Get involved at the Village!


A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village offers many unique volunteer opportunities. Our volunteer program is designed for individuals interested in taking on a leadership role at the Village. All volunteer positions offer hands-on opportunities to individuals interested in directly affecting the experiences of children and families who visit the Village.


Discovery Village volunteers are a diverse group of individuals from the Salem area who support our mission to “inspire children to learn and grow through play”. Volunteers gain valuable experience by leading demonstrations and activities, supervising campers during our camp season and helping to maintain the facility and grounds. Our volunteer program provides many rewards such as first-time work experience, the opportunity to gain job skills and opportunities to make a meaningful contribution to our community.


Become a volunteer today!

Click here to download the Youth Volunteer Application.

Click here to download the Adult Volunteer Application.


Who is a Village Volunteer?

  • An individual who is interested in developing their leadership skills and enjoys working with and around children as they learn and grow through play.
  • Willing to develop and enhance their knowledge of the exhibits and educational offerings of A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village and how they apply to learning.
  • Interested in learning and sharing how things work via experiments, demonstrations and other unique learning experiences.
  • Embraces and celebrates diversity and encourages others to learn and discover more about the world around them.
  • Enthusiastic about developing their own professional and academic skills.
  • Is at least 14 years old.


Currently Recruiting:

Summer Camp Intern

Summer Camp Interns are individuals interested in developing their leadership skills while working with and around Village campers. Interns are a diverse group of volunteers from the Salem area who assist Village teachers in educating and supervising Village campers while they learn and grow through play. These volunteers are interested in growing their own skills while helping others learn. Must be at least 17 years old and willing to commit to one summer camp session July-August (Approximately 40 hours/week).

Click here to download the Summer Camp Internship Application.

Applications due: June 16, 2014

Training: June 19, 2014


Summer Camp Assistant

Summer Camp Assistants will enhance the Village camper’s experience by assisting the Village Teachers and Summer Camp Interns. Responsibilities include but are not limited to: assisting Summer Camp Counselor Interns with supervising campers during before and after care times (8:00-9:00am and 4:00-5:00 pm), lunch time (12:00-1:00) and break times. They will also facilitate activities and help with set-up/take-down of classroom activities. Camp Assistants will gain experience in the following areas: child supervision, group management, curriculum/activity facilitation, customer service and public speaking skills. Summer Camp Assistants need to commit to a minimum of one week of volunteer service.

Click here to download the Summer Camp Assistant Application.

Applications due: June 16, 2014

Training: June 19, 2014


Village Explainer

Explainers are youth typically ages 15 to 20 who present information, activities, and learning opportunities in museum settings. A mainstay in science centers and museums for well over two decades, Explainers work directly with audiences, engaging the public through inquiry-based exploration activities. They add a new dimension of social interactivity to exhibit spaces while gaining knowledge, skills and confidence that enhance their prospects for continued academic and workforce success.

Village Explainers are responsible for facilitating activities at the museum on Saturdays during Discovery Saturdays from 1:00-3:00.


Summer 2014 Volunteer Opportunities

One-time Events:

Below is a list of one-time events scheduled to occur during the Summer of 2014. If you are interested in volunteering at a one-time event please contact Jessi Stevens at or 503-371-3631 to be assigned to a volunteer shift and responsibility.


A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village Garden Tour 5/30/14 – 5/31/14

Join us for A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village’s 19th annual Garden Tour on May 31st – June 1st, 2014. For the past 18 years the proceeds from the Garden Tour have helped to support the operation of the Village. Without our community’s participation we would not be able to serve the 70,000 children and families who visit the Village each year. Community involvement is crucial to the success of the museum. Discovery Village has been a vital part of the community, as well as a destination point, for visitors since 1989.

Volunteer Responsibilities: Greet ticketed visitors, answer questions to the best of your knowledge, help to maintain the safety of garden property.

Volunteer Shifts: Friday May 31: 9:45-1:00 or 12:45-4:00; Saturday June1: 9:45-1:00 or 12:45-4:00.

Volunteer benefits: 1 free ticket to the Garden Tour, drawing entry for free passes to the Oregon Garden and $35.00 gift certificate to Schreiner’s Iris Gardens.


