Kelley isn't from this area, so it didn't occur to her that it was Derby Day when she scheduled it.
She, or Alan, can tell you better about the volunteer opportunities. I'll try to list a few -
First. let me say, that there is training available - you could think of it as an adult continuing education program. If you are familiar with the Indiana Master Naturalist program, it's very similar but with an emphasis on things you need to know to do volunteer work at the park. Geology, archaeology, tree & wildflower identification, bird identification, native American presence, frontier times, just to name a few basic areas - as well as, how to work with visitors. It is estimated that there are about 400,000 visitors to the park every year.
- Roving the fossil beds - answering visitors' questiona and pointing out some of the better fossils - helping them identify fossils
- Leading nature hikes - if you have expertise in birds, wild flowers, trees, etc we have hikes at Charlestown in addition to the nature trail at the Falls
- Office work - answering the phones, making calls, working with spreadsheets. If you've some marketing experience, that would be very welcome.
- School groups - the park had around 15,000 school kids come through last year - volunteers are needed to help with fossil labs, guide them through the center, and help on the fossil beds
- Cleaning, and documenting artifacts
- Giving presentations
- Birding on the deck - identifying birds for visitors and letting them use binoculars & spotting scopes
- Trash pickup - apparently one big gripe from visitors is that we can't clean up all the "presents" that the river deposits every year
- Being at the George Rogers Clark home site (the cabin next to the boat ramp at the end of Harrison) - this is one of the things I do
The need is even greater this year. In addition to budget cuts (DNR is several million $ ishort of what it needs this year), when Gov. Pence gave state empolyees a raise there was no additional funding to cover it. The money had to come out of the existing funds - long story short, they can't hire as many seasonal workers this year as thay have in the past and even lose permanent positions.
Also, with the new exhibits and layout of the Interpretive Center it is expected that more people will be needed to guide visitors through.
Thanks for asking! Hope to see you there.