Adopt a Park or Trail Program Guidelines:

  • Any family, community group, organization, academic institution, church or business may request to participate in the Adopt a Park or Trail program.
  • Groups must agree to adopt a minimum of one section of trail or one park for a period of two years, and commit to a cleanup of the adopted park or trail on a quarterly basis.  Failure to clean up on a quarterly basis may result in the loss of your group's adoption.
  • Groups may select from any park or trail section in West Des Moines that is eligible for adoption.
  • To adopt a park or trail, groups must complete the online Adoption Form.MWA logo
  • West Des Moines Parks and Recreation Department will review the adoption request and send an email or call the group main contact confirming the adoption if it is approved. Confirmation must be received prior to the scheduled cleanup. 
  • Safety Guidelines (listed below) must be reviewed before each cleanup and each participant must sign the Volunteer Information / Release and Waiver of Liability Form.
  • Participants under the age of 18 must have adult supervision at all cleanup activities.
  • Groups will have trash bags provided. Groups are encouraged to recycle as much as possible.
  • Groups must report results after each cleanup via the online Cleanup Results Form in order to document your commitment.
  • A personalized sign recognizing the group will be placed on site after the initial cleanup has been reported.


Adopt a Park or Trail Safety Guidelines:

The Safety Guidelines are intended to keep all participants in the Adopt a Park or Trail program safe. They cannot, however, cover all situations that volunteers may encounter and it is the responsibility of all participants, especially group leaders, to use their best judgment to maintain the safety of everyone involved at all times.

  • Dress appropriately for the weather. Closed toed shoes, long pants and sturdy gloves are recommended. Hats, sunscreen and insect repellent are also recommended.
  • When working near a roadway, wear a safety vest and/or bright colored clothing to be seen easily by motorists.
  • Work only during daylight hours and only in favorable weather.
  • Have plenty of water on hand.
  • Take breaks and avoid overexertion, especially in hot weather.
  • Avoid working alone. Work in groups and use the buddy system.
  • Have a first aid kit at the cleanup sight.
  • Be aware of personal surroundings at all times. Stay alert to the dangers posed by changing weather, wildlife, passing cars, poisonous plants (pay special attention to poison ivy and wild parsnip in no-mow areas) or any other hazards that might be encountered at your site.
  • Do NOT pick up litter from road surfaces.
  • Do NOT pick up hazardous materials (hypodermic needles, chemicals, dead animals, etc.) or unknown materials that may be hazardous. Call West Des Moines Parks Department at 515-222-3450.
  • Do NOT participate in litter cleanups while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Do NOT attempt to cleanup in any area that may pose a personal risk to volunteers such as dangerous overhangs, hard to reach areas, etc.
  • Do NOT walk on or beside railroad tracks or leave trash bags on or near railroad tracks.