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Volunteers Needed At HMSC Visitors Center

Updated: Jun 17

The Hatfield Marine Science Center’s Visitor Center is back open again, however they

will be scaling back summer hours this year due to a shortage of staff and volunteers. The visitor center still has much to offer and even has a new octopus. The resident Giant Pacific Octopus is back in the main tank of the Visitor Center. She’s a curious and inquisitive gal.

A new pilot project being rolled out this summer is Science a la Carte. Informal, hands-on presentations are made from a cart rolled out for visitors and then put away when it is not in use. The first topic for Science a la Carte is sea otters. The volunteer docents discuss otters and kelp forest health, the current state of otters in Oregon, and compare sea and river otter characteristics.

Visitor Center volunteers Engage with visitors from around the world as they explore exhibits about the natural wonders of the Oregon coast and cutting-edge marine research. volunteers help with a wide array of duties including:

  • Engage and educate the public in the Visitor Center

  • Lead summer estuary tours

  • Discuss sea lions and the local fishing fleet at Newport’s Historic Bayfront

  • Assist with animal care

  • Work with visiting field-trip groups

  • Behind-the-scenes projects such as creating new public programming

  • Help with exhibit development

The Visitor Center will be open from Thursday to Monday, 10 am to 4 pm, and closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Reservations are required. Please visit the website to make a reservation or learn about the exhibits. Anyone interested in volunteering at the Visitor Center is encouraged to contact volunteer coordinator Renee Fowler at renee.fowler@oregonstate.edu.

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