Mission StatementThe mission of the Volunteers in Parks program of Lewis and Clark National Historical Park is to provide individuals opportunities to commemorate, preserve, and communicate the stories associated with the Corps of Discovery and its winter near the mouth of the Columbia River. Volunteers are important team members of the park staff and are encouraged to participate in all trainings, meetings, special events, etc. that are available to staff. This program will affirm their ownership and stewardship of this park and the entire National Park Service and will honor their specific contributions.
Lewis and Clark National Historical Park's Volunteers in ParksFort Clatsop has an outstanding team of Volunteers in Parks (VIPs). These VIPs assist the park with a wide variety of tasks.
These include greeting and orienting visitors, fee collection, custodial work, conducting foot and kayak tours, invasive plant control, answering visitors’ questions, sewing living history clothing, data entry, leading hikes, native plant nursery work, answering phones, designing curriculum, library and inventory projects, archive/collections work, conducting living history and education programs, and special events (e.g. monthly 3rd Sunday speaker series, spring and fall elk pellet surveys, 2nd Wednesday of July Newfoundland dog event; March, June and September fun runs).
Volunteers may be fingerprinted and undergo background checks.
Volunteers are encouraged to participate in park training. This includes the annual staff training in June as well as monthly staff safety meetings.
RV sites with 30 amp electricity only (no sewer or water) are available in the park for VIPs with RVs who don’t live locally. RV sites at a nearby campground can sometimes be arranged for VIPs with distant homes who are scheduled to work a minimum of three days per week for at least one month as Visitor Information Associate
If you are interested in applying to be a Lewis and Clark National Historical Park VIP please read some sample job descriptions below.
Current VIP opportunities at Lewis and Clark NHP
Custodial Associate: Assist staff with cleaning buildings, recycling, sweeping sidewalks, and the daily opening of parking lots and trailheads. This work starts early each day and occurs year round.
Education Associate: Assist rangers with organizing spring and fall weekday school groups and conducting activities with school children. Share lessons relating to the Lewis and Clark Expedition and the environment. Support the park’s traveling trunk and video loan programs. Co-lead activities during two weeks of camps in the summer. This position is for local volunteers or those willing to use the park’s volunteer RV sites.
Kayak Associate: Assist rangers with summer paddle program by safely conducting canoe/kayak river tours. June safety training is required. This work is for local volunteers, but an RV site may be provided for someone working 4 days/week.
Living History Associate: Assist with safe costumed interpretation of early 19th century skills e.g. quill pen writing, hide tanning, rendering, making tallow candles, flint and steel fire starting, or flintlock firing. This work occurs on spring weekdays, all summer and Christmas break. This is for local volunteers or those willing to use the park’s volunteer RV sites.
Resource Associate: Assist with library projects, native plant nursery or garden work, and occasional work parties for an elk pellet study or re-vegetation projects. This work occurs all year. This position is for local volunteers.
Trail Patrol Associate: Aid staff with trail patrolling and light trail maintenance along the 12 miles of park trails. This work occurs all year. This position is for local volunteers as there is no housing.
Visitor Information Associate: Greet and orient visitors, collect admission fees, & answer questions about the area including the winter the Lewis and Clark Expedition camped at Fort Clatsop as well as give tours to tour groups. Help with the daily opening and closing of the visitor center and fort. This work occurs all year.
America the Beautiful - National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Volunteer PassThis pass is for volunteers who donate 250 hours on a cumulative basis. Valid for a year from the date of being awarded, it provides access to, and use of, federal recreation sites that charge an Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee. The pass admits the pass holder and passengers in a non-commercial vehicle at per-vehicle fee areas and admits the pass holder plus three other adults at per-person fee areas. Children under 16 are admitted free.
If you are interested in applying to be a Fort Clatsop VIPComplete an application at www.nps.gov/volunteer; or mail your completed application with your resume to:
Fort Clatsop National Memorial
92343 Fort Clatsop Road
Astoria, Oregon 97103