Have fun and do good

Volunteer opportunities available now

Do you want to help support our local state parks and beaches, meet new people, do something new and have a ton of fun in the process? Then we need you!

Volunteering for Friends events and activities is fun and rewarding. For just a few hours per month, you will help protect and preserve our beautiful Santa Cruz County and coastal San Mateo County state parks and beaches for now and future generations to enjoy and cherish.

There are various events and activities that we need your help with. If you are over the age of 18 and interested in becoming a Friends volunteer, please fill out our volunteer application.

Current State Parks Volunteer Opportunities

Get involved at Castro Adobe State Historic Park

Assist with class visits, private tours and special events as a docent at Castro Adobe State Historic Park. This involves sharing the stories of the families who made the Castro Adobe home, preparing tortillas and hot chocolate in the restored cocina, leading games and craft activities, event set-up and take-down, and more. Volunteer opportunities are flexible and come up at least monthly. Prospective docents should fill out this applicationA four-hour docent training will be held 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 8, but volunteers may begin at any time.

Lend a hand at Portola Redwoods and Castle Rock state parks

Castle Rock and Portola Redwoods state parks are recruiting volunteers to share the natural and human history of these parks with visitors. Volunteers will walk the trails, provide a State Parks presence, share information with visitors, report issues and help keep the parks pristine. Volunteers may also assist with the new school field trip program at Castle Rock and serve as hosts at the Portola Redwoods Visitor Center. Please call (831)291-8273 or email for more information. Volunteer training will be Saturdays in April.

Volunteer with the Trail Crew (must be 18 years of age or older)

Since 1969 the Big Basin Volunteer Trail Crew has helped make it possible for others to safely enjoy the beauty of our park. The Trail Crew meets the second Saturday of each month, rain or shine. A typical workday lasts from 9 a.m. until mid-afternoon. Please bring your own work gloves, lunch and water. Join us for a unique perspective of Big Basin, a lively and productive experience with others who share a love of these redwood forests, and the satisfaction of participating in a vital part of the park’s ability to educate and inspire the public! Meet at Park Headquarters. Confirm dates and times.

Help maintain the Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail

Join the Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail maintenance group the first Saturday of every month to work on various sections of the 29.5-mile trail. The trail travels through Castle Rock State Park, Big Basin Redwoods State Park and the Rancho Del Oso Unit. Volunteers should wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, boots or sturdy shoes, hats and sunscreen. Please bring work gloves, water and lunch. Contact Al at 408-25208106 or by email for specific locations and times.

Join the Wilderness Patrol

Wilderness Patrol Volunteers hike and/or mountain bike into scenic backcountry within state parks in the Santa Cruz County District. With a minimum commitment of six hours/month, you will join a team of active docents whose goal is to contribute to the inspiration, education and enjoyment of parks visitors. Trainings will take place six Saturdays this spring at various state parks. Training will be 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Review the requirements and apply.