Ottawa County Parks & Recreation

Volunteer Opportunities

Join the Ottawa County Parks Team Today!
Become a Volunteer.

Volunteers provide a critical service to the County Parks. Our goal is to provide you
with a rewarding and meaningful volunteer experience that contributes to the mission
of Ottawa County Parks & Recreation. Contact Melanie Manion for more information. Or, you
can get started by filling out a Volunteer Application. We will contact you once we receive your application.

Along with the volunteer positions listed below, we are looking for Wind Storm Chasers. The wind storm chaser will be called upon to visit an assigned park following severe weather to check for downed trees blocking trials or other park areas.  The chaser reports any issues to parks staff who will clean and make the needed repairs.

Because of the amazing volunteers, we were WOOD TV Connecting with Community Award Finalist.

Current Volunteer Job Descriptions

Nature Education Center Volunteer General Park Volunteer
Aquarium Assistant
Naturalist Guide
Reception Desk
Park Monitor
Sign Painting
Traffic Control
Trail Construction Leader
Trail Construction Worker
Trail Tender

Park Steward
Eastmanville Farm Volunteer Garden Volunteer
Farm Friend
Cemetery Caretaker
Spring Grove
Adam Street Landing
Hemlock Crossing
Hager Park Volunteer  
Playground Inspector  
Weaver House Volunteer  
House Cleaner  
Pigeon Creek Park Volunteer  

Contact Georgia Meyer with questions about current volunteer opportunities.

Volunteer Workday Schedule

The public can also help keep the parks beautiful and combat invasive species. We could use your help!

Volunteer Workdays: 
Help us get our gardens and parks ready for Spring!

April 9, 2016: Spring Grove, 1-3pm - meet near the picnic shelter - CANCELED
April 10, 2016: Hemlock Crossing, 1-3pm -  meet at the Nature Education Center
April 16, 2016: Port Sheldon Natural Area, 1-3pm - meet at the southwest parking lot on 160th, closer to Van Buren

Stewardship Workdays: 
Join us as we continue to remove garlic mustard, an invasive plant threatening the health and beauty of our parks.

May 14, 2016:

  • Garlic Mustard Pull at Hager Park, 10am-12pm - meet at covered picnic shelter on south end of the drive
  • Garlic Mustard Pull at Hemlock Crossing  2pm-4pm - meet near the Nature Education Center

Special Program: Pest to Pesto at Hemlock Crossing 3-4pm

May 21, 2016:

  • May 21: Garlic Mustard Pull @ Tunnel Park, 10am-12pm - meet at south end of parking area, by the woods

Special Program: Pest to Pesto at Tunnel Park, 12-1pm

  • Garlic Mustard Pull at Historic Ottawa Beach, 2-4pm - meet at Black Lake Boardwalk East

Never volunteered for a stewardship workday before? No problem! Here’s what you should know: 

  • Bring work gloves (preferably leather), insect repellent and appropriate outdoor gear.
  • All necessary tools, drinking water and snacks will be provided.
  • No preregistration is required.
  • All ages are welcome, however we do ask that those under 16 are supervised by an adult.
  • Work days are cancelled if raining.

Do you have more questions? Contact Georgia or call (616) 994-4748.

Parks Logo


Parks Visitor Center

  • The Nature
    Education Center
    at Hemlock Crossing
    8115 West Olive Road
    West Olive, MI 49460
  • Tuesday - Saturday:
    9:00am - 5:00pm
    12:00pm - 5:00pm
  • Phone: (616) 786-4847

  • Pigeon Creek Hotline: (616) 738-9531

Administration Office

  • Room 267
    12220 Fillmore St.
    West Olive, MI 49460
  • Monday - Friday:
    8:00am - 5:00pm
  • Phone: (616) 738-4810
    Fax: (616) 738-4812
  • In Ottawa County:
    (888) 731-1001 ext.4810

General Park Hours*

March 1 - October 15
7:00am - 10:00pm
October 16 - February 28
7:00am - 8:00pm
*Some parks close in winter or have hours that vary. Select each park for specific park hours.

Customer Service Survey