Featured Volunteer Opportunities

To sign-up or for more information about any of the following opportunities and training, contact the volunteer office at 440.602.8003 or by email at rott@holdenarb.org (unless noted otherwise).


2015 Summer Junior Volunteer Program – Applications Available Jan. 12

We are now seeking outstanding high school students who love nature, trying new things and want to make a difference to join Holden’s Summer Junior Volunteer program. Junior Volunteers serve two or three half-day shifts a week in an assignment that matches their interests or career goals, and get to take part in fun weekly outings to explore Holden and meet different staff. In the past, students served in horticulture, conservation, the nursery, education, marketing and administration. Program lasts six-weeks, June 15 - July 31, 2015. Application and details will be available online, or can be requested from the volunteer office at 440.602.8003, in mid-January and due March 1.


Goose Management Program

Come get regular exercise during the early winter months while lending a hand to our conservation department! Geese cause damage to Holden's gardens, create a nuisance with their feces, and can become aggressive once eggs are laid. During low light conditions, a laser pointed near a goose when its dark will scare the goose and make it fly away. From mid-February through April, volunteers are needed once or twice a week to walk around in pairs at dawn (6-7am) or twilight (7-8pm) and use provided laser pointers to discourage geese from nesting around our ponds and Corning Lake. On-the-job training provided and day of the week is flexible.  


Holden Green Team

2014 Kick-off/Training: Thursday, Jan 23, 2pm or 6pm, Corning Visitor Center.

If you enjoy sharing how much you love Holden, we need you! Development and our Brand Experience staff are looking for more volunteers to join the Holden Green Team. Green Team members recruit members and distribute marketing materials at events on site and in the community. They may also assist the guest relations staff by delivering/posting flyers and brochures to community sites. Attendance at one of the one-hour kick-off/training sessions is required, after which volunteers may sign up for events as their schedule allows.


Sign-up for Spring Events Beginning Feb. 1.

After Feb. 1, we will begin signing up volunteers for the events below. Email rott@holdenarb.org or call the volunteer office at 440.602.8003 to sign-up or get more info.  Student volunteers welcome!


Pancake Supper ~ March 20, 4-8pm

Pancake Breakfasts ~ March 21 & 22, 7:30am to 1pm

Volunteers needed to check-in guests, serve food, pour coffee or help bus tables, lead hikes and more. Complimentary meal provided.


Arbor Day Celebration ~ April 25 & 26, 9:30am-1pm or 12:30-4pm

Volunteers may assist with family activities, pass out tree seedlings, shuttle guests, parking and more. Complimentary snacks and refreshments provided.


Plant Sale ~ May 15-17, 9:30am-1pm or 12:30-4pm

Assist vendors/staff, park cars, bring plants from vendors to holding tent, sell raffle tickets, and more. Complimentary snacks and refreshments provided.


Tree Tale Tellers

Love books, goofy songs and interacting with young children? Join the Tree Tale Teller team! Tree Tale Tellers present tree-themed story times and information about Holden’s Arbor Day Celebration at area libraries during the months of March and April. Story hours last about 30 minutes and are offered in Geauga, Lake and Cuyahoga counties. Weekday availability, attendance at brief training session in early March and reliable transportation required.


Arbor Care Specialist

Individuals who love trees, and are interested in an active position with the opportunity to make a difference are invited to consider becoming Volunteer Arbor Care Specialists with our community forestry program. The purpose of this new program is to provide quality tree care and increase public awareness and appreciation for sustainable urban forests in communities and municipalities facing financial and political constraints. Arbor Care Specialists will be trained to provide tree benefit calculations, tree inventories, small tree plantings and basic care, and outreach/education on the value and importance of trees to a community. Completion of an eight-hour training session and participation in volunteer projects required to earn specialist designation; additional coursework will be offered in the future for volunteers to expand their skills and earn additional qualifications.


VIP Guides

2015 Training: Saturdays, April 18, May 2, June 6 and Sept. 26, 9am-4pm 

VIP (Volunteer Interpretive Person) guides share with guests Holden’s history, mission and horticulture highlights through a one-hour tram or one and a half hour walking tour of the gardens and grounds. Training includes attending four training sessions and shadowing of veteran guides. Guides each bring their unique perspectives and experience. No previous guiding experience necessary, but strong communication skills and an interest in talking to and sharing information with others are important. Physical demands vary by tour, but mobility and ability to work outside is required. Note: must be able to attend a minimum of three out of the four classes and make up missed class through additional shadowing.


Volunteer Gardeners

On-going, April-November 

Weed, water and plant alongside staff horticulturists in your favorite Holden garden! A knowledge of and interest in perennials and gardening experience is helpful, but no experience is necessary. Come get some exercise, learn a few things to take back to your home garden and enjoy working with fellow garden lovers. Work session days and times are as follows:




Display Garden


David G. Leach

Research Station



Garden Partners (Display Garden)


Helen S. Layer Rhododendron Garden


Layer Rhododendron Garden


Arlene and Arthur S. Holden Butterfly Garden



School Guides

School Guides lead students through Holden’s ponds, forests and fields and teach them about the wonders of our natural world using hands-on activities. Training includes one full-day training session in early Spring and shadowing of current guides as desired. Must be available on weekday morning and afternoons.



Please contact Robin Ott, volunteer coordinator at 440.602.8003 or at rott@holdenarb.org to sign up or get more information about any of the above opportunities.


This page is updated as new volunteer opportunities arise. Be sure to check this page often. Thank you.