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The Foss Waterway Seaport always accepts inquires from prospective volunteers. Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community while sharpening or even learning completely new skills. No time committment is too small and we take volunteers with all types of skill levels. If you have a desire to share your time and unique talents at an organization that appeals to your maritime interests, we would love to hear from you.

Our volunteers tell us that volunteering at the Seaport is great fun.

Join our volunteer family!

  • "I just love seeing the children's faces when they show me their finished boats." – Shirley Milatz
  • "This is my favorite place to volunteer. It gives me satisfaction, seeing an historical wooden boat come to life." – Dennis Barstow, restoring a 1960s era Poulsbo Boat
  • "I come for the relaxation and to be around nice people. If I can help restore a boat while I'm here, it's even better." – Richard Sims

Volunteers help out in a variety of departments. From greeting our guests and leading tours to assisting in our education or collections departments, our volunteers can expect to get involved with a variety of projects. The Foss Waterway Seaport also hosts numerous events throughout the year such as our Maritime Festival. Volunteers help us ensure that these events connect with our community and reinforce our shared love of Tacoma and the rich maritime history of our region.


Volunteer registration

We have two ways to register your interest in volunteering with us.
Use our Volunteer Registration Page and we'll get your submission in mere moments! While we do get an email alert whenever someone submits a volunteer request, please give us at least 48 hours to contact you before contacting us to followup on your submission. -Thank You.
Not interested in using our webform? 
We'll take your application through the mail or submitted via email. You may submit your forms to info [at] fosswaterwayseaport [dot] org or our mailing address is: 705 Dock Street, Tacoma, WA 98402.
If you are submitting a paper application, please also download and sign our volunteer release form. You must understand and sign a release with us prior to any volunteer activities here at the Seaport.

Interested in volunteering in our Boat Shop?

The Foss Waterway Seaport Boat Shop is a “working” boat shop; building new wood projects such as a pram, dory, kayak and miscellaneous items; restoring/repairing some of our existing museum vessel collections. The Boat Shop values those who volunteer their time to be involved in learning, sharing and enjoying boat shop experiences. You do not have to be knowledgeable in tool use – we will help you.

We ask that before you contact us about volunteering here in the boat shop, you watch this series of videos which comprises our tool training program. These videos either introduce or help reacquaint our new volunteers with the power and hand tools in use here in the boat shop.

Training Videos

Once you have completed the videos, we can arrange a time for you to come into the Boat Shop and demonstrate, under the guidance of our Shop Foreman, how to best use these tools.

This will enable all of the volunteers to work together to have fun and enjoy working on projects in a safe environment. In addition to the training videos on proper tool use, emergency evacuation procedures, the proper use of safety glasses, gloves and masks and a Foss Waterway Seaport building orientation will be presented during an additional session.

Should you have any questions, please reply via an email to: Barbara Tronca, Boat Shop Chairman at bgtboats [at] comcast [dot] net

We look forward to hearing from you and having you join our merry group of volunteers!