Volunteer

**Please check the event pages listed and/or the listed contact person in case of any schedule changes or cancellations.**

We sometimes add events mid-month.  To link to a rolling google document with the most complete list of events, click here

Ongoing

Summer  volunteer are needed for the Integrated Monarch Monitoring Program (IMMP).  IMMP is a volunteer citizen science program that provides information on habitat, eggs, larva, and adult monarch surveys, as well as tracking fun things like parasitism and monarch survival by raising larva in captivity. This is a national program, with volunteers all over the United States. We need dedicated volunteers to make this program successful and would love for you to become involved in this research with us! Contact Frances Owen at fowen@co.johnson.ia.us or call 319-645- 1011 to learn more.

Starting June 1 volunteers are needed to staff the Conservation Education Center (CEC) at FW Kent Park on weekend afternoons.  There is no minimum number of days a host must serve.  Hosts make it possible for visitors to explore the educational exhibits inside the CEC.  They provide visitors with maps, brochures and newletters, and answer questions about the park and the flora and fauna (when possible).  This position is ideal for folks who enjoy socializing with others and sharing an enthusiasm for nature. To volunteer, or for more information, phone 319 645-1011 or email kmorrow@co.jonson.ia.us

Starting in June.  FW Kent Park needs volunteers to plant native aquatic plants in their newly renovated lake.  Contact bfreidhof@co.johnson.ia.us to get on his email list for notification of these pop up planting events (the conditions for planting have to be just right so they cannot schedule planting days far in advance).

JUNE


Sun, June 2 2PM-5PM . Turkey Foot Folk School needs volunteers to help at a family camping workshop at big Grove Brewery in Iowa City.  Volunteers to help with supervision of marshmallow roasting, setting up tents, and demoing camp stoves and other gear. If you have questions, or want to volunteer, contact Carolyn at  info@turkeyfootfolkschool.org

Fri, Jun 7 the mussel survey scheduled for this date has been postponed to June 14 (see below) due to high water.

Sat, Jun 8,  9:00AM-11:00AM Photography Bioblitz (Wickiup Hill Nature Center) Calling all citizen scientists! June is pollinator month and we are excited to host a bioblitz to check the health and habitat of Linn County. How can you help? Download iNaturalist on your phone or tablet and meet us at Wickiup Hill.  We will use this technology to take pictures of plants and animals to catalog our biodiversity. The event is free, but registration helps us to plan. Register online at linncountyparks.com (click on BuzzBlitz link). The Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz is organized by the National Recreation and Park Association.  iNaturalist Buzz Blitz Project Page  

Sat, June 8 The IMN roadside clean-up scheduled for this date has been canceled because the roadside is seriously under water!

Sat Jun 8, (time varies depending on task).  Volunteers are needed to help with the Great Iowa River Race.  This race is a multi-agency effort to raise funds for support for the Environmental Education Department of Johnson County Conservation Board.  This department provides thousands of children and adults with free year-round nature programing. Volunteers are needed to staff the check-in table, help with kayak and canoe rental distribution, serve as race photographers, compost educators at lunch.  Some skilled paddlers are required to serve as sweeps. To volunteer phone 319 645 1011 or email kmorrow@co.johnson.ia.us or fowen@co.johnson.ia.us

Fri, Jun 14 9:30 AM-afternoon Voluntees are needed to help with a Mussel survey at the Nature Conservancy’s Swamp White Oak Preserve, Meet at Swamp white Oak office (1620 231st st Letts IA) https://www.nature.org/en-us/get-involved/how-to-help/places-we-protect/land-of-the-swamp-white-oak-preserve/   Bring lunch, gloves, and dress for going into water. Contact Elizabeth Owens Elizabeth.owens@tnc.org (319) 726-3041 (Office) or (319) 213-5961 (Mobile) if you are interested in helping out with this survey.  

 

July

July 7-12 Project AWARE a 5-day river clean up camping/canoe/kayak trip.  Canoes are provided, but you can bring your own if desired.  Meals are catered (if you wish). Each year the focus is on a different river.  This year it is the Boone River (Goldfield to Boone Forks Wildlife Area). Evening programs! Great comradery! Fun in the mud!  More info at https://www.iowaprojectaware.org

Wed, July 10 6:00 p.m. (Conservation Education Center, F.W. Kent Park) Milkweed Matters: Seedballs for RAGBRAI Get your hands dirty and help native pollinator habitat in Iowa by making seedballs! Seedballs made by you will be distributed by bicyclists on this year’s RAGBRAI. This event is hosted in partnership with Milkweed Matters. All ages are encouraged to volunteer! Email inaturalist1@co.johnson.ia.us. to register.

