Jay Cooke’s annual candlelight event is coming up this week, Saturday February 9 from 6 – 9 pm. This year it looks like everything is coming together (bathrooms – working, water – running, snow – YES!) so we’re looking forward to holding this event. This event attracts 100’s of participants, so we really appreciate all the volunteers that help us with setting this up. This is where we hoping you might be interested in participating.

We are looking for volunteers to help with any one of our three shifts.

Some basics:

  • We have people work in teams, so you’re not out there by yourself
  • Although the entire trail is 1.8 miles we only have volunteers work a section of it so you’d need to be able to walk/ski about ½ – ¾ mile.
  • We love volunteers of all ages, so if you want to bring your young one along please do. As long as they are supervised by yourself and can contribute to the task they’re welcome to join us.
  • You can walk, snowshoe or ski. We have snowshoes to borrow if you wish. We use sleds to carry the bags and candles.
  • This involves bending. Filling the bags with snow, placing the candles, lighting or taking it all apart depending on the shift.
  • Bonus! – As a thank you we feed you … volunteers are welcome to join the staff potluck.

The shifts:

  1. Set-up 1 – 3 pm (depending on the number of volunteers this is often shorter). Set out the bags and candles on the event trail.
  2. Lighting 4:30 – 6 pm Right before the event starts we send out our volunteers to light all the candles.
  3. Take down 9 – 10 pm Blow out the candles, pick up the bags and candles.

If you are available to help with this event please let me know:

  1. Who? (if you’re volunteering more than one person)
  2. What shift are you available for?
  3. Are you walking, snowshoeing or skiing? (this help me pair up people)

Thanks for your consideration, and regardless we hope to see you out on the trail!


Kristine Hiller
Interpretive Naturalist | Minnesota Parks and Trails
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
Jay Cooke State Park
780 Highway 210
Carlton, MN 55718
Phone: 218-673-7005
Email: kris.hiller@state.mn.us