Youth Volunteer Patch Program

a young girl showing off the patch she earnedMissouri State Parks youth volunteer patchIndividuals and organized youth groups, such as Scouts, 4-H groups and Future Farmers of America, now have the opportunity to assist with a variety of projects in a state park or historic site to earn patches. This progam is open to anyone under the age of 18.



How the program works:

  • Youth groups or individuals arrange a work day at a state park or historic site.
  • Upon completion of the project, you will receive a Missouri State Parks Youth Volunteer patch.
  • Each person can complete the program one time.


Below is a list of the possible projects at each state park or historic site.

Arrow Rock State Historic Site
  • Trail work
  • Building maintenance (such as cleaning and treating the furniture)
  • Front desk service
  • Painting
  • Pick up brush
Dr. Edmund A. Babler Memorial State Park
  • Litter pickup on trails
  • Deberm trails
  • Honeysuckle, garlic mustard and other invasive species removal
  • Maintain flower beds at visitor center (weeding, watering, etc.)
  • Maintain gravel walkways around monument
  • Reset gravel and landscaping stones at back of visitor center
Sam A. Baker State Park
  • Trash pick-up in the swimming hole/shut-ins area
  • Exotic species eradication along the bike trail and at the horse camp
  • Special event assistance
  • Graffiti removal from picnic tables
  • Big Creek trash pick-up
  • Visitor center assistance
  • Participate in Keep Baker Beautiful Day event
Battle of Athens State Historic Site
  • Trail work on Snow Trillium Trail – general maintenance/debris removal
  • Trail work on Oxbow Trail at Iliniwek Village State Historic Site – cutting small limbs and debris removal
  • Sweep out six historic buildings
Battle of Lexington State Historic Site
  • Gardening
  • Trimming and pruning foilage
  • Splitting rails
  • Staff visitor center
  • Give tours of the Anderson House
  • Assist with programming
    • Could incorporate site’s geocache in GPS program
    • Could incorporate site’s ropewinder in knots and rope work program
Bennett Spring State Park
  • Litter pick up in the following areas
    • Three fishing zones
    • Campgrounds
    • Along roads
    • Shelter areas
    • Cabin areas
    • River access
Thomas Hart Benton Home and Studio State Historic Site
  • Rake leaves in the fall
  • Spring clean up
Big Lake State Park
  • Debris clean-up
  • Power washing buildings
  • Clean up pool and change house
  • Clean up playground equipment
  • Replace playground border and the level sand
  • Replace boundary signs
  • Clean up and straighten all park signs
  • Painting
Big Oak Tree State Park
  • Trail maintenance: Boardwalk Trail and Bottomland Trail
  • Giant cane planting along the day-use area/natural area boundary
  • Natural area sign replacement/park boundary sign replacement
  • Lake clean-up: debris/trash removal around the lake and cleaning fishing access areas
  • Painting and minor structure repair
Bollinger Mill State Historic Site
  • Assist visitors and staff at special events
  • Clean stream bed
  • Clear vegetation from stream banks
  • Cemetery trail maintenance
  • Clean machinery in mill
  • Site programming – using themes relevant to both the site and their organization
Nathan and Olive Boone Homestead State Historic Site
  • Maintenance on hiking trails
  • Whitewashing of Boone home and yard fence
  • Setup/take down/parking cars at the Homestead Days Festival in October
Bothwell Lodge State Historic Site
  • Assist with special events
    • Operate concession stand
    • Park cars
    • Maintain trails
      • Trash pick up
      • Sweeping out historic structures along trails
      • Cleaning off bench seats
Castlewood State Park
  • Trail cleanup
  • River access cleanup
Confederate Memorial State Historic Site
  • Cleaning the headstones in the cemetery
  • Policing and cleaning up the playground area
  • Policing and cleaning up the Pergola site
Edward “Ted” and Pat Jones – Confluence Point State Park
  • Invasive plant removal (seasonal)
  • Litter collection
  • Restoration planting (seasonal)
Crowder State Park
  • Spring cleaning of Camp Grand River in preparation for on-season
  • Spring cleaning of enclosed shelter house for on-season
  • Trail maintenance to include removal of litter, trimming of branches and informing staff of other issues
  • Spring litter cleanup along park roads and along mowed areas
  • Invasive plant removal
  • Assistance with special events
  • Visitor programming such as:
    • Guided hikes
    • Fishing clinics
    • Orienteering
    • GPS
    • Knots and rope work
Cuivre River State Park
  • Litter patrol
  • Trail work – the park has 36 miles of trail
  • Stewardship projects
    • Evasive species control
    • Seed collection
    • Tree thinning
    • Fish habitat
Current River State Park
  • Trail renovation
  • New trail construction
  • Exotic species removal
Deutschheim State Historic Site
  • Mow lawns
  • Weed site gardens
  • Paint fence
  • Give relevant history program
Dillard Mill State Historic Site
  • Trail maintenance
  • Interpretive programs
    Outdoor skills
    Fishing clinics
    Outdoor cooking
    Leave No Trace
  • Huzzah stream clean-up
Elephant Rocks State Park
  • Braille Trail - maintenance
  • Engine House Trail – maintenance
  • Spring clean-up and readying a park for on-season
  • Stacking wood
  • Invasive plant removal
First Missouri State Capitol State Historic Site
  • Help with site gardens
  • Help with special event
Fort Davidson State Historic Site
  • Brogans’ Trail maintenance
  • Spring clean-up and readying a park for on-season
Graham Cave State Park
  • Spring clean-up in preparation for the on-season
  • Fall clean-up at end of camping season
  • Trail maintenance
  • Fire line preparation
  • Invasive plant removal
  • Minor maintenance and cleaning
  • Painting
  • Visitor programming, such as:
    • Outdoor skills
    • Outdoor cooking
    • Leave No Trace
    • History
    • GPS
    • Guided Hikes
Grand Gulf State Park
  • Interpretive programming
  • Trail maintenance
  • Park cleanup
  • Exotic species removal
Ha Ha Tonka State Park
  • Post Office Day-Use Area Grooming
  • Pick up litter along roadsides
Hawn State Park
  • Trail work – clearing and maintaining trails
  • Install logs (water bars) for erosion control in day-use area
  • Litter pick up
  • Paint and stain bridges/structures
  • Plant willow cuttings along creek
  • Build campsite tent pads
  • Transplant pine trees for restoration (November)
Hunter-Dawson State Historic Site
  • Weeding, cultivating and mulching the flower beds, herb garden and other plants and flowers in the house and office area.
Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park
  • Clear trails
  • Build trails
  • Work with recycling (sort)
  • Make/set up benches for fire ring
  • Gravel a walkway to the fire ring
  • Make/place posts for Horseshoe Glade Trail podcast
  • Ditch around mosaics
  • Plant/maintain wildflower garden; includes preparing a place/bed for it
Katy Trail State Park – Western Section