 

Aug

Thur, Aug 1, 6:30 p.m. Build a Bat House (Conservation Education Center, F.W. Kent Park) Come learn about and get involved in bat conservation! Participants will learn a bit about Iowa bats and construct a single chamber bat house for their own house or property. There is a $10 fee for materials for this program. Registration required; to register, call 319- 645-1011 or email inaturalist1@co.johnson.ia.us.

 

 

 

ONGOING VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES

The Bur Oak Land Trust relies on volunteers to work in their office and would love to hear from you! To ensure we make the most of your donated time, please let us know how often you would like to volunteer (e.g. once, twice, a set number of hours, three-hours-per-week, indefinitely) so that we can make sure you have the highest volunteer impact possible.

Contact Tammy Wright at info@buroaklandtrust.org or Susan Spears at susan@buroaklandtrust.org to get started!

Indian Creek Nature Center needs Wednesday Warriors.  These volunteers meet each Wednesday at 1:30pm at Amazing Space to work on light land and maintenance projects such as mulching trails, weeding, seed collecting, etc. Email Jason if you’d like to join in!

Citizen Science Water Monitoring. Volunteers are needed to participate in a new study that will measure nitrate levels in the Clear Creek and Middle Cedar watersheds. Participants in the project, titled Citizen Science: Water Monitoring, will use a smartphone application to detect nitrate levels using their phone’s camera. For more information contact Chris Jones (christopher-s-jones@uiowa.edu or 319-335-0589) or click here

Iowa Raptor Project. Various opportunities. Call 319-624-7178 or email shawn-hawks@uiowa.edu

Raptor Advocacy, Rehabilitation, and Education (RARE).  Various opportunities available.  For more information, go to: http://theraregroup.org/you-can-help/volunteer-opportunities

Indian Grass Hills is a 640 acre prairie restoration project in Iowa county.   Volunteers are needed on a continuing basis to help with invasive plant removal, prairie burns and other projects.  To learn more about this conservation effort go to: indiangrass-hills.orgTo volunteer, email Judy at: jjfigh@mchsi.com

Bur Oak Land Trust needs nature-savvy citizens to fill vacancies on various committees.  Contact Tammy Wright for more information at info@buroaklandtrust.org

US National Phenology Network.  Record your seasonal nature observations into a national public database that students, scientists, reporters, policymakers and others can access. https://www.usanpn.org/node/35

Hawkeye Wildlife Rehabilitators Various projects.  For more information, contact Jean at 319 646 6028 or (319) 848-7463

Firefly Watch Monitor fireflies and submit data to a central database https://legacy.mos.org/fire+flywatch

Swan Watch a citizen science site to record your trumpeter swan sightings http://www.trumpeterswansociety.org/csp-trumpeter-watch.html

The parks in Linn and Johnson counties (see individual parks below) depend on volunteers to provide a high quality experience to their visitors.  Depending on the season, volunteers may be needed to help with:

  • Providing educational programing
  • Trail maintenance or land stewardship
  • Greeting visitors/answering questions/ staffing a gift shop
  • Animal care
  • Office work
  • Special events

Indian Creek Nature Center: http://indiancreeknaturecenter.org/get-involved/volunteer/

Wickiup Hill Learning Center: http://www.mycountyparks.com/County/Linn/Content/Volunteer.aspx

FW Kent Park: Kristin Morrow kmorrow@co.johnson.ia.us or call 319-866-8284

Rochester Cemetery (a beautiful prairie remnant): pkollasch@gmail.com

Hickory Hill Park in Iowa City: Friends.HH.Park@gmail.com

 

Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation: http://www.inhf.org/volunteer/ http://www.inhf.org/what-we-do/protection/support-current-projects/

Take A Kid Outdoors (TAKO): http://takeakidoutdoors.org/about/tako-rewards/

Trees Forever: http://www.treesforever.org/

Iowa DNR: http://www.iowadnr.gov/About-DNR/Volunteer-Opportunities

The Nature Conservancy: https://www.facebook.com/TNCIowa/app/179000048777433/http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/iowa/events/index.htm