent for putting on a historical demonstration or just enjoy sharing with
others something engaging about Northern Ohio history? Spring through the fall there
will be opportunities to share informal interpretation either as a historical artisan or by
engaging visitors through a variety of newly prepared activities that are both stimulating
and educational.

Rail Rovers
Volunteers will present informal interpretation aboard CVSR on regularly scheduled
runs. During the train ride they will distribute literature, share pelts, and answer
questions about the national park.

S.E.T. (Special Events Team)
Assist rangers with on-site special events, including Monthly Lyceum Series, Cuyahoga
Valley Heritage Series Concerts, and Music in the Meadow. Volunteer can help out in a
variety of areas: directing traffic flow in the parking lot, taking tickets and operating the
cash box, or serving refreshments.

Speakers’ Bureau
Present a scripted program about Cuyahoga Valley National Park and its park partners to
various organizations. Must have excellent public speaking skills.

Stanford Host
Greet visitors at welcome desk, provide general information regarding Cuyahoga Valley
National Park, help guests feel welcome and informed, check-out groups, re-stock
brochures, answer phone inquiries, assist staff in maintaining the Stanford House in a
guest ready state, provide tours of home to interested groups, perform data entry, and
if interested -garden and landscape around the grounds.

Trail Mix Shop Greeter
Assist retail staff in the operation of the stores by providing excellent customer service,
greeting visitors, providing information/orientation, and provide First Aid/CPR when
needed and maintain First Aid/CPR requirements. By keeping abreast of current park
resources and issues, promote the national park and the Conservancy’s operations to
visitors. Rove between Trail Mix Peninsula and the Peninsula Depot to welcome visitors
to Peninsula, encouraging visits to Trail Mix Peninsula. Rove between Trail Mix Boston
and the Volunteer Management Office, answering questions and greeting visitors.
Duties include carrying and lifting.

Visitor Center Assistants
Assist rangers with operation of visitor center, including: greeting visitors, providing
information/orientation, operating radios, and completing Eastern National sales; will
provide First Aid/CPR when needed and maintain First Aid/CPR requirements; and will
keep abreast of current resource issues and maintain knowledge of park and its
resources. Most work will be performed indoors in historic structures.

Wildlife Watchers
Rove at the Wildlife Watcher Station and at times on the park trails. Volunteer has direct
contact with park visitors by providing informal interpretation about the park resources
and at times giving directions. Reports visitor emergencies and responds to first aid
situations according to certification and training. Volunteer will lift and carry materials,
work in variable weather conditions and hike all types of terrain.

Take photos of assigned events, people, and other parkwide activities. Photos will be used in
park and partner publication with proper credit.

Program Leads – Bird Watching and Boomerang
Volunteers lead interpretive recreation, nature, and history programs. Volunteers are elevated
to this position after several years of experience and service.

Quest Crew and Quest Developer
Volunteers assist staff with field testing draft quests, managing quest boxes, constructing small
structures in which to hide quest boxes, carving ink stamps, making logbooks, assisting with
ranger-led questing programs, helping park staff make select quests available via geocaching or
letterboxing websites, and assisting quest developers with background research. Volunteers
may also develop one or more quests on approved sites within the Ohio & Erie Canalway.

Rail Rovers
Volunteers rove Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad during regularly scheduled runs and provide
information to visitors. Volunteers also distribute materials about the park, answer questions,
and share information about the park.

Student Explorer Assistant
Volunteers assist the National Park Service in presenting Student Explorer programming to
school-aged children. Programs include Are We There Yet?, Underground Railroad, and All
Aboard for Animals. Volunteers must commit to two programs a month.

Capture video footage of assigned events, people, and other parkwide activities. Photos will be
used in park and partner publication with proper credit.


Volunteers assist the National Park Service in maintaining safe and well-groomed trails within
CVNP. Volunteers participate in trail sweeps on the adopted trails and report the conditions to
the National Park Service.

Buckeye Trail Association
Volunteers assist the association in promoting the construction, maintenance, and use of the
Buckeye Trail within CVNP.

Cuyahoga Valley Trails Council
Volunteers assist in building, maintaining, and improving trails within CVNP using hand and
power tools. Volunteers also assist in clearing new trails, installing drainage, building bridges
and steps, and performing vital maintenance.

Medina Ohio Horsemen’s Council
The OHC is a volunteer group whose purpose is to help plan, promote, and participate in the
building, inspection, maintenance, and improvement of equestrian trails in and around CVNP.

