The Town of Riverhead Adopt-A-Park Program is designed to encourage the community to work hands-on to help keep Riverhead's parks and beaches clean and attractive. This program creates a framework under which residents and resident groups or organizations can contribute to the Town by "adopting" a section of a park or beach, and agreeing to improve it through litter/debris pick-up, reporting of hazards or maintenance needs, and other manual labor. The program also provides and opportunity for people to get involved with their community!
Who can participate?
This program is open to any individuals, youth groups, neighborhood associations, civic groups, faith based organizations, athletic organizations, service organizations, schools, businesses and other community organizations in the Town of Riverhead that are interested. The Town of Riverhead Parks Department and Buildings & Grounds Dept provide routine park and beach inspections & maintenance repairs. The adopting groups or individuals will be able to give these locations the extra care and attention they may need. Adopters share in improving and enhancing the Town's parks and beaches by working on a variety of approved projects.
What can you do?
Volunteers can: pick up litter, rake leaves, report park hazards and graffiti, sweep courts and pathways, pull weeds, plan plants, paint buildings, and report storm damage and other hazards. (Some of the above mentioned tasks require approval from the Town)
Requirements & expectations
We ask for a minimum commitment of one year of service to your adopted park or beach. To complete a minimum of six visits/clean ups per year. At the end of your initial commitment, you can renew with the Parks office approval.
Each organization will select a spokesperson. This person will be the point of contact for the organization. They will also be responsible to assure that each participant complies with the Adopt-A-Park Program requirements, safety procedures and has signed a liability release with the Town of Riverhead. The spokesperson will pick up and return supplies and notify the Parks of any hazardous items.
The adopting individual or gorup must enter into a signed agreement with the Town of Riverhead Parks & Recreation Department.
Parks & Beaches will be assigned on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Planting flowers, trees, or shrubs, painting facilities, and carpentry projects must be approved by the Town of Riverhead and Parks & Recreation Department.
All work must be performed during daylight hours.
All volunteers under the age of 18 must have responsible adult supervision.
All adopting groups may keep any and all proceeds from any material with recyclable value that is found.
Once your application is approved, Town staff will train the group leader, group, or individual to do the tasks for which you have volunteered.
Volunteers must read, understand, and abide by the safety guidelines in this handbook and all park and beach rules and regulations.
Once you are trained, you and your group will be considered to be active volunteers.
Basic Tasks: tasks that can be done at your park on a regular basis, do not need approval or supervision from Park staff, and do not require special tools.
Litter removal, sweeping courts and pathways, weeding, inspection report, reporting hazards, graffiti, damage, etc.
Advanced Tasks: tasks that require approval and/or supervision from park staff, as well as special training and debris removal.
Planting projects, major weed removal or pruning, repainting fixtures, and any other tasks not designated as Basic Tasks.
If you are interested in performing an advanced task at your park, please fill out the Advanced Task Request Form & the Supply Request Form 4 weeks prior to your proposed project date.
Volunteers must keep track of all hours spent working on a quarterly basis and report total hours to Park staff on the Report form. The Park staff will document this information and will help the program in the following ways:
Justifies need for more tools/supplies when drafting the budget
Confirms the growth or decline of volunteer participation
Assists students that are required to perform community service hours.
Adding members to your group
New members that join your group must sign and return the Volunteer Service Agreement and Release prior to performing any tasks in the park.
Group leaders are responsible for training new members.
Group leaders must inform the park staff of new members by completing the Group Member Addition/Removal Form.
The Parks Office provides you with some supplies needed to assist you in your duties. This will help you do your job and keep our parks and beaches clean. The following tools are available to be checked out: Trash bags, Garbage pickers, Rakes & Brooms.
All tools are available on a check out basis. Except for trash bags, tools must be returned within 5 days following completion of your tasks. For basic tasks, please fill our supply request form and return to the park staff at least 2 weeks before you need them.
You will be required to sign the Tool Check out Form for tools provided to you. By promptly returning your checked-out tools, you allow other groups to use the tools and help the Town save money!
An official certificate of adoption.
An adoption plaque with the adopter's name or group on it, which will be posted at the adopter's site after 20 hours of volunteer reported hours. The sign will remain posted as long as the group/individual remains an active volunteers.
Advertise adopter on the Riverhead Recreation website.
Mention adopter in the Parks & Recreation Program Brochure.
