Nov 30, 2022 - Things to Do

Here's your chance to live at an Iowa state park for free

Illustration of a state park sign in the shape of Iowa.

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

If you've ever wanted to live in nature, a volunteer opportunity from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources may be your shot.

Driving the news: The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is searching for volunteers who are willing to live at its parks for up to five months in exchange for a free campsite.

  • The program has been going on for several years.

Zoom in: Volunteer campground hosts who can assist with daily operations — like talking with visitors — are needed from May to October.

  • A wide mix of people apply to be park hosts, including retirees, people who have free summers and out-of-state visitors, said Zachary Faust of the Iowa DNR.
  • Volunteers are expected to live in their own campers. Some of the parks that need people include Clear Lake, Walnut Woods, George Wyth, Pikes Peak and Lake Wapello.

How to apply: Visit the Iowa DNR site here.

Of note: State officials evicted Iowa DNR rangers from 23 state parks earlier this year because of needed repairs at their state-owned houses.

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