Resource Management

Citizen Scientist
Projects include inventory and long-term monitoring surveys for birds, butterflies, deer, beaver,
amphibians, plants, moths, and aquatic resources. Work may involve hiking off trail and using a
variety of scientific equipment to record data and observations. No specific knowledge or skills
are required, but field identification and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) skills are helpful.

Database Manager
Volunteers help process data entry and administrative projects across the Resource
Management division.

GPS and GIS Corps
Volunteers operate different Global Positioning Systems (GPS) to map trails, routes, and
features of CVNP and assist with database entry.

Library Assistant – Historic Resource File
Volunteers catalog and maintain library materials, help with database upkeep, and scan
historical documents to be added into the database.

Habitat Restoration: Invasive Plant Removal
Family-friendly: Open to ages 10 and up
Use hand tools (loppers and saws) to remove invasive shrubs, such as honeysuckle and autumn
olive, and pile the cut vegetation. This project helps conserve biodiversity by creating space for
native plants to thrive. Visit our Habitat Restoration webpage for details:

Habitat Restoration: Native Seed Collection
Family-friendly: Open to all ages
Participate with a small-sized crew to collect seeds from native plants. Project includes a short,
off-trail hike. Groups and families with kids welcome. Visit our Habitat Restoration webpage for

Wetland Monitors
Monitor water levels weekly at one or more selected wetlands throughout the park. Water level
measurements are taken from water table wells constructed of PVC and well screen. Volunteers
will hike off trail to each well location using a map or GPS.

Visitor Resource and Protection

Visitor and Resource Protection: Permit Monitors
Volunteers assist in providing services during weddings, such as making sure that visitors to the
park do not interfere with wedding events.

Safety Instructor
Volunteers attend training courses and teach safety classes to park staff and volunteers.
Volunteer safety instructors are responsible for maintaining safety training supplies in good
order and reporting low supply levels to the supervisor. Volunteers teach a minimum of three
classes per year. Volunteer must possess strong communication skills, including the ability to
supervise a diverse group of participants.

Tract Trekker
Volunteers inventory land tracts by using maps, compass, global positioning systems (GPS), and
cameras. Volunteers also record and observe any hazards or concerns related to park
resources. Volunteers must have the ability to hike in rough terrain and use a digital camera,
binoculars, measuring wheel, compass, radio, and GPS.

Volunteer hike, bike, and horse patrols provide education, assistance, and information and act
as role models for visitors. Volunteers provide law enforcement rangers with assistance by
observing, recording, and reporting any activities that may be in violation of park regulations.
Volunteers also provide first aid and CPR if needed, as well as basic bike maintenance and
assistance with approved special events. Volunteers must have the ability to document
pertinent information on a patrol log and understand how a volunteer may assist law
enforcement staff and act accordingly in the field.

Visitor and Resource Protection District Operations (VRP Operations)
Volunteers provide assistance to the Visitor and Resource Protection Division by assisting with
special events parking, inventory of equipment, traffic counts, inspections, posting signs,
resource projects, fire inspections, and structure checks. Volunteers must have the ability to
document pertinent information and to articulate how a volunteer may assist law enforcement
staff and act accordingly in the field.

Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Education Program Leader
Volunteers will present curriculum-based education programs at CVEEC to school groups during
the school year, especially September, October, April, and May, and to youth groups and
families during the summer. Training will be provided for specific curricula.

Kitchen Assistant
Volunteers assist food service with food preparation and clean up before and after meal times.

Night Hike Leader
Night Hike Leader volunteers will lead 1.5-hour night hikes for scouts staying at the CVEEC as
a part of scout weekends. Volunteer will be responsible for the education and safety of scouts
during programming.

Office Assistant
Volunteers help at the Hines Hill office, Volunteer Management Office, and CVEEC
Administrative Office. Projects include assistance with mailings, membership programs, special
events, and ticket sales. Other duties may include picking up maps and brochures from park
locations, organizing storage areas, data entry of volunteer hours and information. Necessary
office management skills include organization, computer skills, telephone etiquette, working
well with others, and professionalism.

Patio Patrol Gardening
Volunteers assist in maintenance of the flower beds, patios, and grounds at the Donor Garden
at Hines Hill Campus and Trail Mix in Peninsula and Boston. Duties include but are not limited to
weeding, trimming, mulching, raking, sweeping, planting, and pruning. This position requires
kneeling, bending, carrying up to 25 pounds, and working outside for 2 - 5 hours. Hours are

Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad

Apply for positions on CVSR's website.

