As part of National Volunteer Week, April 7–13, the St. Charles County Parks and Recreation Department recognized volunteers for their extraordinary service and dedication at its annual Volunteer Appreciation Night.
Approximately 130 park volunteers attended the celebration, which was held on Wednesday, April 10, at the Lodge at Quail Ridge Park in Wentzville.
“Our dedicated volunteers are a special group of citizens who make selfless contributions to the department,” said Parks Director Ryan Graham.
In 2018, hundreds of volunteers donated 10,543 hours to the St. Charles County regional parks system; a 4,000 hour increase over 2017.
“The estimated national value for each hour donated in 2018 was $24.69, which equates to $260,306 in labor donated to serving our community,” adds Graham. “We consider that priceless!”
At the appreciation celebration, 2018 Outstanding Volunteer Awards were given in several categories:
- Outstanding Individual Volunteers: Steve Story, Tim Wiegard, Alberta McGilligan, Jim Twellman, Mark Davis, and Craig Morton
- Outstanding Volunteer Group/Organizations: Missouri Master Naturalist, Confluence Chapter, and Canine Search and Rescue Association
- Outstanding Volunteer Parks Advocate: Barney Combs, Boone Home Certified Interpretive Guide
- Outstanding Volunteer Lifetime Achievement Award: Ruth Mellor, Parks Advisory Board and Parks Foundation Chair
“It is through the efforts of these volunteers that the St. Charles County Parks and Recreation Department can achieve our mission to bring nature, history, and recreational opportunities to all those who come to our parks,” Graham said.
In addition to volunteers, those in attendance included County Executive, Steve Ehlmann; Parks Advisory Board members Will Klein, Larry Henderson and Robert Wohler; and Parks Foundation members Tony Caruso and Bob Pecoraro.
Volunteers of all ages and abilities assist the St. Charles County Parks and Recreation Department with a variety of tasks throughout the year. These dedicated volunteers help to beautify and manage natural resources in the park; maintain and build the regional trails system; assist with educational programs and special events; and assist with demonstrations, re-enactments and interpretations at our Boone Home, Towne Park homestead and the County Heritage Museum; and so much more!
To become a volunteer for the St. Charles County Parks and Recreation Department, please call 636-949- 7535, or visit stccparks.org for more information about these opportunities.
National Volunteer Week, established in 1974, is focused on inspiring, recognizing and encouraging people to seek out imaginative ways to engage in their communities. The St. Charles County Parks and Recreation Department is honored to recognize park volunteers during this special time of year.