Local park volunteers recognized during state awards

The Washington and Recreation Commission recently recognized 2 volunteers for their local work during their 2016 Volunteer Recognition Awards.

In a release they say, “Each year, volunteers contribute hundreds of thousands of hours to improve state parks across Washington.”

Volunteers work within parks cleaning campsites and beaches, trail maintenance, assisting with special events, serving as camp hosts, and many other jobs.

Locally, Yakima resident Judi Whitehouse received special mention for her work at  Beach State Park, , and State Park, and Don and Rose Myers of South Bend were mentioned for their work at Grayland Beach State Park.

“I’m always amazed at how dedicated our volunteers are,” said Cindy Jorgensen, Volunteer Program Manager. “They care deeply about the parks and work hard to assist park staff to keep the park system running. With a wide range of interests, they help with everything from assisting in the office to boots on the ground in the parks. They are an exceptional group of people.”

Each year, State Parks staff nominate volunteers for the awards. Volunteers will be presented with their awards during Commission meetings or special occasions over the next few months, including recognition events at parks and at the annual Camporee, a gathering for campground hosts held each spring in advance of the busy season.

 

The 2016 Volunteer Recognition awardees for 2016 are:

Individual Awards:

Volunteer of the Year

Dick , Fort Casey Historical State Park, Coupeville, Island county

Lives in: Oak Harbor

Malone volunteers in the State Parks’ Central Whidbey Area as part of the Fort Casey Volunteer Battalion and the Admiralty Head Lighthouse group for about 20 years. At 85 years young, he is well known in the park for his energy and drive. Malone  was instrumental in many restoration projects at the park, including getting the lantern house replaced, acting as a docent at the lighthouse and with Fort Casey’s volunteer battalion, a group of mostly retired military people who give walking tours of the history of the fort.

Interpretive Volunteer of the Year

Audrey Anna Rabalais, Cama Beach Historical State Park, Camano Island, Island county

Lives in: Kirkland

In her first year of volunteering at Cama Beach, Audrey Anna Rabalais contributed 400 hours of volunteer time to the park. Described by park staff as “creative, flexible and wonderful with people,” Rabalais created a Nature Journal Program, increased interpretive programming and developed wide and varied activities for numerous audiences.

Hosts of the Year

Bert and Cathy Miller, Fort Worden Historical State Park, Port Townsend,

Live in: Shelton

The Millers have been campground hosts at Fort Worden since 2003, and their combined hours add up to 6,404. Some of the couple’s notable highlights as volunteers include working closely with the Fort Worden Public Development Authority (PDA) during the transition of responsibilities from the park to the PDA; furthering State Parks’ “Clean, Green and be Seen Initiative” by clearing brush and invasive plants, filling potholes and numerous other tasks; assisting with annual fire pumper training and more.

Hosts of the Year

Willie and Susan Salmond, Kanaskat-Palmer State Park, Ravensdale, King county

Live in: Auburn

The Salmonds completed their first hosting assignment in 2013 at Kanaskat-Palmer. After a short break, they returned to camp hosting at the park in 2016. They have a combined total of 1,079 volunteer hours. The couple was instrumental in expanding vending sales at the camp host site. Willie Salmond drives through the campground selling firewood. The couple is quite popular with visitors, and many campers like to book their visits to the park when the Salmonds are on duty.

Rookie Host of the Year

Marti Lindhorst, Riverside State Park, Nine Mile Falls, Spokane county

Lives in: Spokane

Lindhorst just started hosting in 2016, at both Riverside and Fort Ebey State Park and has already contributed 1,208 hours of volunteer time. While at Riverside, she performed general hosting duties and assisted with the Spokane House Interpretive Center. She made time to attend training for Leave No Trace, Camporee, interpretive workshops, and maps and compass training. Some of her accomplishments include selling $5,000 worth of Discover Passes at the park’s Dirty Dash and 24-Hour Mountain Bike Race and creating maps for the park’s equestrian trail.

Group Awards:

Group of the Year

Friends of Fort Worden, Fort Worden Historical State Park, Port Townsend, Jefferson county

Volunteers from the Friends of Fort Worden play an instrumental role in the success of this popular park in a variety of ways, including operating the park’s gift shop, routinely cleaning trails, removing noxious weeds and conducting park tours. In addition, the Friends group purchased dog-waste bags, developed a printed detailed map of the park and also developed an ADA-accessible map of the park’s trails.

Outstanding Contribution by a Group

Washington Trails Association, Beacon Rock, Skamania, Skamania county

Volunteers from Washington Trails Association (WTA) dedicated more than 800 hours in 2016 to keep Beacon Rock State Park’s trails safe by maintaining trails and bridges. They worked extensively to help repair badly eroded switchbacks on the Hardy Trail high into the backcountry. They also spent many hours on the Hamilton Mountain Trail, which gets used by more than 1,000 people weekly, making it one of the most hiked trails in the Columbia River Gorge.

Additional awards:

Outstanding Contribution by an Individual

Dick Hagener, Dash Point State Park, Federal Way, King county

Lives in: Tacoma

Outstanding Contribution by an Individual

Lindy Adelmann, Fort Worden Historical State Park, Port Townsend, Jefferson county

Lives in: Port Townsend

Outstanding Contribution by an Individual

Tim Woods, Riverside State Park, Nine Mile Falls, Spokane county

Lives in: Nine Mile Falls

Outstanding Contribution by an Individual

Steven Kobylk, Fort Casey Historical State Park (Battalion Group and Admiralty Head Lighthouse), Coupeville, Island county

Lives in: Coupeville

Special Mention

Ted Klump, Beacon Rock State Park, Skamania, Skamania county

Lives in: Vancouver

Special Mention

Maddie Rose, Deception Pass State Park, Island and Skagit counties

Lives in: Oak Harbor

Special Mention

Mark Doss, Fort Worden Historical State Park, Port Townsend, Jefferson county

Lives in: Bremerton

Special Mention

Judi Whitehouse, Grayland Beach State Park, Grayland, and Twin Harbors State Park, Westport, Grays Harbor county

Lives in: Yakima

Special Mention

Don and Rose Myers, Grayland Beach State Park. Grayland, Grays Harbor County

Live in: South Bend

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