Managed out of Knob Noster State Park

  • Spring clean-up and readying the park for on-season
  • Litter patrol
  • Trail duty – walk trail and inform full-time staff of downed trees and any other problems
  • Visitor Programming
    • Invasive Species Detection and Removal – Bush Honeysuckle, Johnson grass, etc.
    • Equestrian Dos and Don’ts - followed by a ride on equestrian section of the trail
    • Bicycle Maintenance 101 followed by a bike ride on the trail
    • Katy Trail State Park history
Knob Noster State Park
  • Plant/fungus identification and utilization
    • Use MDCs cookbook “Missouri’s Wild Mushrooms” to cook small meal as an example of resource available to visitors
    • Use wild mushrooms found in the park
  • Invasive Species Detection
  • Assist with managed deer hunt
  • Visitor programming
  • Guided hikes – any or all trails, longer hikes could be planned with McAdoo Trail or Opossum Hollow Trail
  • Equestrian Dos and Don’ts followed by a ride on McAdoo Trail
  • Bicycle Maintenance 101 followed by a bike ride on Opossum Hollow Trail
  • Fire building
  • Outdoor cooking – Dutch oven cooking, etc.
  • Orienteering – KNSP has two courses, which would be good for the patch
  • GPS – could be used for a scavenger hunt
  • Leave No Trace – An overnight program could be held in the Special-Use Area
  • Knob Noster SP history – park’s importance to WPA era
    • Spring clean-up and readying a park for on-season
  • Cleaning fire rings in campground
  • Removing large sticks/branches from campground area
  • Detail clean specific buildings, such as showerhouses, Visitor Center, vault toilets, etc.
    • Stacking wood – for park shop
    • Assistance with a specific area of the park
  • Special-use area: check for litter
  • Lake(s): check for litter
  • Group camp(s): check for litter
    • Invasive plant removal, bush honeysuckle, teasel, etc.
    • Minor maintenance, such as
  • Trail work
  • Basic maintenance/building
  • Trail duty – walk trail and inform full-time staff of downed trees and any other problems
    • Staffing the Visitor Center: weekends during on-season
    • GPS specific themed sites of interest and create an activity associated with those sites (examples – historical tour of park or a winter GPS trail to areas off the beaten path that have some significance to the park.
    • Equestrian training workshops – leave no trace, guided trail ride with cookout somewhere along the trail
    • Solar energy program – or have a group build some type of equipment
    • Wood working program – building animal houses, then naturalist would do a whole day of wildlife activities
    • Mushroom program
Lewis and Clark State Park
  • Litter and debris cleanup on the lake shoreline and/or park grounds
  • General cleanup of campground in the late fall (leaf cleanup, etc.)
  • Spring clean-up and readying a park or the campground for on-season
  • Stacking wood/preparing the campground for on-season
  • Assistance with a specific area of the park as needed
  • Invasive plant removal at the interpretive plaza, bottomland restoration area and native tall grass prairie
  • Minor maintenance, cleaning and possibly small construction projects
  • Painting
  • Trail work
  • Waterfront maintenance
  • Visitor programming such as
    • Outdoor skills
    • Guided hikes
    • Fishing clinics
    • Fire building
    • Outdoor cooking
    • Orienteering
    • GPS
    • Leave No Trace
    • Knots and rope work
    • History of Lewis & Clark’s voyage through the area (significance of the park)
Lake of the Ozarks State Park
  • Pick up trash in the campground
  • Pick up trash along lake shore
  • Clean fire rings in campground and Pin Oak Hollow
  • Sort aluminum cans
Lake Wappapello State Park
  • Backpack camp construction and repair existing backpack camps along the backpack trail
  • Retaining wall construction and landscaping at varied locations
  • Trail clearing – 25 miles of trail that could be adopted and the need to clean large amounts of flood debris off of the trails
  • Landscape project to plant trees in campground and mulch around trees
  • Bulletin board construction and placement – use of state park design is required
  • Repaint parking stripes on park’s parking lots
  • Paint jobs
  • Pour a hopscotch play area at the campground
  • Build some benches and have them placed at the appropriate locations in the park (Park must approve design)
  • Repair seats in the amphitheater
  • Roadside clean-up along the route to the park

