Summer is the perfect time to sign up for the Forest Preserve District of Will County’s natural resource management volunteer workdays.

Volunteering to help keep Will County’s forest preserves in tiptop shape is a great way to give back, get outside and get some exercise. Volunteers help maintain the preserves by chopping and chipping away the invasive species that can choke out the native plants. Volunteers also tackle brush control, garlic mustard and sweet clover removal, wood chipping and seed collection.

Workdays are held from 8 a.m. until noon, unless otherwise noted. An RSVP is required so that enough equipment and supplies are available, and a description of the work can be sent to participants. RSVP to Renee at [email protected] or 815.722.7634. Following the workday, volunteers can stay and learn about the flora and fauna of the preserves as a bonus.

Here is the summer schedule:

  • Tuesday, July 16: Monee Reservoir, Monee Township
  • Sunday, July 21: Goodenow Grove Nature Preserve, Crete Township
  • Tuesday, July 30: Evans-Judge Preserve, Wilmington
  • Saturday, Aug. 17: Goodenow Grove Nature Preserve, Crete Township, 1-5 p.m.
  • Sunday, Aug. 18: Hammel Woods – Route 59 Access, Shorewood
  • Tuesday, Aug. 20: Sugar Creek Preserve, Joliet, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Seed Collecting
  • Tuesday, Aug. 27: Kankakee Sands Preserve, Shenk Grove, Custer Township, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Seed Collecting
  • Tuesday, Sept. 10: Romeoville Prairie Nature Preserve, Romeoville (Park at Isle a la Cache Museum).
  • Saturday, Sept. 14: Hickory Creek Preserve – Hickory Creek Junction, Mokena.
  • Sunday, Sept. 15: Sharefest at Hickory Creek Preserve – LaPorte Road Access, Mokena
  • Tuesday, Sept. 24: Kropp Prairie, Naperville, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Seed Collecting
  • Saturday, Sept. 28: National Public Lands Day at Isle a la Cache Museum, Romeoville

Participants should dress for outdoor work (long pants, closed-toe shoes and work gloves) and for the weather. Work will take place on uneven terrain that is primarily natural surface. For more information on the Forest Preserve District’s volunteer opportunities, visit