Volunteer Opportunities

FiftyNorth needs 200 plus volunteers per week to run all of our programming. Volunteers donate their time and talents in a variety of ways and commit as much time as they want. If you would like to volunteer, contact Volunteer Coordinator, Michelle Loken or any of the program coordinators listed for the activity. Cheers to our volunteers!

Here’s a description of our current volunteer opportunities.  If you would like to volunteer, please contact Volunteer Coordinator, Michelle Loken, at 507-664-3707 or any of the program coordinators listed for the activity you are interested in.


Used-a-Bit Shoppe

The Used a Bit Shoppe needs volunteers who can work 2 to 4 hours per week in all aspects of the Shoppe operation – as cashiers, as fix-it folk, as people checking new donations in, and more.  Volunteers say, “This is a great place to be!  It’s fun to help unloading the goodies that come in, and we’ve been having good sales, which is also fun.”  All proceeds from the Shoppe go to support the operations of FiftyNorth.  To volunteer contact Shoppe Manager Dolores Kornkven, 507-645-1399.

Popcorn Wagon

FiftyNorth provides a community gathering spot in downtown Northfield with its vintage popcorn wagon located at Bridge Square.  Operated during the summer and early fall months by volunteers, the bright red wagon with yellow wheels welcomes visitors and community residents alike.  Boasting the tastiest popcorn and cheapest soft drinks in town, the volunteers at the 1918 wagon provide information about Northfield, directions for newcomers, and a welcome to all who stop by for a snack and a cool drink.
The Popcorn Wagon is operated on Bridge Square mid-May through mid-September.
Volunteers work 2-1/2 hour shifts during the week and slightly longer shifts on the weekend.  To volunteer, contact Lesley at 507-400-4331.

Around FiftyNorth

Pool and Fitness Room Monitors

Pool monitors serve as an extra set of eyes in our warm water pool area and are trained to know how call for assistance in an emergency situation. They volunteer in two hour shifts during all open swim times.  A pool or fitness pass is given for each hour of monitoring.
Fitness room volunteers open the workout room at 6 am Mon-Sat, other opportunities include cleaning machines, repair work and pitching in on annual cleaning day.
If you are interested in volunteering as a monitor, contact Craig Swenson, 507-664-3702



What is a closing buddy?
A community member who will volunteer to accompany our receptionist for 15 minutes during closing procedures. This will promote the safety and security of our staff and members. Pick a day(s) that work for you – one time, or on a regular schedule.

For further details or to sign up, please contact Michelle Loken, 507-664-3707 or [email protected]

Work Crew

The Work Crew is an active group of volunteers who fix things and do odd jobs around FiftyNorth and at the Used a Bit Shoppe. Last fall they installed new patio stones, hauled furniture for our Art Studio and the Used a Bit Shoppe, and installed new lighting for the stage. This group gathers regularly on Fridays.


Many of the teachers of our educational programs are volunteers.  If you have an area of expertise that you would like to share by teaching a class or giving a talk, contact Patty Ciernia, 507-664-3709 or Michelle Loken, 507-664-3707.

Group Coordinators

Each of our group activities has one leader who oversees the activities of the group. These groups include several card playing groups, woodcarving, needlework, quilting, and paper crafting groups, a retired teachers group, a book club, bike club and table tennis group, plus our 3 music groups -FiftyNorth Band, Seasoned Singers, and Chime Choir.


We have a team of gardeners who plan and tend our on-site gardens and indoor plants. Schedules vary.   FiftyNorth has flower gardens gracing our entrance and enlivening an inner courtyard.  The courtyard also is home to a raised vegetable garden, which is tended by volunteers.  If you’d like to help with our courtyard gardens, contact Patty Ciernia, 507-664-3709.

Out in the Community

In collaboration with other organizations, our volunteers help with these programs: Meals on Wheels (delivering meals prepared at the Hospital to people who need them).
To volunteer, contact Michelle Loken 507-664-3707

Committee Work

As a non-profit FiftyNorth is governed by a Board of Directors.  Our board is composed of 15 members chosen from the membership of FiftyNorth and elected at an Annual Meeting to serve 3-year terms.  In addition, the Board has five standing committees: Finance, Membership, Facilities, Nominating, Marketing, and Advancement.
If you would be interested in serving on one of these Board committees or serving on the Board of Directors, contact Kerry Hjelmgren, 507-664-3701.


FiftyNorth has Program Committees, which plan and execute these programs: Travel and Art Gallery.
If you are interested in serving on one of these committees, contact Michelle Loken 507-664-3707, and she can put you in touch with the appropriate committee chair.