Longtime Volunteer

two adult volunteers with a group of children doing an educational activity together

I started visiting Reiman Gardens shortly after it opened twenty-five years ago. It was always a place to relax and enjoy the plants and grounds. Sometime after the Butterfly Wing opened, I began to volunteer as a docent there. I got to know other volunteers and the names of some of my favorite butterflies. After I retired, I returned to the Butterfly Wing and gradually found other ways to contribute. Now I have a number of other volunteer jobs as well, working with the families of the Caterpillar Club, giving adult and family tours, working with the youth education programs, and photographing the several gardens and special events. I enjoy all these opportunities, but my favorite is giving tours.

When giving a tour, I get to talk with the visitors, point out things that I find fascinating and help the guests see things that are special to Reiman Gardens. By talking with them, it is easier to personalize their visit and point out things they may find of special interest. And I always try to leave them with a reason to make a return visit.

In this, Reiman Gardens twenty-fifth year, I look forward to the re-opening of the Gardens with the summer sculptures. These sculpture exhibits provide great tour discussions and photo opportunities.

Reiman Gardens is a treasure – a treasure for the university, a treasure for the city of Ames and the state of Iowa, and a treasure to me. Being a volunteer at Reiman Gardens allows me to enjoy this treasure in so many different ways, at so many different times, and with so many different people. Volunteering at Reiman Gardens offers many opportunities to get involved. Prospective volunteers can find a position that fits their interests, skill level, schedule, and available times.

“Welcome to Reiman Gardens.”

-Rick B.