Host program

Hosting is one of the most popular volunteer opportunities at Washington State Parks. Park hosts help State Parks achieve our mission to connect all Washingtonians to their diverse natural and cultural heritage and provide memorable recreational and educational experiences. 

Hosts assist park staff in campground and park operations and assist visitors by providing park information, answering questions, and explaining rules. Hosts are provided a designated RV site and utilities during their volunteer service. As a host, you will be joining a supportive community of volunteers and staff who serve the public and our public lands.


  • Hosts must be at least 18 years old and are required to pass a criminal background check.
  • Hosts must provide their own RV or camping unit; lodging cannot be provided. 
  • Host assignments typically require a 30-day commitment. This may be extended up to 90 days at the park manager’s discretion.
  • Hosts are required to perform a minimum of 28 hours of service a week and are expected to work 5 days a week with 2 days off.
  • Hosts should enjoy working with the public, have the desire to accept new challenges, and possess the willingness to learn about Washington state parks. 

Host Descriptions

As a host, you will represent Washington State Parks by greeting the public and helping set the tone for a pleasant stay. Hosts assist park staff and perform a variety of tasks depending on the park and the type of host assignment.

Camp host

Camp hosts assist at overnight and day-use parks. They greet campers, answer questions, and perform light maintenance particular to the park. This may include litter pick-up, raking campsites, or lawn mowing. Hosts may assist with other projects around the park based on the parks needs and the hosts’ skills and interests.

Retreat center host

Retreat centers are rustic lodges and cabins, which are used for school field trips, church group or business retreats, and family reunions. Retreat center hosts assist visitors with check in, logistics, and use of facilities. Retreat center hosts may also perform some light maintenance duties around the facility.

Interpretive host

Interpretive hosts assist at interpretive centers, museums and lighthouses. They often give interpretive center tours, host beach and nature walks, or present campfire programs.

Marine host

Marine hosts assist boaters as they enter the marine park area, inform them about park facilities and moorage, alert boaters of weather conditions, and let them know about unique areas to explore. Unlike other hosts, marine hosts are required to stay for a minimum of one to two weeks, depending on the location. Marine hosts must have their own boat.

how to apply

To apply to become a volunteer host, please download, complete and return the following two forms (applications will not be processed until both forms are received):

  1. Volunteer Application 
  2. P-009 Request for Criminal Disclosure & History (A separate P-009 form is required for each individual that will be staying at the host site, regardless if they will be performing host duties)

Completed forms can be submitted via e-mail or you may mail hard copies to: 

WA State Parks Volunteer Program
P.O. Box 42650
Olympia, WA 98504-2650

Please refer to the host application process (PDF) for more details.


Park host at Lake Easton State Park sweeps the parking lot
Camporee 2017
Camp Hosts Pete and Ellen Lauritzen and Tony Deien
Camp Host Jeannine King