Individual Projects:

  • Produce interpretive materials to distribute to the public (for example: Design and make 1,000 buttons to give out on stopping the spread of the emerald ash borer; example 2: Design a park safety coloring book or fishing “how to” coloring book to give to park visitors)
  • Visit the park during each of the seasons and help create a bird list for the park that could be put in checklist format and distributed. Observe and identify all the birds you can during your visits.
  • Design and run a recycling program for our park for one full year (vacation season)
  • Make a display for the park on water safety
Locust Creek Covered Bridge State Historic Site

Managed out of Gen. John J. Pershing Boyhood Home State Historic Site

  • Pick up trash
Long Branch State Park
  • Assist with management of a natural area
    • Invasive species control
    • Seed collection
    • Seed planting
    • Boundary line management
      • Ensure that signs are up
      • Look for encroachment
      • Remove undesirable vegetation
Mastodon State Historic Site
  • Invasive plant removal
  • Trail maintenance
  • Assist with interpretive activities in the museum annex (mainly Saturday hours)
Meramec State Park
  • Painting
  • Cleanup an area, such as Cane Bottom
  • Stacking wood
Montauk State Park
  • Stream cleanup
  • Trash pickup and maintenance along hiking trails
  • Clean the mill
  • Paint buildings
  • Water flowerbeds
  • Help at special events
  • Eradicate invasive species
  • Assist with nature programs
  • Remove branches with hanging line and hooks from stream bank
  • Plant native trees and flowers
Morris State Park
  • Trail maintenance:  Beech Tree Trail
  • Construct and place bridges/water crossings at points on the trail
  • Tree planting at a small reclamation area
  • Invasive plant species removal
Onondaga Cave State Park
  • Glade restoration
  • Exotic species removal
  • Litter cleanup along highway
  • Wildflower garden work
  • Trail work
  • Cave cleanup
  • Assist with Haunted Cave Tours
  • River bank cleanup
Pershing State Park
  • Spring clean-up of the campground – trash removal, cleaning fire rings, trimming limbs, etc.
  • Spring clean-up to open the shower house – thorough clean inside and out
  • Spring clean-up of the shelter house – thorough clean inside and out
  • Clean up along the boardwalk – trash removal, trim limbs, minor maintenance, clean displays, etc.
Pomme de Terre State Park
  • Paint buildings
  • Shoreline cleanup
  • Trail maintenance
Prairie State Park
  • Improve wet crossings on trails with stones or other means
  • Forb or grass seed collection
  • Keep the picnic area cleaned up
  • Monitor or do light upkeep on trail
  • Catch critters for the nature center – food items for animals already there
  • Pick up trash along county roads and throughout park
  • Assist with Prairie Jubilee or other events
    • Maintain a booth
    • Pick up litter
    • Greet people
    • Take meals and water to stations
    • Do face painting
    • Assist people getting on the trailers for the bison tours
Roaring River State Park
  • Paint or stain benches 
  • Pick up trash 
  • Trail maintenance 
  • Campground projects 
  • Special event assistance 
  • River clean-up 
Robertsville State Park
  • Collect nuts from specific oak, hickory, buckeye and walnut trees
  • Plant trees in specific areas of park
  • Invasive plant removal
  • Paint and waterproof park structures
  • Lead guided interpretive hikes
  • Assist with special events
Rock Bridge Memorial State Park
  • Invasive plant control
  • Old fence wire removal
  • Assist with programs if youth have applicable skills (i.e. orienteering, GPS, Leave No Trace)
  • Assist with wildflower seed collection
Route 66 State Park
  • Playground and picnic area maintenance
  • Trail maintenance