Volunteers perform all switching operations under guidelines or instructions of the conductor
or engineer. The brakeman sets or releases the handbrakes on all cars. Volunteers must be
aware of all conditions and activities on and around the train. The brakeman also performs both
“terminal” (in-yard) and “intermediate terminal” (changing ends) brake tests in conjunction
with the engineer.

Volunteers assist with selling food, drinks, and souvenirs to passengers.

Volunteers’ primary role is to be in charge of the train. The volunteer conductor is responsible
for compliance with Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) regulations, CVSR rules, and CSX
Corporation rules while on CSX property. The conductor takes direction from the director of
operations or, in the director’s absence, the superintendent.

Volunteers assist with the primary safety control of the train and run the locomotive under the
authority of the conductor in accordance with all applicable rules. The volunteer engineer is in
charge of the locomotive and cab.

Volunteers assist with coach and engine maintenance/repair as assigned under the supervision
of CVSR staff. Duties assigned are commensurate with experience and knowledge.

Office Work
Volunteers perform typing, filing, and other clerical duties as assigned in the CVSR office.

The Polar Express ™
Volunteers assist with the presentation of the Polar Express ™ program. Elf positions include
readers, assistants, servers, and workers at the North Pole. Volunteers are asked to commit to
four evenings during the program, which takes place from November to December.

Trainman/Car Attendant
Volunteer trainmen are assistants to the conductor, and trainman duties are assigned by the
conductor. The primary duty of the trainman/car attendant is to ensure the safety and comfort
of all passengers. As such, volunteers must function as friendly, positive, and caring
representatives of CVSR.


Countryside Farmers’ Markets & Countryside Public Market
Countryside operates farmers’ markets year-round at Howe Meadow, Old Trail School, Highland Square,
and Akron’s Northside District. Volunteers assist staff and vendors with a variety of tasks outlined below.

Setup: Assist with setting up partitions and tables for vendors. Assist vendors in unloading their
products/supplies and setting up their spaces. Some lifting required.

Parking Management (Howe Meadow only): Direct traffic and parking during market hours alongside
other volunteers and a police officer. Safety vest and flags will be provided.

Bag Runner (Countryside Public Market only): Assist customers in carrying their grocery bags to their
vehicles or to the train station. Some lifting required.

Cheese: Assist Countryside staff in selling cheese: setting up cheese display; providing customer assistance
and cheese samples; tearing down cheese display. Must become familiar with the various cheese types.

Customer Counter: Count customers as they enter market using a handheld clicker so that Countryside can
track market visitation.

Info Booth: Greet customers and provide information and customer assistance as needed. Become familiar
with how customers can use tokens to purchase products and the various merchandise items being sold.

Photographer: Take photographs of the market to be used in Countryside’s marketing efforts. Photo credits
may be given to volunteer if desired. Photos should be in .jpg format and given to Countryside via email
attachment or on a USB drive. Photographers may use their own equipment, but Countryside is not liable
for any damage that may occur while volunteering.

Tear-down: Assist vendors in packing up their spaces, loading their products/supplies into their vehicles,
and directing vehicles into the bay doors. Some lifting required.

Farmers’ Market Ambassadors
Market ambassadors greet customers as they enter the market or rove throughout duration of market
to create an excellent market experience for customers. Volunteers provide information, orientation, and
general customer service. Make meaningful connections with customers and provide feedback to Market
Managers post-market.

Office Assistant
Office volunteers assist Countryside staff with a variety of clerical tasks including filing, data entry,
envelope-stuffing, online researching, merchandise inventory, shredding documents, and other various
tasks as needed.

Special Events
Volunteers assist with execution of special events at Countryside Farmers’ Markets. Special events
may include annual tomato tasting event, smaller-scale seasonal tasting events, market tours, and more.
Intermittent opportunity.

Zero Waste

At Countryside Farmers’ Markets at Howe Meadow and Old Trail School, volunteers promote the
zero waste initiative through a waste sorting station. Volunteers educate and instruct market customers on
how to correctly dispose of their waste generated at the market through composting and recycling.
Volunteers encourage customers to think about how to reduce waste and increase the trash diversion rate.

Last updated: February 25, 2019

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

15610 Vaughn Road
Brecksville, OH 44141


(330) 657-2752

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