Patapsco Valley State Park


Featured Volunteer – Skip Bird

Volunteer Skip BirdHow long have you been a volunteer?
I have been a volunteer for 22+ years, longer than some of the staff have been alive. It all started when I was a young kid growing up.

What do you do for employment?
I have been a teacher, conducted astronomy outreach, adjunct professor, salesman, electronic repairman, and anything that pays for my time.

How long have you lived in the area?
I have lived in the area for 25+ years, longer than anywhere else.

Do you volunteer other places besides Patapsco Valley?
I volunteer at Bear Branch, Cunningham Falls, and Charlotte's Quest.

What is your favorite thing about Patapsco Valley?
The staff.

What volunteer projects are you involved in at Soldiers Delight/Patapsco?
I assist with astronomy projects and sometimes Scales and Tales programs.

Describe one of your favorite volunteer memories with Patapsco.
I enjoy the "wows" I get when someone looks through the telescope and sees the moon, Saturn or even a galaxy for the first time.

Why is it important to you to volunteer?
It gives me something to do the second Saturday of every month, and I enjoy the work.

Message from Park Manager

Do you love the outdoors? Do you get excited about sharing your love of nature with others? Perhaps you have some spare time, and would like to share a little with our park and park visitors.

Volunteers are the heart and soul of Patapsco Valley State Park. They are involved in just about every aspect of park operations. Our volunteers do so many fantastic things within the park. On any given day you can find our volunteer rangers running daily operations, and our volunteer naturalists leading hikes or doing nature crafts. Perhaps you will encounter a member of our volunteer mounted patrol while you are out on the trails, and on that very same hike you might meet our trail maintenance volunteers or even one of our Adopt-a-Trail families. Don’t be surprised to see one of our volunteer photographers snapping pictures of people and nature within the park. If you stop in our visitor center or our nature center you will more than likely meet one of our volunteer docents who will be thrilled to share interesting information about the park.

Do you think your talents are not suited for a park? We have graphic designers, marketing specialists, artists, carpenters, plumbers, stone masons and seamstresses that all have volunteered to help create brochures, build decks and benches, promote our programs to media and even sew curtains for our mini-cabins.

So if you have a little extra time to spare, I invite you to join the Patapsco volunteer family. We would love to have you as part of our team!

Message from the Friends of Patapsco Valley State Park President, Bruce Clopein

The Friends of Patapsco Valley State Park invites you to join us in supporting this vital natural resource. A 501C3 non-profit, The Friends of Patapsco Valley State Park provides charitable gifts to enhance the park's educational and environmental assets. Our group has assisted with dam removal efforts, tree plantings, invasive removal, purchased interpretive displays, supported Eagle Scout projects, and provided materials for the Hilton Nature Center. We encourage you to join us in preserving and protecting Patapsco Valley State Park for future generations. For more information, please contact Bruce Clopein at (443) 517-9963. Visit the Friends of Patapsco Valley State Park's website at:

Volunteer Camp Hosts

Featured Volunteer Opportunity – Camp Hosts

Stake your claim to free camping at Patapsco Valley State Park!

That’s right! Volunteer as a camp host and it’s all yours! Camp hosts are needed through the camping season from April through October. You get a rustic campsite with great nature views provided by the Hilton and Hollofield campgrounds at Patapsco Valley State Park. All you have to do is commit a minimum of one month to camping and bring your own gear. Camp hosts are asked to spend 30 hours a week helping campers, selling firewood and keeping the camping facilities tidy. Priority consideration is given to anyone who can stay longer. The park staff will provide all the training you need. So pitch in as a park volunteer. Sign up for your campsite now by contacting volunteer coordinator, at (410) 465-3287 or by email at

Volunteer Opportunities

With locations in Baltimore, Howard, Carroll, and Anne Arundel counties, Patapsco Valley State Park has a volunteer opportunity for you! Here are just a few of the things you can do:

  • Trailwork
  • Volunteer Ranger
  • Gardening
  • Visitor/Nature Center staffing
  • Photography

To search for volunteer opportunities at this state park and all of the state parks in Maryland, please click here to link to the Volunteer with Maryland State Parks webpage and then click on opportunity search in the volunteer menu on the left side of the page.

We look forward to having you join our volunteer family!

Volunteer Coordinator
Patapsco Valley State Park
8020 Baltimore National Pike
Ellicott City, MD 21043