Volunteer Opportunity Highlight: U-Pick Raspberry Guru
We need folks to volunteer during our very popular raspberry season. Learn more about becoming a “U-Pick Guru” below.
Wright-Locke Farm is a vibrant community farm surrounded by beautiful fields, forests, and trails. As a nonprofit organization, volunteering is critical to our successful operation, supporting our mission to build broad community through active learning.
Come join us – as an individual, with your family, or with a group – to dig your fingers into the dirt, collect eggs (still warm) from the chickens, or make connections with others while weeding in the fields.
We have many different volunteer opportunities for individuals and groups and are always open to working with students and scouts for on-farm projects. Please explore our volunteer opportunities below and note that most opportunities are for 14 years+ (some exceptions).
**Before coming to the farm to volunteer for your first time, please fill out our Volunteer Form (for individuals).**
Questions? Email our Community Engagement Manager, Kim Kneeland.
Hundreds of individuals of all ages volunteer at Wright-Locke Farm each year. There are many ways to get involved. Here is how to start!
- Check out the opportunities below to see what you might be interested in doing. (Note that these opportunities are divided into three levels that indicate how much training and time each requires. Each opportunity also lists age and physical requirements.)
- Fill out our Volunteer Form with your information and volunteer interests.
- We’ll contact you to schedule your volunteer practice day. The practice day is a great “no-obligation” way for you and for Wright-Locke Farm to see if volunteering at the farm is a good fit.
We welcome groups of all kinds to come and volunteer with us. We are a small farm with a lot going on, so the types of tasks available and staff capacity vary from day to day. We try to set aside a few Wednesday mornings each month for larger groups volunteer sessions but, depending on the farm work needed, there may be exceptions to these allotted time slots. Please fill out the group request form to let us know more about your group’s needs and schedule.
As it takes a lot of time for our small staff to accommodate large groups on the farm, donations to help us defray expenses are most welcome, though not mandatory. We try to make sure that anyone with an interest can visit and learn at Wright-Locke Farm.
Individual students and classes from middle school to graduate school conduct farm-based projects, complete required internships, and undertake scout projects at the farm. If you are interested in doing a project with Wright-Locke Farm, please fill out this form so we can better understand how we can best work together.
Who Volunteers at Wright-Locke Farm?
People of all ages—from middle schoolers to retired seniors—and from a variety of backgrounds volunteer at Wright-Locke Farm. Our volunteers include people who enjoy nature, care about the environment, want to participate their own local food system, and like giving back to their community. They Include:
* Individuals, families, and corporate or community groups
* Students, parents, professionals, and retirees
* Weekly, occasional, and seasonal volunteers
I work M-F 9-5. Are there any times when I can volunteer to help out at the Farm?
Yes! There are. Check out the following opportunities: Chicken Chores, Event Volunteers, U-Pick Guru, Farm Stand Volunteers, Speaker Series Volunteers, Farm Clean-Up Days, and Raspberry Jam Maker. We also have some Field Crew opportunities on Saturdays.
What animals might I come into contact with at the Farm?
We have bees, goats, chickens, a couple of farm dogs (unleashed), and a barn cat at Wright-Locke Farm, as well as many dogs who come to take walks with their owners (leashed). The chickens often roam around free and you’ll find honey bees here and there in our fields, pollinating our crops. The goats are typically penned in, but occasionally are taken out for supervised walks and to forage. If you have any allergies or issues with animals, please be prepared with the knowledge that you very well might come in contact with any of these animals during your visit.
As a volunteer, can I take veggies home with me at the end of the day?
We do have a “take box” at the farm that contains “seconds” produce that volunteers and staff are welcome to bring home. We do not currently have a work-for-veggies program set up for our volunteers, but it is something that we’re thinking about. But if you are ever unsure about bringing home produce or flowers, please just ask our farmers!
Level 1 Opportunities
(easy to jump in and more flexible scheduling)
(April – October): Seasonal tasks include planting seeds in the greenhouse or field; transplanting, weeding, and harvesting crops that are sold in our farm stand, at markets, and through our flower CSA; and more. One-time and recurring opportunities are available. Volunteers must be prepared for physically demanding work involving moderate bending, pulling, and lifting in potentially adverse weather conditions. Tuesday – Saturdays only. Ages 14+ (with some exceptions; please contact us)
(March – October): Tasks include helping seed, plant, water, weed, maintain fields, and harvest flowers. Volunteers should be prepared for physically demanding work involving moderate bending, pulling, and lifting in potentially adverse weather conditions. Monday – Friday. Volunteers must be 16+
(May – October): Volunteers help Wright-Locke Farm with all aspects of the Farm’s engaging special events, including the popular summer Family Farm Nights. Tasks might include managing a welcome table, booth, or animal pen; helping direct farm guests; serving food; or setting up and breaking down event equipment. Most events occur during the weeknights and weekends. Ages 12+ for individuals and 10+ with parent.
