Volunteer Naturalist - Maine (Summer Dates)
Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC)
Friday, March 31, 2023 • 6:00pm–7:00pm
About the Event
Volunteer Naturalists help people connect to the natural world around them by leading evening programs and morning nature walks. Two of AMC's lakeside lodges in the Maine Woods, Gorman Chairback and Medawisla, are looking for new Volunteer Naturalists to volunteer for at least two weekends, or equivalent in sets of weekdays, each summer.
With programming focused on evenings and mornings, volunteers have free time during the day (usually about 10am to 4pm) to enjoy the area. Each lodge has waterfront lake access for swimming, boating, and fishing; canoes and kayaks available for guests (and volunteers); and nearby hiking trails ranging from easy/short hikes to longer trails that access mountain summits.
The lodges are pretty remote, and most volunteers live far enough away that they stay overnight (for free) in one of our bunkhouses, along with other guests. Meals are also provided free to volunteers.
In 2021, the International Dark-Sky Association granted International Dark Sky Park status to AMC's 75,000-acre parcel of forestland in Maine's 100-Mile Wilderness, which includes the areas surrounding the lodges. With such spectacular conditions for viewing the night sky, each lodge has a telescope available for volunteers, staff, and guests.
Essential qualifications: the ability to plan and deliver evening programs and nature walks or other activities; a willingness to work with all ages and to adapt programming to engage young kids as well as adults; and an outgoing, friendly personality. Additionally, volunteers must be at least 18 years old, AMC members, and pass a criminal background check. New AMC members are welcome!
Benefits: receive free meals and lodging (shared bunkroom), and retail discounts, while volunteering.
Schedule and Time Commitment: during summer season (July - Aug), volunteer stints are scheduled for the weekends (arrive Friday pm and depart Sunday am) as week as weekdays for durations ranging from 2 nights to 5 nights. Most Naturalists will volunteer twice each summer, with each of those volunteer stints spanning 2 or 3 nights, or they'll volunteer once for a 5-night stretch from Sunday afternoon to Friday morning. Volunteers are welcome and encouraged to add additional dates if they have more availability. Volunteers should be interested in participating in the Volunteer Naturalist program for at least three years.
*Please note the date listed on Nature Groupie is a tentative deadline for expressing interest because the volunteer roster may fill up early. The actual volunteering dates would be in July or August.
Training includes a few online sessions in May/June, as well as an in-person training during the last weekend in June -- that's June 24th for Medawisla volunteers and June 25th for Gorman Chairback volunteers. Discounted lodging is available that weekend.
Some volunteer roles fill up early, so please reach out now if you are interested.