Managing Visitors and Volunteers NATA workshop to be offered in May

Are you interested in learning more about recreation planning? Would you like to discover insight on how to maintain a volunteer program long-term? Maybe you’re curious about how to create informative interpretive programs for park visitors? If none of those get your attention, then does staying in a cabin at Gold Head Branch State Park sound like fun? Yes? Well, great! You can register now for the upcoming Managing Visitors and Volunteers workshop in May!


This workshop provides guidance on how to integrate visitors and volunteers into natural areas management. This workshop is offered in a hybrid format, meaning both the online and in-person trainings are required in order to receive your certificate of course completion. The online component is completed before the in-person training; expect to invest approximately 10 hours for this segment.

People at a pavillion
Instructors Taylor Stein (UF) and Donald Forgione (Tailgate Talks) lead participants on the field trip around the park.

The two-day in-person training will take place at Gold Head Branch State Park in Keystone Heights on May 13-14. The nature of this workshop is very hands-on! Our two knowledgeable instructors will lead participants on a field trip around the park and discuss its natural and cultural resources, accessibility, recreation opportunities, and more. Furthermore, participants will be divided into groups where they will be charged with developing their own recreation plan. Presentations on volunteer program management, environmental interpretation, and recreation resource management will be sprinkled throughout the two days so that participants aren’t sitting all day. This workshop is often applauded for its dynamic and engaging structure.


Registration is done through Eventbrite here. The cost ranges from $275-$365, depending on whether or not lodging is desired. We definitely encourage those requiring lodging to stay overnight in the park in one of the cabins! They are situated along Lake Johnson and are very peaceful. We offer a chance for networking at the optional group dinner on the first night, and follow-up with a campfire in the park. It’s really fun and a great way for participants to relax, get to know one another, and unwind from the day. For those needing Wi-Fi or desiring a more modern arrangement, there are several hotel options in the area. Registration ends April 9, or when the workshop reaches capacity.

For more information, please visit the Eventbrite page here. Still have some questions? Contact the NATA workshop coordinator at or call (850)875-7153.


Posted: February 20, 2020

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

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