Greetings to our Museum’s virtual visitors! As volunteer coordinator, my responsibilities include making sure our volunteers have the information they need. That involves everything from scheduling to providing the training they need.
Scheduling is my primary focus. Besides Fort Whipple Museum, there are four Gurley Street campus buildings that require scheduling of docents: Governor’s Mansion, Fremont House, Sharlot Hall Building and Lawler Exhibit Center.
Since the Museum is normally open seven days each week, there are two shifts each day except Sunday. You can imagine how interesting it can get when it comes to filling the schedule. Sometimes it’s like “whack-a-mole” (you hit one hole, another pops open!) – always challenging, but made easier with the dedication and talent of our volunteers. They’re the greatest!
The volunteer training program is an intense, 18-week course that covers just about every aspect of the Museum, from exhibits to buildings, grounds and facilities to collections. I assist with organizing and conducting the classes along with Jenny Pederson, education program manager.
Continuing education is ongoing. Building docents learn by shadowing experienced volunteers until they are comfortable and ready to go on their own. Tour guides, archives, collections, living history, store and grounds volunteers have similar processes. I also coordinate extracurricular opportunities (such as field trips, book club, potlucks) and volunteer staffing of such Museum festivals and events as Prescott Indian Art Market, Frontier Christmas, and more.
If you are interested in volunteering at Sharlot Hall Museum (or Fort Whipple museums when we’ve re-opened after this pandemic), please contact me at your convenience via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 928-277-2006 (direct number). Or stop by the Museum – I’m usually here Tuesdays through Saturdays from 9:00 am until 4:00 pm. We look forward to meeting you!