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5 Reasons to Become an Avant Gardening Volunteer

Looking for a new volunteer opportunity? We may just have the perfect one for you. As springtime returns and the 120 acres of Crystal Bridges begin to bloom and animals come out of hibernation, the museum comes to life in a whole new way. It’s a lot of ground to cover (pun intended), and to help maintain our natural areas, the museum offers a unique volunteer opportunity to become an Avant Gardener.

Avant Gardener volunteers partner with Trails and Grounds staff in the care and beautification of the native plant gardens throughout the Crystal Bridges grounds and over at the Momentary. Volunteers have flexible scheduling, ample orientation, and opportunities to meet new people or focus on their work surrounded by art and nature.

Here are 5 reasons to become an Avant Gardener:


1. Avant Gardeners work side by side with the Trails and Grounds team at Crystal Bridges and the Momentary and with other individuals who love nature and gardening. As Avant Gardener Patrice Murphy says, she enjoys “meeting new people, learning about native plants. It has changed how I garden and it has allowed me to get back to my roots! No pun intended.”

2. Avant Gardeners have a green thumb! They mulch, plant, weed, and maintain the beauty of the natural Ozark forest the museum sits on.

Deer on the trails at Crystal Bridges
Photo by Ironside Photography / Stephen Ironside.

3. They keep an eye open for local wildlife, including different species of birds, deer, rabbits, reptiles, insects, and more.

Bridge over stream with rocky shore

4. They are solely responsible for the care of several gardens on Crystal Bridges grounds, including the Monarch Waystation on the South Lawn, and the swale at the Momentary.

5. Sometimes, they even get to garden in unexpected places, like our green roof!

Shifts for Avant Gardeners are available weekday mornings March through October.

Ready to take the next step? Fill out a volunteer application here to get started.