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Tamarack Trick-or-Treat Event

Saturday, October 24, 2 – 6 p.m.
Each year, Tamarack hosts a special non-spooky Halloween party for children and their adults. Volunteers are needed to pass out treats along the treat trail, press apples for cider, lead games and activities. Non-scary costumes are welcome and encouraged!

Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator at 651-407-5350 for more information and to RSVP.

Garlic Mustard Work Day

Saturday, October 10, 9 a.m. – noon
We need volunteers to help uproot as many garlic mustard (and other invasive plants) as possible. This is our last work day of the season for the non-woody invasive plants. Volunteers should wear long pants and sturdy shoes and dress for the weather.

Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator at 651-407-5350 for more information and to RSVP.

Buckthorn Brigade

Saturday, November 7, 10 a.m. – noon
Volunteers will learn all about buckthorn, how to identify smooth and common varieties, and how to control and dispose of this  invasive woody plants. Then we will tackle some buckthorn at Tamarack! Volunteers should wear long pants and sturdy shoes, and dress for the weather.

Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator at (651)407-5350 for more information and to RSVP. ​

Invasive Plant Patrol

Ages: Adults and older teens (kids under 15 need to be accompanied by an adult)
Time commitment: Ongoing, dates to be determined (spring, summer, fall)
Training: Spring training April 25, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Training provided by Ramsey County Cooperative Weed Management.
Pre-registration required; e-mail Melanie Harding for more information or to register.
Requirements: Ability to bend, walk uneven terrain and use hand tools.

A few of our volunteers have been hard at work tackling invasive plants at Tamarack, and they could use your help! Garlic Mustard and Buckthorn are at the top of the list right now, but as time permits, we’ll tackle others too. We are looking to assemble a volunteer team to tackle whatever invasive plants rise to the top of the priority list. If you like to be outside, doing physical work, this might be the volunteer job for you!​

Naturalist Volunteer (School & Group Programs)

Ages: Adult (18 and older)
Time commitment: Weekdays; volunteers commit to a season at a time (spring, summer, fall, winter); 3+ shifts per season; 2-6 hours each time.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of each season on select programs; other programs will be introduced through on-the-job training. 
Requirements: Joyful, positive, flexible personality; weekday availability; enjoy working with young students in a group setting, especially preschoolers and early elementary grades; ability to communicate with young children and adapt appropriately in a dynamic setting; willingness to lead or co-lead a small group of students through a lesson or activity (or willingness to learn how to lead).

Weekdays at Tamarack are filled with young students visiting for fun, educational programs, and volunteers are important members of the teaching team that works with those groups. Naturalist Volunteers are trained to facilitate specific aspects of our school and summer programs for groups, like making apple cider, playing a group game, taking a bird hike, or dipping for critters in the lake. By doing the same activities recurrently, volunteers have the chance to gain valuable confidence and skills that will transfer to new programs in the future.​

Ski & Snowshoe Rental Attendant

Ages: Adults (18 and older); youth ages 15-17; age 12-14 with an adult
Time commitment: Late December through early March; 3+ shifts per season; 2-3 hours each time; mostly weekends
Training: Training in mid-late December (date to be determined) 
Requirements: Friendly, customer-service oriented personality; some knowledge of cross country skis and snowshoes helpful, but not required

Volunteers team up with our staff to run the Ski & Snowshoe Shack, where visitors come to rent equipment for a winter adventure out on the trails. Volunteers assist customers with the fitting of skis and snowshoes, and recommend trails based on conditions and experience levels. Volunteers also have the option of patrolling the trails on a pair of skis to report trail conditions during their shifts.​

Maple Syrup Volunteer

Positions available: Sap Collector, Sap Evaporator, Sap Finisher
Ages: Sap Collecting is great for all ages and for families; children under 15 must be accompanied by an adult; Evaporators and Finishers must be adults (18 and older)
Time commitment: varies, usually early March through late April; time commitment and shifts depend on the position; weekday and weekend shifts available; 3+ shifts per season, Sap Collectors generally work 1-2 hours each time; Evaporators and Finishers work half-day or day-long shifts 
Training: Training provided on Saturday, February 27, 10 a.m. – Noon
Requirements: Sap Collectors need to be able to walk about 1 mile on snow or uneven trails pulling a wagon of supplies; some hauling and lifting required; Sap Evaporators must be able to stand or sit for long periods and consistently tend a fire; Sap Finishers should have some knowledge of the canning process

Once the sap starts flowing in early spring, volunteers visit the sugar bush daily to collect from tapped maple trees. Sap is hauled and stored in the Sugar Shack, where Evaporators cook it slowly over a fire to begin the process of making syrup. Finishers work in the kitchen to complete the final cooking process and to preserve the finished syrup. 

How to Volunteer

All volunteer service on nature preserve grounds needs to be directed through Ramsey County Parks and Recreation.

Submit completed application to:
Mail: 5287 Otter Lake Road, White Bear Township, MN 55110
Fax: (651) 407-5354
Call: Melanie Harding​, Volunteer Coordinator at (651) 407-5350 x118


Contact Us

5287 Otter Lake Road
White Bear Township, MN 55110
Phone: 651-407-5350
Fax: 651-407-5354
Email: tamarack@co.ramsey.mn.us