(August – October): If individual, meditative raspberry picking is more your speed, come volunteer in the raspberry fields! Because raspberries come in fast and furious and we don’t want to waste any of their tasty goodness, our farmer needs a picking squad. If you enjoy picking raspberries, want to help us pick for markets and for our famous raspberry jam (and maybe get some berries to take home as a thank you), then this is the opportunity for you. You’ll receive a short training session with our farmer, then will be placed on her e-mail list so she can reach out when the fields are full and need picking. Picking sessions will be concentrated on Tuesdays-Saturdays during the mornings and early afternoons with some exceptions. Volunteers should be 12+ (younger children may volunteer with parents)
(April – October): At the beginning and end of the farming season, we host an all-farm clean-up day. Tasks are varied, but they often involve getting dirty, and all include having fun! Come as an individual or as a family for these days. Generally held midday on Saturdays. We announce dates in our weekly e-newsletter and through e-mails to our volunteer list.
Level 2 Opportunities
(require a training session or two and are a little more involved)
(August-October): Join us at the farm patio during our open picking hours to welcome and instruct pickers. Help set up and breakdown our raspberry packing station and facilitate the flow as people enter and exit the fields. This is a great way to learn about the farm and spend time in the gorgeous late-summer and fall weather while getting to meet other community members.
Logistics: Volunteer hours will consist of 2-3 hour sessions concentrated on Wednesdays, Thursdays, or Saturdays depending on weather (morning and afternoon sessions available). Volunteers should be 14+ (some exceptions for parents who volunteer with a child).
To sign-up, please fill out this emergency contact form, then sign-up for a guru training session:
For questions contact Kim Kneeland at email@example.com.
(Year-round): Help our “chicken chore” volunteer group perform daily tasks for our flock: bring food and water; collect, clean, and tally eggs; and more. This is a great way for young people and families to get involved as these chores can be done at your own pace with flexible timing and morning, evening, and weekend slots available. Volunteers must complete a 30-40-minute training session before signing up for chores. While there is no official time commitment for this role, most volunteers have found that chicken chores work best on a consistent schedule so you can master the routine and help us be the eyes and ears of our flock. For example, you could sign up for chores once a week or once every two weeks, or if you have a week off, you could even come every day!
(May – October): Help us advertise and set up for each of the farm’s speaker series sessions. Before each monthly presentation, we need help to get the word out with posters, e-mails, and social media. On the evening of the presentation, we also need help to set up the barn, welcome guests, and track attendance. You can help with some or all of these tasks. Time commitment: 4-8 hours per month, but you may sign up for one month at a time.
(Late December – February): Help perform morning feed chores for our goats and cat while the farmer is on winter break. The sign-up is day-to-day (very flexible) and requires just morning chores that include bringing food and water to the animals. You will need to complete a 30-minute training session before volunteering. Goat chores may be done by families or individuals. Volunteers should be able to lift and carry 30 lbs and walk on uneven surfaces.
(April – October): Student volunteers help oversee young children and assist farm staff during our seasonal youth programs; volunteers are scheduled to help with a specific week-long program. These positions are limited and require filling out a special application (coming soon). Ages 15+ Please E-mail our Education Director, Erika, for more information.
Level 3 Opportunities
(require multiple training sessions and consistent time commitment)
(May – November): If you’re outgoing and would like some great café/retail experience, we need highly dedicated volunteers to help run our Farm Stand. We are looking for reliable volunteers who can commit to a two-to-five-hour shift once a week. We will train you so that you are knowledgeable in all things Farm Stand. This is a tough but rewarding volunteer opportunity where you’ll get to interact with farm visitors while getting a close look at running a small business. Volunteers should be able to lift 30 lbs and be comfortable standing on their feet for extended periods of time. Ages 16+
(August – October): It’s tradition at Wright-Locke Farm to open up our raspberry fields to the public each fall for U-pick Raspberries. This is a whirlwind season and we need individuals (or small teams) to help from August – early October to help set up the berry operations and recruit, train, and schedule volunteer “U-Pick Gurus” for days the fields are open. You will work closely with our Community Engagement Manager. Time commitments range from 3-6 hours a week, depending on how many volunteer. Coordinators should be 18+ and be ready to commit for the fall season.
(Some opportunities in July but concentrated in September and October): During raspberry season, we aim to make the most of this delicate, delicious, and nutritious crop by making our excess berries into jam. Help us carry on the tradition and make our famous jam by learning from our pros who have been doing it for years as they pass on the torch. Jam Makers should preferably have kitchen, jamming, and canning experience.
(Year-round as projects emerge): Farms always need handy folks around. If you are someone who likes to build things, problem solve, or is mechanically inclined, let us know! Past projects have included building mobile chicken coops, building a compost sifter, fixing our old (and new) tractors, painting, carpentry, etc.