Whether you’re intrigued by tide pools, sea stacks, and stunning rocky shoreline; snowy mountain ranges and wildflowers; or magical, temperate forests shrouded in every shade of green – there is plenty to explore and discover in the nearly one million acres of Olympic National Park!
A day in Olympic is like visiting three national parks in one, due to its vastly different ecosystems: ocean beach, alpine mountains, and ancient rainforests. Popular activities to do include hiking, backpacking, camping, fishing, beach walking, and sea kayaking.
The ocean, forest, and mountain landscapes of Olympic ensure a rich variety of wildlife that you’ll find in few other national parks. Offshore you’ll find whales, dolphins, sea lions, seals, and sea otters. Within the mountains and forests roam bears, elk, cougars, and deer. Even the waters teem with Pacific salmon!
ACMNP in Olympic provides:
Our teams in Olympic typically serve at several locations: 2-3 team members at Lake Crescent, 2-3 team members at Sol Duc Hot Springs, and 2-3 team members at Kalaloch. Locations are approximately 45 minutes to 1 ½ hours away from one another.
Ministry team members seek employment from Aramark at Lake Crescent Lodge, Sol Duc Hot Springs, or Kalaloch Lodge, depending upon ministry assignment offered.
"I’m glad I did ACMNP because it was a great way for me to begin getting ministry experience and preparing messages. While there were challenging times, ACMNP pushed me to remember that we are God’s hands and feet. We are representatives for God in this world and people are aware of what we say and how we act."
Olympic National Park, WA
What should I expect?
Are you ready for an adventure of a lifetime? You have come to the right place. In addition to having a national park as your backyard, you will have the opportunity to engage in meaningful and important ministry efforts. National parks, although beautiful, are remote and challenging locations.
Can I choose my park?
While we cannot guarantee that you will get your top preference, we do consider your requests as we assemble teams. There is a section of the application where you will be able to list your top three park preferences.
If we are not able to offer you the park of your choosing, we will suggest an alternate park location that might fit with your interests and team needs. We ask that you apply to ACMNP for the ministry experience more than the park location, and we will do our best to find a good fit.
As you can imagine, team assembly is a complicated process. Every team member placement has to take into account employer needs, team needs, dates of availability, various ministry logistics, and applicant interests. We appreciate your flexibility and openness through this process. Trust us, by the end of a summer with ACMNP, every team member claims their national park as the best national park. There really is no bad placement!
What does a typical week look like?
One of the greatest ministry opportunities you will have is through your seasonal employment. Working 40-hours each week through the local hospitality concessionaire gives you the opportunity to get to know and work alongside those within the community. Not only does your employment provide you with an income, but working in this context gives you credibility for your ministry as you become friends with people who may have negative associations with Christians. That said, a big portion of your week will be your job, which is also a significant part of your ministry.
Can I apply with a friend?
Yes, you can absolutely apply with a friend! You will find a section on the application to indicate who you are hoping to serve with, please be sure to list them there.
If you are applying with a group of people, we would strongly encourage you to separate into pairs, and spread out into multiple parks. The experience is typically much stronger when you are serving on a team with new friends from different backgrounds. Not to mention, groups of friends serving in multiple parks generally enjoy sharing their experiences and encouraging one another from across the parks.
Who are we looking for?
What will this cost me?
Ministry Team Members will actually earn an income through seasonal employment with private park hospitality companies (concessionaires). Additionally, seminarians enrolled in a seminary or theological graduate program will be eligible for a $2,000 scholarship stipend ($3,000 for returning seminarian leaders). If you are interested in our Advanced Leadership Development Program, you can earn $1000 through your participation. Room and board is provided at minimal cost and differs by national park location and employer. You will find quickly that living in a national park is very inexpensive, and most team members usually walk away with $2500-3000 in their pockets by the end of the summer!
ACMNP's ministry in the national parks is a specialized effort and presents unique challenges. Therefore, every ministry team member is required to attend the ACMNP National Training Conference. There is a $25 application fee to process your application, and a $350 program fee to cover training, program, and season expenses. We have a reduced fee of $275 for returning alumni. Some team members choose to raise support to help cover these costs.
Please also note that Ministry Team Members are responsible for transportation to/from the training conference and transportation to/from the national park where they will serve.
You are just a few clicks away from a life-changing season in a national park! Can you hear the call? What are you waiting for…
The Lord said, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”