Interested in managing visitors and volunteers in the natural area you work? NATA has the workshop for you!

Are you a land manager looking to acquire skills in volunteer management? Do you work in a natural area that supports visitors? Do you want to become a better interpreter? Consider attending this year’s Managing Visitors and Volunteers in Natural Areas workshop at Gold Head Branch State Park on May 14-15! This two-day workshop provides guidance on how to integrate visitors and volunteers into natural areas management. Specifically, participants will learn how to plan functional recreation opportunities, including accessible trails and facilities, that aim to enhance the visitor’s experience! Moreover, attendees will develop an understanding of both the advantages and challenges that come with managing a volunteer program. In addition, participants will learn how to maintain a volunteer program in the long-term, with a focus on recruiting, training, and rewarding.

Managing Visitors and Volunteers online training

Participants are required to complete an online component beforehand in order to gain their certificate at the end of the in-person training. The online course will take approximately 8 hours, and participants are given a full month to complete it. This component provides foundational material in the form of videos, and includes opportunities to test your knowledge through optional self-assessments. Once participants complete the required assignments, they are ready to attend the in-person training!

Managing Visitors and Volunteers in-person training
Participants learn about ADA requirements at Gold Head Branch State Park.
Participants learn about ADA requirements at Gold Head Branch State Park.

Gold Head Branch State Park in Keystone Heights serves as the backdrop for this year’s workshop. Experience the park through the eyes of a visitor on the first day field trip, and then gain an introduction into environmental interpretation and volunteer program management on the second day.

Finish out the two-day training with a recreation planning group exercise that reviews workshop concepts and encourages participants to think critically about visitor services and accommodations.

Sunset at Gold Head Branch State Park.
Sunset at Gold Head Branch State Park.

Participants are encouraged to stay overnight in one of the rustic cabins along Little Lake Johnson. Lodging is just $45/person/night and must be done when registering for the workshop. Enjoy a night in a cozy cabin listening to nocturnal wildlife and wake up to a beautiful view of the lake!

Interested in attending?

Great! Register now before spaces fill up! Click on the link here to secure a spot, and don’t forget to pay for lodging! Group discounts are available for multiple attendees from the same organization. To inquire about this discount, contact Check out our calendar on our website for other NATA workshops!


Posted: February 21, 2019

Category: Natural Resources, Professional Development, UF/IFAS Extension
Tags: NATA, Natural Areas Training Academy, Workshops

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