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 Brant 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 Brant, 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 2-4 hour shifts during the week and slightly longer shifts on the weekend.  To volunteer, contact Lesley at 507-400-4331.

Around FiftyNorth

Pool Monitors

Pool monitors serve as an extra set of eyes in our warm water pool area and are trained to know how to call for assistance in an emergency situation.  They volunteer in two hour shifts during open swim times. A pool or fitness pass is given for each hour of monitoring. 

If you are interested in volunteering as a pool monitor, contact Craig Swenson, 507-664-3702


What is a closing buddy?

Our closing buddy volunteers accompany our receptionist for 15 minutes during end-of-day closing procedures. This promotes the safety and security of our staff and members. Pick an evening or Saturday afternoon that works for you. For further details or to sign up, please contact Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 

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. They haul furniture from private homes to Used-A-Bit. This group volunteers on Friday mornings. If you are interested in volunteering on the work crew, contact Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 


Many of the teachers of our educational and art 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 at 507-664-3709 or Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 

Group Coordinators

Each of the group activities has one leader who oversees the group. These groups include several card playing groups, needlework, book club, bike club, table tennis, photography club, art club, softball, American Mahjongg, history group, theater, band, women’s choir, chimes group. If you are interested in leading a group, contact Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 

Travel Committee

The travel committee plans and organizes day trips to a variety of events and places of interest. They plan an occasional overnight adventure. This entails securing reservations and transportation. If you have any interest in being part of this committee, contact Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 



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 is also home to a raised vegetable garden, which is tended by volunteers. If you’d like to help with our courtyard gardens, contact Patty Ciernia at 507-664-3709. 


Bakers for Events

Occasionally, we serve baked goods and refreshments at special events at FiftyNorth. Volunteers who enjoy baking share their delicious treats with eventgoers. If you would like to bake for an event, contact Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 


Board of Directors

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


Reading with 5th Graders

Share your love of reading with 5th graders from Bridgewater Elementary School. Support a student, build a connection and have fun! You will be partnered with 2-3 students to listen to them read. Students bring their own books; you bring your attention! Join us at FiftyNorth the second Wednesday of the month, 2:00-2:30 for the entire school year. This program started in 2000, and continued each year until the pandemic. We are delighted to bring it back, but can’t do it without your help. Please join us and see why students AND volunteers alike call this one of their favorite parts of their month. If you are interested in reading with 5th graders contact Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 


Special Events Volunteers

Throughout the year FiftyNorth hosts specials programs and events. A special events volunteer would set up tables and chairs, decorate, take tickets, hand out programs… Join this crew of volunteers to make events more special and run smoothly. If you would like to be a special events volunteer please contact Michelle at 507-664-3707. 


Out in the Community

Meals on Wheels

In collaboration with other organizations and individuals from the community, our volunteers deliver Meals on Wheels to community members in need of a meal. Meals are picked up at the Northfield Hospital, delivered, then the containers are returned to the hospital after completing the route.

If you are willing to deliver meals, contact Michelle Brant at 507-664-3707. 

Community Events

Northfield is known for its special community events calendar throughout the year. At events where FiftyNorth can have a presence, we often need volunteers to share all that we do with the greater community! This might include staffing a table at an outdoor booth, walking or driving with the DJJD parade float, or providing information to passerby at the Riverwalk Market Fair.

If you’re interested in representing FiftyNorth at a community event, contact Kerry Hjelmgren at 507-664-3701