  • Litter removal
  • Downed limb removal from mowed areas
St. Francois State Park
  • Assist with general maintenance
  • Assist in fee booth
  • Mowing and trimming
  • Trash collection and removal
  • Trail maintenance
  • Removal of invasive yucca in fen area
  • Assist naturalist with interpretive programs
  • Assist with restoring glade
St. Joe State Park
  • Pick up litter
  • Minor cleaning of restrooms
  • Trail work
Stockton State Park
  • Trail construction (pending clearance)
  • Lakeshore clean-up
  • Clean up special-use area (remove downed wood and improve area)
Table Rock State Park
  • Litter cleanup in campground and on shoreline of Table Rock Lake
  • Invasive plant removal
  • Trail work on the White River Valley or Table Rock Lakeshore trails
Thousand Hills State Park
  • Litter removal
  • Lake clean up
  • Trail work
  • Invasive plant removal
  • Projects with park naturalist
Trail of Tears State Park
  • Litter patrol
  • Trail building/maintenance
  • Invasive species removal
  • Interpretive programs (with appropriate training)
  • Special event assistance
Harry S Truman Birthplace State Historic Site
  • Pick up litter
  • Water flowerbeds
  • Sweep sidewalks
  • Wash outside windows in historic home
Harry S Truman State Park
  • Shoreline cleanup
  • Trail maintenance
  • Paint buildings
Mark Twain State Park/Mark Twain Birthplace State Historic Site
  • Count firewood    
  • Load recycled materials              
  • Spring clean-up of buildings and grounds
  • Invasive plant removal
  • Painting               
  • Trail work
  • Staff museum
  • Campsite rehab    
  • Vehicle maintenance(cleaning, checking fluids, etc)
Annie and Abel Van Meter State Park
  • Assist at special event programs
  • Do research for a temporary exhibit
  • Maintain fire lanes
  • Maintain trouble spots on the trails
Wakonda State Park
  • Roadway edges - litter patrol
  • Trails - litter patrol and minor maintenance
  • Lake shores - litter patrol
  • Campground - litter patrol and minor maintenance
Wallace State Park
  • Trail clean-up – walk a trail and pick up litter and remove small branches from trail
  • Day-use area clean-up – pick up litter and remove small branches from mowing area
  • Color a park poster – Don’t Kill the Snakes, Please Don’t Pick the Wildflowers, Park Program poster
Washington State Park
  • Conduct programs, such as weekday youth fishing clinics, guided hikes of Opossum Track or Thousand Steps Trail, orienteering
  • Plant and/or wildlife survey of the glades
  • Waterline cleanup
  • Pick up litter in the park
  • Perform a nature play at the amphitheater (several to choose from)
Watkins Woolen Mill State Historic Site/Watkins Mill State Park
  • Pick up litter around bicycle trail
  • Pick up litter around lake shore
  • Pick up litter in campground
  • Clean fire rings in campground
  • Whitewash fence
  • Build replacement benches for the amphitheater
  • Assist with wedding heirloom garden
  • Assist with the removal of invasive species
  • Paint exterior trim on the school
  • Build new repro privies for church and school yards
  • Paint window sashes and glaze window panes in the mill
  • Replace board/batten exterior siding on garden shed
  • Assist with installing borders for the flower and vegetable beds in the heirloom garden
Weston Bend State Park
  • Brush clearing/trail maintenance on park trails
  • Installation of water bars/erosion prevention projects on park trails
  • Litter pickup
  • Fall campground cleanup: leaf removal, litter removal, cleaning of fire grills
  • Painting of park structures
  • Replacing of park fence (rotted sections)
  • Painting of parking lot stripes
  • Plant/ animal surveys
  • Invasive species removal
  •   Evening campground interpretive program
  •   Special event setup, cleanup and activities