Thank you for your interest!  We are grateful for your generosity.

As a Grotto volunteer you are part of a legacy to the Portland community and to our visitors from the global community. We hope that volunteer service here will bring you personal fulfillment.

Festival of Lights Volunteers

The Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights would not be possible without the help and support of hundreds of volunteers. Most positions are outdoors where volunteers can enjoy the decorations, hear the music and interact with the guests, but some indoor positions are available. Festival volunteer opportunities are wonderful for individuals, families, church communities, school groups, club members, and business groups.  Come volunteer with a friend or bring the whole family.  Most shifts are from 4:30-7:30 p.m., or from 7:15-10 p.m.  Many volunteers enjoy this event so much they sign up for multiple nights.

For more information on volunteering at the Festival of Lights, please contact

To register to volunteer at Festival please use this link.

Year-round volunteer opportunities include:

Hospitality Volunteers

Hospitality volunteers greet and assist visitors which include distributing maps, giving directions, providing assistance with the Upper Grounds entrance and elevator and serving as a reporting mechanism for emergencies, hazards and maintenance issues. Training will be provided to become familiar with the history of The Grotto and the gardens.

Commitment: Varies based on hours of operation from Monday through Sunday.

Horticulture & Grounds Volunteers

Horticulture & Grounds Volunteers duties include weeding, pruning, clean up, watering, mulching, invasive species control, planting and special projects all under the direction of The Grotto Grounds Management Staff.

Commitment: Varies based on need and hours of operation.

Event and Conference Center Volunteers

Event Volunteers assist The Grotto staff to help stage special events and other activities such as Crabfest, Blessing of The Animals, The Grotto Concert Series, Friends of The Grotto Appreciation Events and more.

Commitment: Varies based on need and seasonal scheduling, typically evenings and weekends.

Tour Guides

Tour guides lead 90-minute walking tours of the lower level and upper level grounds for children and/or adults originating from The Grotto Visitor Center. Tour guides receive in-depth training on The Grotto history, current events and various points of interest. In addition, walking tours are scheduled each week on Saturday and Sunday at 11:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. during summer months.

 Administrative Volunteers

Administrative Volunteers assist staff with general office such as answering phones, filing, data entry, mailing, copying, special projects, etc. Special projects include assisting staff with the volunteer schedule for the annual Festival of Lights.

Commitment: Varies.

Volunteer Benefits

Volunteering is rewarding in itself, but you do get some special bonuses. Active, year-round volunteers get a variety of benefits, including:

  • Admission to the Upper Gardens (Duo or Family Garden Pass upon completion of 45 hours of service)
  • Discounts at The Grotto Gift Shop
  • Ongoing training and support for an exciting and rewarding experience

How to Apply

For more information about volunteering at The Grotto, please fill out the appropriate volunteer form below, or call 503-254-7371 or email

We are always accepting applications for new volunteers! Please note that all The Grotto volunteers must pass a criminal background check prior to beginning their service.

General Volunteering: Click here to fill out our general volunteer form.

Christmas Festival of Lights Volunteering: Click here