Volunteer Opportunities

The volunteer program at Old Sturbridge Village plays a vital role in fulfilling the museum's mission to re-create and preserve the past for visitors. Over 100 Village volunteers collectively contribute thousands of service hours annually. Our volunteers fill many roles, from costumed greeters to office assistants and herb garden assistants and many more. Volunteers must be at least 18 years old.

To volunteer or learn more, call 508-347-0302, email us, or download a Volunteer Application Form

Volunteer Benefits

  • Free admission to the Museum
  • Educational opportunities
  • Access to the Research Library
  • Guest Passes for every 50 hours of volunteer service
  • Museum discounts (after 50 hours of volunteer service)

Current volunteer opportunities

Herb Garden Volunteer

Old Sturbridge Village Dancers

Old Sturbridge Village Singers

Old Sturbridge Village Volunteer Docent

Visitor Center Greeter

Seed-Packaging Volunteer

Herb Garden Volunteer

Department:
Museum Program

Responsibilities:
Help weed and maintain the Old Sturbridge Village Herb Garden.  Volunteer will be trained by the Herb Garden lead.

Requirements:
There is a lot of bending and getting up and down.  Some days the volunteer may be asked to work independently, without the herb garden lead. There will be a garden training arranged by the Volunteer Coordinator . The volunteer must have good customer service skills and be comfortable talking with visitors.

Hours:
Work in the Herb Garden starts in April and ends in late October. Volunteers must be able to commit to coming one day a week.

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Old Sturbridge Village Dancers

Department:
Museum Program

Responsibilities:
The OSV Dancers portray 'experienced dancers' from the town of Sturbridge. Young people from the Village would attend dance schools taught by itinerant dance teachers who would move from town to town in the early 1800s.

All of the dances performed are authentic for the period. Performances typically include demonstration dances and guest participation.

Requirements:
The Old Sturbridge Village Dancers practice weekly from May until November and dance at least once a month during that period. The Dancers also perform at many of our special events including Evening of Illumination and Christmas by Candlelight.

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Old Sturbridge Village Singers

Department:
Museum Program

Responsibilities:
The Old Sturbridge Village Singers sing one Saturday a month from May through October and also at our Christmas by Candlelight program on select evenings in December.

The OSV Singers portray a 'singing school' from the town of Sturbridge.  The purpose of the singing school was to improve the singing in the churches.

All of the music performed is authentic for the period.  The repertoire consists of shape-note hymns, anthems, secular choruses, folk and patriotic songs as well as rounds and catches.

Requirements:
Prospective singers audition in April.  The Old Sturbridge Village Singers rehearse on Mondays in May.

It is recommended that those interested be able to learn music on your own and have had choral/choir experience.

Must be willing to be costumed.

Hours:
On the days that the singers perform there is an open rehearsal from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Meetinghouse. There are two performances in the afternoon each lasting 30 minutes.

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Old Sturbridge Village Volunteer Docent

Department:
Museum Program

Responsibilities:
Docents will be trained for a household, craft space, or exhibit.  They will be mentored and work with a staff person.  Depending on the exhibit space they may be costumed.  They will interpret to the public and demonstrate skills used in their space.

Requirements:
Must be able to volunteer one or more days a week.  Must be available for historical as well as exhibit and skill training.  Must be able to take direction from staff.  Must have good customer service skills.  The docent will be asked to do 50 hours or more of general volunteering before specialized training starts.

Hours:
9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. one or more days a week.

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Visitor Center Greeter

Department:
Museum Program

Responsibilities:
The Visitor Center Greeter welcomes visitors as they enter the Visitor Center, answers their questions about the Village, and helps facilitate the ticketing process by directing visitors to appropriate lines for admittance into the village. The greeter will also assist ticketing staff with selling memberships.

Requirements:
The Visitor Center Greeter must be outgoing, enjoy talking to people, and able to take direction from Visitor Center Management. Must have good customer service skills.

Hours:
Must be able to commit to one day a month, from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. with a break for lunch. Historical and greeter training will be provided.

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Seed-Packaging Volunteer

Department:
Museum Program

Responsibilities:
Seed packagers meet during the winter on a weekday to package seeds from our Heirloom plants for sale in the OSV Gift Shops.  Volunteers measure seeds, fill envelopes and seal them.

Requirements:
Some seeds are very small so fine motor skills are necessary.  Attention to detail and careful counting of packets are requirements.  Some of the work may be done in an upstairs location, so being able to climb stairs will be necessary.

Hours:
Seeds are packaged during the winter months. The OSV Lead Gardener will establish a schedule close to packaging time.

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