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Working to protect the Mississippi River and its watershed in the Twin Cities area
As members of the Riverfront Support Crew, volunteers provide hundreds of paddlers with support, assistance, food and beverages, and a healthy dose of encouragement and good cheer.
The Challenge is a half-, one- or two-day paddle through the metro area that raises awareness of the importance of the Mississippi River. Along the route, there are over a dozen stops at which paddlers rest, refuel and learn about special places along the river. Individuals and volunteer groups are needed at each of these riverfront route stops, spanning from Bloomington Ferry in West Blooming/Shakopee to Grey Cloud Island roughly 20 miles south of St. Paul. With the support and direction of FMR staff, crew volunteers help with general event/site assistance — from assisting with boats and greeting participants and visitors to helping with refreshments or directing traffic. Qualified volunteers are also sought to for first-aid assistance.
Three and four-hour event-assistance shifts are available Friday evening through Sunday late afternoon. Volunteers can sign up for as many shifts as they like. Those completing two full shifts gain free entry to the Night at the Fort.
Volunteers receive a Mississippi River Challenge t-shirt and meals or snacks at their volunteer site(s), not to mention the gratitude of paddlers and staff.
A list of the shifts and locations as well as a Riverfront Support Crew registration form is available at the Mississippi River Challenge web site. Volunteer registration for families and individuals begins in mid-April. Large group reservations are taken ahead of time, typically between mid-February and mid-March. If you have a large group, please contact FMR Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator sue rich at 651-222-2193 x14.