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Living History Volunteers Kick Off Training Season

Valley Forge National Historical Park

National Park News

Volunteers-in-Parks at Valley Forge recently completed their first training sessions of 2012 for living history interpretation. 

The workshops included “Meet Pete” for the Peter Muhlenberg Brigade, “Washington Slept Here” for Washington’s Headquarters, and “A Landlord and a Boarder” for Varnum’s Quarters.

Thirty-three veteran and newer volunteers came together with a renewed commitment to actively support the park’s living history program and one another by sharing historical knowledge, personal experiences, and best practices.

“We encouraged all Interpretation VIPs to participate in at least one training session that supports their area of concentration, whether it is working at the park’s visitor center or interpreting at the historical sites,” said Rhonda Schier, chief of interpretation and education.  “Our goal is to continually communicate, work together for steady progress, and move forward towards excellence in everything we do from historical dress to historical interpretation, from smooth operations to positive team relationships,“

New this year, three veteran VIPs now serve as VIP liaisons. These volunteers will assist the division of interpretation and education with communications and operations at the park’s historic sites. The liaisons will serve as leaders on the front line while continuing their living history duties and assisting NPS staff and partners with training sessions.

Future training sessions include “Pulse of the Park” on customer service and the visitor center desk, “Walk the Walk and Talk the Talk” on the art of informal interpretation, “Dress for Success in the 18th Century” for living history volunteers, and a behind-the-scenes vault tour of  artifacts, historical documents and photos.  VIPs will also have the opportunity to learn about the park’s natural resources and environmental preservation issues later this spring.

Volunteers will have the option to be certified at one of three levels depending on the number of training sessions completed.  VIPs may choose to be site specific certified, parkwide certified or advanced parkwide certified.

To learn more about Valley Forge NHP’s Volunteer-in-Parks program, click on the link below.


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