Park People: Don and Carime Kellermeier
Meet Don and Carime Kellermeier, volunteers at Metroparks Toledo.
Don and Carime have volunteered with Metroparks for 30 years. Currently, they both serve on the Board of the Volunteers In Parks (VIP) and help determine the VIP fundraising events and how those funds will be spent in support of the parks. For example, VIP’s sponsor a semi-annual Pancake Breakfast in June and September. Our rule is 100% of the money earned is returned to Metroparks by purchasing items requested by the park staff. Some examples of the items purchased include the American flags flown at all parks (we purchased the flag pole at the Schoolhouse at Wildwood too!), new specialized bikes for the rangers, and fabric purchased for the sewing circle volunteers to create historically accurate costumes for interpreters.
Carime also volunteers 12-15 hours a month with Volunteer Services doing various tasks helpful to the Volunteer Coordinators such as data entry and filing, folding hundreds of t-shirts, creating name badges for program participants—whatever is helpful to free up their time for organizing and training volunteers to implement the programs available to our community. Carime had also welcomed park visitors at the front reception desk for many years and has helped in the Central Services offices.
Don and Carime say they volunteer because it’s important to give back to our community rather than stand on the sidelines. It’s important for the good health of our community to do what we can to advance the quality of life in our community and Metroparks gives us that opportunity to be part of that growth. Metroparks offers experiences and knowledge to everyone of all ages…generally activities not offered anywhere else and at little or no cost.
Don and Carime believe their work is useful to the Metroparks staff and they feel appreciated. Our volunteering has purpose and we see the results of our efforts in the growth of the Metroparks system, which is a gem in our community that offers a wide range of activities to every age group. The activities are fun! One of the very best reasons for volunteering is that we meet so many great people. Volunteers we’ve met are generous, committed to doing good, and we find our work with others toward a common goal is rewarding. Many of our best friends are volunteers we’ve met through working together at our work at Metroparks.
Don and Carime’s say their favorite park is Wildwood Preserve, it’s absolutely beautiful in all seasons – and 1.3 miles from home.
Fun Fact: Don is an accomplished woodworker, creating gifts for family and friends and building at least a dozen pieces of beautiful heirloom quality furniture for their home. Carime always has a project of counted cross stitch close at hand.
When asked to describe the best thing that happened while volunteering with us, they said the opportunity to be an integral part of the organization that provides wonderful opportunities for everyone in the community. Programs are high quality experiences whether you’re interested in history, hiking, paddling sports, photography, nature – and the list goes on.
We thank Don and Carime, and all our #ParksPeople, for making Metroparks Toledo the safe, natural place for all.