Community Day sponsored by PGE 6/21/14

PGE Community Day at A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village is an opportunity for families from all backgrounds to explore science through hands-on learning. As visitors enter Discovery Village, they will be provided with a guide for exploring the Village through the lens of science and inquiry. In addition to science-focused permanent exhibits, five new learning stations will use hands-on materials to explore electricity and the future of energy. As visitors leave the Village, they will be provided with educational materials from PGE that encourage at-home educational extensions. Admission to the museum is free. Event hours 10:00-5:00.

Volunteer Responsibilities: Facilitate activities, help with maintaining exhibits, and help with crowd control.

Volunteer Shifts: 9:30-12:30, 12:00-3:30, 3:00-5:30

Volunteer Benefits: 2 guest passes to A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village, hours applicable to required community service hours for school credit.


World Beat Festival 6/28/14

A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village partners with Salem Multicultural Institute and provides volunteers to greet and take donations from guests at the entry gates during the World Beat Festival at Salem’s Riverfront Park in June.

Volunteer Responsibilities: Attend a brief training before volunteer shift, gate greeters ensure that every Festival guest is greeted with a smile and an invitation to make a donation without feeling overwhelmed.

Volunteer Shifts: 8:45-1:45, 1:15-6:00, 5:30-10:00

Volunteer Benefits: Free World Beat Festival t-shirt


Riverfront Family Fest 8/2/14

Represent A.C. Gilbert’s Discover Village at this year’s Riverfront Family Fest sponsored by Family Building Blocks. This festival a great way for families to come together and learn about the amazing healthy choices our community has to offer.

Volunteer Responsibilities: Set-up and maintain the ACGDV community outreach booth. Facilitate a fun activity that engages children and families and promotes our mission to “inspire children to learn through creative play”.

Volunteer Shift: 9:30-2:30

Volunteer Benefits: 2 guest passes to A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village, hours applicable to required community service hours for school credit.


Salem Maker Celebration 8/9/14

Salem Maker Celebration will be an opportunity for visitors to explore the science of making in all of its forms. A.C. Gilbert believed that by inviting children to become makers of machines, objects, and other wonders, children would become better problem solvers and critical thinkers. As modern successors to the Gilbert legacy, Maker Fairs have emerged around the country as a way for maker of all ages to build their own future. A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village will celebrate the science of making through a community festival that inspires creativity through play.

Volunteer Responsibilities: Facilitate activities, help with maintaining exhibits, help with crowd control.

Volunteer Shifts: Friday, Saturday, Sunday

Volunteer Benefits: 2 free passes to Maker event, hours applicable to required community service hours required for school credit.


Become a resident volunteer at the Village!


Education Programs Volunteer

Assist Village Educators with the facilitation of small activities and events held at the museum. A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village Family Programs occur 2-3 times a month year-round. They include but are not limited to Preschool First Thursday, Schools out Science Is In, Fall/Winter/Spring Break Classes, Scout Badge Days, Homeschool Hangout and other classes and workshops developed quarterly.


Visitor Experience Volunteer

Visitor Experience Volunteers assist the Visitor Experience Associate with daily responsibilities at the Village. Responsibilities include but are not limited to: greeting and interacting with museum visitors, monitoring exhibits, cleaning and re-setting exhibits, preparing materials for enhanced exhibit use and assisting in museum rentals such as birthday parties.


Family Learning Facilitator

Family Learning Facilitators are experts on all exhibits at the Village. They can identify learning outcomes of exhibits and facilitate activities to enrich the visitors experience within the exhibit. Volunteers are given the opportunity to learn and develop curriculum for activities facilitated within exhibits.


Facilities Maintenance Assistant

Will assist both the Facilities Director and the Facilities Assistant with routine maintenance on all museum exhibits, grounds and facilities. The Facilities Maintenance Assistant will assist in tasks for the museum’s daily operation. Necessary tasks include but are not limited to: exhibit preparation and maintenance, outdoor yard work, cobweb removal and general cleaning.


Court Appointed Community Service (CACS)

A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village is committed to support youth who have committed minor legal offenses. Applicants must be under the age of 18 and pass an initial screening process. Volunteers will be given a schedule that meets the needs of the museum and its staff. The Court Appointed Community Service volunteer program allows all new applicants to complete one (1) term of community service at A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village. Volunteers who have already completed one term of service at the Village are not eligible to complete another term of Court Appointed Community Service.

Initial screening process can take up to two weeks.

Click here to download the CACS Volunteer Application.


For more information, please contact:
Angeline Desquesnes, Volunteer Coordinator
A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village
116 Marion St. NE
Salem, Oregon 97301-3437

Phone: 503-371-3631