One of the holy grails of full-time RVing is being able to successfully clinch a workamping or campground host position at a park. But that can be a challenge if you don’t have any formal experience in either.
Case in point, we really want to give workamping/camp hosting a try. And we were intimidated by the thought that many others vie for such opportunities.
Others with experience.
However, you’ll never get the chance if you don’t get out there and apply.
In January Mama ‘Skiy decided to complete an online application with Florida State Parks for volunteer resident and campground host gigs.
It was a long shot, but she hit the mark.
On Monday — just a couple of weeks later — she received a phone call from a park ranger at St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park in Fellsmere, FL, only thirty minutes south of our sticks and bricks. The ranger said she saw her application and asked if she’d be available for a camp hosting position over the summer.
Too good to be true?!
Well, Mama said yes, so they made arrangements to meet the upcoming weekend.
Fast-forward to Saturday. Today. We all drove down to the park to meet with the ranger at 10am to learn more about the job and find out if we are a fit.
It’s safe to say that Mama’s jaws are still sore, she’s been grinning so much ever since!
We were taken on a guided tour of the 23,000+ acres of the preserve, to see where the full hookup resident circle is located, learn where the trail heads are and where they run, get an idea of the land, see the equipment that would be at her disposal, and so on.
And it was perfect!
After touring for more than an hour, we enthusiastically accepted the offer. We’ll begin sometime in April and will live there until possibly August or September.
Mama’s duties will include assisting with tagging and tracking various bird species, cleaning and clearing trails, opening and closing the park gates, helping out in the visitors center, and more.
Her commitment is only 20 hours of service per week, in exchange for us staying on-site at their private and gated full hookup resident camping circle.
This is not only yet another dream-come-true for Mama, who wished she could be a park ranger when she was a child. This is also an incredible volunteer and educational experience for D ‘Skiy and M ‘Skiy, who will be permitted to assist Mama when she works.
On top of that, one of the trails we drove on leads to a county swimming pool, and the huge C-54 canal that separates the north section of the preserve from the south can be fished and is inhabited by manatees.
It’s difficult to say who is most excited about this opportunity: Mama, Papa, the boys, or the ranger we met with today.
We took a chance. We have loads of RVing, traveling, and maintenance experience, but zilch as workampers or camp hosts.
This ranger was happy with what she read in the application, and she was even more enthused when we showed up to our — for lack of a better word — interview and we finally met face to face.
Honestly, this was a long shot. It’s no secret that most workampers and camp hosts are retired. We don’t fit the stereotype, but we certain fit the bill.
Everything is falling in to place for us, and we’re so grateful and blessed.
And now, no matter when the house sells, we already know where we’ll be for the summer.