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Volunteer Opportunities

Please keep in mind that the majority of the events below require you to be a registered volunteer at Blandford Nature Center.

To become a registered Volunteer at Blandford Nature Center, please click here!

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  • Michigan Butterfly Workshop Series
    5:30 PM-7:30 PM
    May-02-2017

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    Become a citizen scientist by tracking and recording many of Michigan’s unique butterflies! Created by the Michigan Butterfly Network, this 3-part training will take place on:

    • Introduction & Program Background April 25th 5:30-7:30pm
      • During the first training you will learn what Citizen Science is, why butterfly surveys are needed, and how these surveys are conducted.
    • Butterfly Identification May 2nd 5:30-7:30pm
      • The second training will help you put your butterfly ID skills to the test as you review how to carry out a butterfly survey and finalize your survey routes.
    • Field Training May 13th 1:00-3:00pm
      • The final training will run through a mock survey with guest speaker, Jen Tagett, Citizen Science Coordinator from Kalamazoo Nature Center.

    Help entomologists around the world by collecting real, useable data and becoming a Citizen Scientist today! Program price is a flat fee of $25 which includes 3 training sessions, guest speaker, and Michigan Butterfly Network materials.

    Program open for ages 13 plus

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  • Saturday Drop-In Program
    1:00 PM-3:00 PM
    May-06-2017

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    NEW THIS YEAR! Blandford Nature Center is offering “Saturday Drop-In Programs” throughout this spring. Each Saturday has a different theme and during some of these programs, we would like to open one of the historic buildings (Log Cabin, Schoolhouse, Pioneer Barn, or Blacksmith) so that visitors can experience living history.

    Sign-up to provide BNC visitors with historic interpretation and knowledge on select Saturdays!

    Registered BNC Volunteers Only

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  • Saturday Drop-In Program
    1:00 PM-3:00 PM
    May-13-2017

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    NEW THIS YEAR! Blandford Nature Center is offering “Saturday Drop-In Programs” throughout this spring. Each Saturday has a different theme and during some of these programs, we would like to open one of the historic buildings (Log Cabin, Schoolhouse, Pioneer Barn, or Blacksmith) so that visitors can experience living history.

    Sign-up to provide BNC visitors with historic interpretation and knowledge on select Saturdays!

    Registered BNC Volunteers Only

  • Michigan Butterfly Workshop Series
    1:00 PM-3:00 PM
    May-13-2017

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    Become a citizen scientist by tracking and recording many of Michigan’s unique butterflies! Created by the Michigan Butterfly Network, this 3-part training will take place on:

    • Introduction & Program Background April 25th 5:30-7:30pm
      • During the first training you will learn what Citizen Science is, why butterfly surveys are needed, and how these surveys are conducted.
    • Butterfly Identification May 2nd 5:30-7:30pm
      • The second training will help you put your butterfly ID skills to the test as you review how to carry out a butterfly survey and finalize your survey routes.
    • Field Training May 13th 1:00-3:00pm
      • The final training will run through a mock survey with guest speaker, Jen Tagett, Citizen Science Coordinator from Kalamazoo Nature Center.

    Help entomologists around the world by collecting real, useable data and becoming a Citizen Scientist today! Program price is a flat fee of $25 which includes 3 training sessions, guest speaker, and Michigan Butterfly Network materials.

    Program open for ages 13 plus

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  • Eco-Stewardship Work Day
    5:30 PM-8:00 PM
    May-18-2017

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    Eco-Stewardship work focuses on habitat restoration, trail maintenance, stream clean-up and removal of invasive species (like buckthorn, privet and honeysuckle) on several sections of our 143-acre site. Education is always a major focus of the day as volunteers learn to identify and manage plants that may be growing in their own backyards, their schools or city parks and how those plants and their volunteer efforts directly impact their surrounding environment.

    This volunteer option is for individuals or groups that would like to attend an open volunteer event, like Eco-Stewardship Work Days, without becoming a registered Blandford Nature Center volunteer. Please keep in mind that while a Volunteer Application does not need to be completed, you will still be required to sign a Liability Waiver at these volunteer events.

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  • Farm Work Day
    10:00 AM-1:00 PM
    May-20-2017

    3145 Milo St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49534, USA

    3145 Milo St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49534, USA

    NEW THIS YEAR! We are offering work days on the Blandford Farm for those volunteers that are wanting to get their veggies on and hands dirty. Currently, we will offer these days once a month however there is the potential to add more days as the season becomes busier.  Education is always a major focus of the day as volunteers learn to identify, harvest, and manage produce, herbs, and sometimes, farm livestock. Volunteers will gain knowledge on how those plants, livestock, and their volunteer efforts directly impact their surrounding environment.

    Registered BNC Volunteers Only

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  • FrogWatch USA Citizen Science Observations
    9:30 PM-10:30 PM
    May-26-2017

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    FrogWatch USA is a citizen science program of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). John Ball Zoo hosts an active chapter.

    You don’t have to be an expert to join in FrogWatch and help contribute valuable information to scientists studying amphibians! This citizen science program provides individuals, groups and families the opportunity to learn about wetlands in their communities and report data on the calls of local frogs and toads.

    Volunteers are asked to attend at least one training session; learn the importance of amphibians, identify frog species by their calls and, observe frogs in your area. We ask that volunteers commit to collecting data approximately once a week for about 10 mins during the season. Formal volunteer training sessions are offered in February and March with field trainings in the spring and early summer.

    John Ball Zoo Keeper and BNC Wildlife Volunteer, Keith, will be doing a group observations on the dates listed below. This is a great opportunity to see what FrogWatch is all about and put your listening skills to the test with the help of an expert.

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  • Farm Day Open House
    10:00 AM-1:00 PM
    May-27-2017

    3145 Milo St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49534, USA

    3145 Milo St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49534, USA

    Don’t miss this family-friendly event down on the farm! Meet the goats, chickens and pigs, say “hi” to your local farmers, check out our plant sale, listen to a story, and play some games. This is a great option for a memorial day “stay-cation.”

    Sign-up as a volunteer to make fun farm memories happen!

    volunteer-sign-up-button

  • Saturday Drop-In Program
    1:00 PM-3:00 PM
    May-27-2017

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    1715 Hillburn Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504, USA

    NEW THIS YEAR! Blandford Nature Center is offering “Saturday Drop-In Programs” throughout this spring. Each Saturday has a different theme and during some of these programs, we would like to open one of the historic buildings (Log Cabin, Schoolhouse, Pioneer Barn, or Blacksmith) so that visitors can experience living history.

    Sign-up to provide BNC visitors with historic interpretation and knowledge on select Saturdays!

    Registered BNC Volunteers Only

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June