Volunteers are vital to the day-to-day operations of Washington Crossing Historic Park. From special event support to tours, education and reenactments, volunteers help us provide thousands of visitors each year with a truly special experience.
Every April, in honor of National Volunteer Month, we recognize several individuals and organizations who have helped us deliver upon our mission over the past year. Please join us in celebrating our 2022 honorees:
Volunteer of the Year – Bob Dupre
For six years, Bob Dupre has participated in the park’s annual Christmas Crossing reenactments and led thousands of children through the Soldier’s Drill station at our events and Colonial Days school programs. As part of the Marbleheaders, Bob is regularly on site ensuring our Durham Boats are maintained. In that role, he chooses to interact with each visitor he encounters at the Boat Barn. Bob is also an integral part of the Fife and Drum Corps, assisting the Corps throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. With these three roles, Bob contributed nearly 220 volunteer hours throughout 2021.
“I’m very flattered by this award. I feel like I get more out of volunteering than the park gets from me. I really love doing it. I love being at the park. It’s a beautiful place and an important place. I have a number of revolutionary war ancestors and its long been rumored that my fifth great grandfather was involved in the crossing in 1776. I’ve done some research and he probably wasn’t there, but he and his brothers all served in Rhode Island regiments during the revolution. I began volunteering at the park after retiring in 2016 and have been involved ever since. I’ve been a rower in the Crossing reenactment every year as one of Glover’s Marblehead Regiment, I’m in the Fife and Drum Corps, and I help maintain the boats. You’d be surprised at what you’re allowed to do if you just ask and say you want to help.”
Jr. Volunteer of the Year – Jillian Miller
The park has had the privilege of watching Jillian Miller grow up. She has helped as an interpretation and event volunteer and a Colonial Days Summer Camp counselor for years.
She also regularly attends our lecture series. As a 2021 intern, while planning an extremely successful summer camp, Jillian actively chose to research and identify African-American Marbleheaders who crossed. Their research will be invaluable to the park.
“I was super surprised when I found out I won the Junior Volunteer of the Year award. This might sound cliché, but I’m the type of person who likes to lift other people up over myself, so I’m not used to being the one getting the award. I’m very proud to go forward having this honor. My interest in the park and history stems from my parents both working in museums, and I hope to follow in their footsteps. My time volunteering at the park and the internship I did there during the summer of 2021 helped me solidify my decision to pursue a career in that field.”
Rising Star – Lindsay Craig
Prior to February 2020, Lindsay Craig had helped at the park with Bloomberg Volunteers.
Since joining as a park volunteer in 2020, Lindsay has volunteered to help at every single in-person event the park has had, with just 3 exceptions. She has stepped up as a leader at admission tables at events and helped ensure that her fellow Bloomberg Volunteers colleagues were in the loop for the First Crossing event in 2021.
Lindsay is a true example of the equal importance of interpretation AND special event volunteers.
Outstanding Leadership – Paul Beck
Paul Beck heads up the Durham Boat Boatwrights. This team cleans and maintains the replica Durham Boats we use every year in the crossing, including the oars, sweeps, and more.
As the head of the Marbleheaders and an active member of the Reenactor Organizing Committee, Paul has led soldier’s drills at Colonial Days school programs and events for years. The park’s programs would not be the same without Paul and his teams. In 2021, Paul contributed over 100 volunteer hours.
Outstanding Long-Term Service – Upper Makefield Township Police Department/Upper Makefield Fire Company
The Upper Makefield Township Police Department and Upper Makefield Fire Company have worked with the State and Friends of Washington Crossing Park to ensure a safe crossing event for decades.
During the First Crossing and Christmas Crossing Reenactment, they help ensure all reenactors and visitors are safe. The UMTPD Chief, Mark F. Schmidt, has personally been at every single Christmas crossing with just 2 exceptions for 42 years. One of the Crossings he missed was 2020, when the event was virtual. The Friends of Washington Crossing Park are proud to recognize UMTPD and UMFC’s service.