Volunteer Spotlight: Ed & Cindy Are (Camp) Hosts with the Most

Posted on 3/16/2022
by Kylie Jacott, Promotions & Outreach Coordinator and Dana Kruse, Volunteer & Facilities Coordinator
Join us as we shine a light on Pottawattamie Conservation volunteers to thank them for their time and talents and recognize the difference they make in our community. Our volunteers ROCK!

Below, take a moment to meet Pottawattamie Conservation volunteers and Botna Bend Park camp hosts, Ed and Cindy.

“Cindy and Ed do a great job always checking on facilities and keeping things neat and tidy. They sell a lot of firewood and always keep an eye out for someone needing help, info, or advice. Ed is pretty handy with things too and is able to fix things if they are not able to get ahold of Cory or myself right away.”

— Botna Bend Park Ranger Jon Fenner


How Long Ed & Cindy Have Volunteered With Us:

Ed and Cindy are kicking off their 4th year as Botna Bend’s camp “hosts with the most” this month (woohoo!). March might seem a little early to some, but the work they do is a huge help in getting the park ready for its peak season and all of the campers and visitors who choose Botna Bend as their nature escape.

As camp hosts, Ed & Cindy are willing to roll up their sleeves and help with whatever is needed, which can be quite the mix of things! This includes checking on campers and answering their questions, supplying firewood, helping manage kayaking trips down the nearby West Nishnabotna, caring for wildlife in the park including elk and bison, and doing general grounds and facility maintenance. They also love to help with park events including Botna Bend’s annual Pancake Feed and Halloween bash in the fall. Most recently they helped ensure our Maple Tree Tap event on March 5th ran smoothly by checking in participants and directing them through the park.

Ed checks in registrants for this year's Maple Tree Tap event at Botna Bend Park.

“We really love the park and being part of the conservation team and helping to keep Botna Bend a first-class experience and destination for the park visitors. Ultimately, we want each person that visits to have a special experience and help them be good stewards of the park.” 

— Ed & Cindy


What Ed & Cindy Have Learned While Volunteering:

Being in a leadership role isn’t something that’s naturally comfortable for everyone - Cindy included. That’s why she appreciates all the opportunities that being a camp host gives her to be a leader and help visitors and campers. Both her and Ed have also enjoyed discovering the “brotherhood” found in the RV and camping world and sharing that with park visitors.


Something Interesting About Ed & Cindy:

Not only are they awesome camp hosts who love bringing their grandchildren out to stay with them and fostering their love for the outdoors, but Ed’s also an experienced EMT who volunteered with Macedonia Fire and Rescue for 15 years. It gives us peace of mind to know that he has this special experience - along with Ranger Jon and Cory’s first aid and CPR certifications - just in case a visitor or camper has an accident.

Volunteers like Ed & Cindy make a huge difference for our small organization by keeping our parks beautiful, providing a great experience for visitors, and supporting local conservation efforts that protect wildlife, pollinators, and us humans, too! Their dedication, along with all of our other amazing volunteers, allows us to reach more people about the importance of natural spaces and be good stewards of the land. We truly couldn't do it without our passionate volunteers and can't thank Ed & Cindy enough for everything they do to support our work.

Thank you for everything, Ed & Cindy!



Explore Volunteer Opportunities & Apply Today

We are always looking for new faces to help us keep Pottawattamie Conservation parks beautiful and educate the public. Whether you prefer outdoors or indoors, our volunteer opportunities provide impactful ways for you to make a difference, connect with nature and support our community.

Regular volunteers have the option of setting their own schedule and are rewarded with educational opportunities and other benefits. Volunteers also receive an annual park permit and a discount on gift shop merchandise as a thank you for their efforts.

For more information on volunteer opportunities or to schedule a private volunteer project please contact Dana Kruse, Volunteer and Facilities Coordinator at (712) 545-3283 or email him at dana.kruse@pottcounty-ia.gov.

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