Mclay State Park and Gardens

Family and New Adventures

Even though it was still brutally hot in the SE we wanted to take time to visit with Joanna’s family in Tallahassee.  So after getting ourselves legal again we headed over to the Tallahassee RV Park for two weeks.  We had lots of quality time with Joanna’s mom, taking her out to many lunches and dinners as well as spending time with her at Tapestry, her new residence.   We also had a lovely, but quick, visit with her brother Skip and her niece Madison as they too had come to visit Mom.

As we have hinted in previous posts, we have a new adventure coming up and Tallahassee was the perfect place to begin our research.  In fully exploring the RV lifestyle one facet we have yet to try is called Workamping.  There are as many definitions of Workamping as there are RV’ers but basically it is giving of your time and talents in exchange for a free campsite.  Workamping News states:

“Despite the common misconception, not all Workampers are retirees who work in campgrounds. Workampers are adventurous people from all backgrounds who basically work as they travel. Many travel in RV’s of various sizes and work in the outdoor hospitality industry, but so many more choose digital careers, freelance gigs, sales and other income generating careers to source their wanderlust.”

We have truly enjoyed traveling the country but life is not all about the next trail or waterfall.  We are still young enough that we want to continue to have an impact, give back to the community, and pass forward our life experiences.  And as Jonathan says, we are not yet on the reduced price shelf because we are past our use before date.  So before that happens, we decided to give Workamping a go.  

Back in January while we were in Seattle we decided to sign up for a Gold membership at  Mostly at that time we were just checking out what it meant to workamp and seeing what jobs might be available.  Lo and behold there are hundreds if not thousands of jobs available doing everything from being a cashier at Yellowstone to cleaning toilets at your local state park.  We spent a couple of weeks just browsing the job listings (with no real intent to sign up any time soon) when one listing caught Joanna’s eye.  There was a living history museum in Central Florida looking for volunteers.  Well, that was right up her ally as she had spent the last 5 years volunteering at the Depreciation Lands Museum in PA.  Plus, it would give her a chance to get back to storytelling.  After weighing the pros and cons, we decided to take a leap and apply for the position.  At that point we hadn’t even put our resumes up on the Workamping site as we were just dabbling in the possibilities.  

The first contacts we had with the museum, the Barberville Pioneer Settlement in Barberville, FL  were unsuccessful.  They told us that we would have been a perfect fit and they would have loved to have us but that the positions had all been filled by the time we applied.  Then in March we were surprised to get an email asking if we were still interested.  It turned out that one of the previous hires had to back out so we had the jobs!  We will be doing school programs for children showing them life as it was in the early 20th century.  Yes, Jonathan will be in overalls and a straw hat having little kids running around his ankles while he tries to teach them about farming on the Florida frontier.  


In exchange for 20 hours per person per week we will get a free full hook up site (all utilities) on the museum grounds in prime Central Florida from October 15th till the end of April!!  What a deal!!  We are really looking forward to this opportunity and have started educating ourselves on the time period (Joanna needs to jump 100 years from her time at the DLM) as well as immersing ourselves in Florida history.

We have always loved visiting historical sites and have been stopping at as many as we can along our southern route.  As we visited the Civil Rights Museum in TN and the Latta Plantation in NC we were learning about events and lifestyles that would influence our presentations at Barberville.  In between family visits in Tallahassee we ramped up our research.  Our first stop was at the Museum of Florida History.  

Then it was on to the Maclay Gardens State Park to learn about Florida horticulture and wildlife.

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The Tallahassee Automobile Museum was a fun diversion though they too had quite a few historical artifacts from the correct time period.  They had beautiful cars but this is not just a car museum. 

Then it was on to St. Marks to learn about coastal living.

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Then finally on to the Goodwood Museum to immerse ourselves in the height of fashion of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s.  Sorry no pictures inside!

After spending quality time with family and all of that research we were ready to find cooler weather.  Unfortunately, it has been so hot this summer we would have had to go to Canada to cool off so instead we decided to head north to the Smoky Mountains!  More on that in our next posts!

Till then!