When you are no longer able to volunteer in your park or beach, we ask you to complete a permit renewal or cancellation form and send to the parks office. Upon receipt of your cancellation, and as a thank you for your service. Park staff will:
Send a retirement certificate and letter to the group leader or individual
Remove your plaque from your park or beach and mail it to you.
The Parks & Recreation Department welcomes donations as part of the Adopt-A-Park program. Contributions towards maintenance supplies such as paint or improvement items such as materials for benches, picnic tables, grills, kiosks, bulletin boards, etc are welcome. You must speak with Park staff before purchasing any supplies or items to be used at the Park/Beach facility.
Wear sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat for protection from the sun.
Wear work gloves and/or latex gloves at all times.
Wear boots or sturdy, closed toe shoes.
Drink plenty of fluids.
Use caution when working near the street.
Stay within designated cleanup boundaries.
Have all volunteers sign the volunteer waiver before participating. If volunteers are minors, their parents or guardian must sign.
Do not trespass on private property.
Be extremely cautious working near a body of water.
Supervise children at all times.
Lift objects with your legs, not your back.
Tie bags tightly.
Leave pets at home.
Obey all Park & Beach Rules & Regulations.
Beware of bees, poison ivy, poison oak, and other irritants.
Do not apply pesticide or herbicide.
Do not operate machinery or dangerous equipment.
Wash your hands throroughly when you're done.
Provide a cell phone number for the group leader and list of emergency contact numbers.
Do not pick up any of the following items. Please alert the groups leader and others in the area. The group leader should notify 631-727-3200 x733 or x734 / 631-466-0883 if any of these items are identified: hypodermic needles, medical waste, chemical containers, dead animals, sharp items (broken glass, etc).
Report all accidents involving injury or equipment damage to your volunteer supervisor and Park Staff. For emergecy assistance all 9-1-1.
Always wear work gloves
Work only during daylight hours
Work with a partner whenever possible
Do not work under dangerous weather conditions
Don't overexert yourself. Be sure to take breaks and drink plenty of fluid.
Don't lift with your back, lift with your legs!
Don't pick up materials that you suspect might be hazardous such as needles, medical waste, drug paraphernalia, etc.
Don't pick up litter close to the edge of curbs unless oncoming traffic is clearly visible.
Tie bags tightly before disposal
Do not stomp trash bags as there may be sharp objects that could puncture the bag.
If trash cans are full, place your filled bags next to the cans. If you are planning a major clean-up and are anticipating filling a large number of bags please contact the Parks Office to arrange for bag pick up.
Before removing weeks, check with appropriate staff for approval.
Contact the park staff to coordinate in advance for pick up of clippings.
Wear protective gear: glasses, long pants and long sleeves, sturdy work shoes and gloves.
Do not use power equipment, it is against Town policy.
Do not work under potentially dangerous weather conditions.
Don't spray any chemicals, it is against Town policy.
Be cautious around thorny or poisonous bushes.
Do not bag weed clippings unless specified by park staff.
Do not block pathways or trails.
Be cautious and respectful of pedestrians, cyclists, and other park and beach goers.
Important phone numbers
Town of Riverhead: 631-727-3200 Parks Office x737 Ray Coyne- Superintendent of Parks & Recreation x730 Ashley Schandel- Parks Director x733 Jordan Harden- Parks Supervisor x734 Police Non-Emergency 631-727-4500
AReas for Adoption
2 Bears Park
Bayberry Park (Police Officers Memorial Park)
Community Garden Playground
Duck Ponds @ Wading River
Edwards Avenue Waterfront- ADOPTED
George Schmelzer Park
Horton Avenue Park
Hulse Landing Waterfront
Iron Pier Beach- ADOPTED
Meeting House Creek Park
Miamogue Park & Waterfront
Millbrook Gables Park
Milton Burns Park
Roanoke Ave Waterfront/Beach
South Jamesport Beach
Sound Avenue Nature Preserve
Picnic #1 (Basketball, Tennis, Handball area)
Picnic #2 (Playground, Walking Path area)
Skate Park/Roller Rink
Veterans Memorial Park
Dog Park/Picnic Area
Wading River Beach
Weeping Willow Park
Please fill out the following application
For questions please contact Ashley at 631-727-3200 x733 OR firstname.lastname@example.org
Town of Riverhead Recreation Department 60 Shade Tree Lane Riverhead, NY 11901 (631) 727-3200 x205 8:30 am to 4:00 pm
Town of Riverhead Parks Department 55 Columbus Ave. Riverhead, NY 11901 (631) 727-3200 x737 7:30 am to 3:00 pm