The AHLF has a variety of volunteer opportunities available for those who would like to donate a few hours of their time, whether it be weekly, monthly or a specific amount of hours. We offer opportunities from ages 16 - 100 of all walks of life. From administrative, to education, to events, to trails and outdoor projects, we are very flexible with schedules and needs. We do provide opportunities for court required hours, service learning, and adult learners. All volunteers must complete an application and an orientation prior to volunteering, unless it is specifically event related. We hold volunteer orientations on Tuesday’s at 1:00pm and Saturdays at 1:00pm. Other times and arrangements can be made by emailing Once you submit the application below you will receive an email confirming the application was received and when the orientation times are being held this week. Please do not just show up to an orientation time without confirming via email.

Due to the increased volume in volunteer applications, it might take up to one week to receive a response once your application is submitted. 

Discovery Center Docents

Greet visitors during public open hours and answer basic questions about the Lagoon Foundation and the Center's programs and exhibits. This is a great way to get to know the inner workings of the Discovery Center and provide valuable assistance to the Center's team. Training is provided.

Anytime during regular hours of operation:

Monday -Saturday 9am-4pm

Sunday 12-4pm

Native Plant Garden

The Discovery Center has one of the largest, most extensive California Native Plant gardens in North County and requires continuous maintenance. If you love working outdoors in a beautiful setting, you will enjoy volunteering in our garden. Working in the garden is a wonderful way to learn more about native plants and the wildlife that live there.


If you enjoy working with kids, join our team of volunteers who regularly assist during school field trips held at the Discovery Center. Volunteers assist the teachers and help coordinate logistics during school visits.

Current offerings include our Preschool Playdates Program from 9am - 1pm Monday through Friday. After School Enrichment Program from 2:30pm - 5:30pm Tuesday - Friday. And Kids Klub on Tuesdays once a month from 2:30 - 4 and Saturdays once a month from 9 to 10:15am. 

*Because there are no current school field trips scheduled, this is not currently being offered. 

Seasonal Festivals and Special Events

The Discovery Center hosts special events and seasonal Festivals throughout the year. These are generally one day events or workshops that attract hundreds of visitors. A variety of volunteers opportunities exist with these events.

Trail Maintenance

The AHLF provides maintenance for various trails and public access points surrounding the lagoon including the Hubbs, Kelly, Cove Drive, Bayshore Drive, and Discovery Center Trails. Organized maintenance events occur typically once a month which may include installation of signs, invasive species removal, native planting, and erosion control. Independent volunteers are also needed to walk the trail, pick up trash, report illegal fires and graffiti, and do minor trail maintenance. Requires some hard physical labor.

Algerian Sea Lavender Removal

In conjunction with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, California Department of Fish & Wildlife and the Nature Collective, the AHLF is attempting to eradicate Algerian Sea Lavender (an invasive species) in the lagoon watershed. This project is 100% funded by the US Fish & Wildlife Service and corresponds and collaborates with the Coastal Program Coordinater of Southern California. Volunteering for this effort requires physical labor and ability to walk through the mud flats. We need volunteers to hand-pull plants on a weekly basis and assist in tarping large areas, as well as monitor the results when the tarps are pulled. This process is known as solarization. To specifically volunteer for this project please email:


Monthly Restoration Events

Join our group one Saturday each month and restore native habitat and maintain trails with fellow community members. Sign up today to participate in the next monthly restoration event:

Email to participate in a monthly trail event.

Haunted Corn Maze

We team up with the Carlsbad Strawberry Company to create the perfect thrilling experience for the community, manned by volunteers! This is a fundraiser for the Foundation. Volunteers are needed from 6pm – 10:30pm in the month of October (Friday and Saturdays only). Volunteers must be able to stay the entire shift - the maze is "unsupervised" and students/adults must be responsible to stay in position. Age 16 and above recommended, unless being supervised paired with an adult (then can be younger). There will be a floater to relieve for bathroom/water break. Snacks provided as well at the end. Closed toed shoes/comfortable wear recommended. (if you have a scary Halloween costume, you are welcome to wear your own, but they are provided). It is a really fun time with a friend or group of friends. We need a lot of volunteers to fill the shifts, feel free to spread the word!

If you are interested in volunteering, please fill out our volunteer application below.



We appreciate and thank you for volunteering at the Discovery Center. Below is information that can better assist us planning events throughout the year.

Hours of Operation: Monday - Saturday 9am to 4pm Sunday 12pm to 4pm