Colonial Michilimackinac Interpreter – Civilian

Department: Museum Programs
Location: Colonial Michilimackinac, Mackinaw City
Start Date/End Date: Early May through early October
Pay Rate: Starting at $10/hr

Accepting applications for the 2020 season.

Scope of Duties:
This position serves visitors to Mackinac State Historic Parks (MSHP) by working as a costumed historical interpreter at Colonial Michilimackinac during the park’s summer season. The position is responsible for interpreting the role of civilian men and women at Michilimackinac during the 18th century. 


  • Put our visitors first by treating them as respected guests and serving their needs, and to provide an enjoyable and educational experience for guests to the park.
  • Interpret life amongst the civilian community of Michilimackinac in the late 18th century. Civilian interpreters will represent the British, French-Canadian, Metis, and Native American men and women who called Michilimackinac home, including fur merchants, household staff and domestic workers, voyageurs, skilled and unskilled laborers, laundresses, seamstresses and tailors, sailors, and family members of other military and civilian residents.
  • Lead or participate in regularly scheduled programs and walking tours discussing the fur trade, gardens, civilian foodways, 18th century culture, and the community of Michilimackinac.
  • Present informal interpretive programs concerning the Great Lakes fur trade, voyageur life, the roles of laundresses, servants, and other military support personnel, 18th century gardening techniques, construction and maintenance of clothing, and other tasks as needed.
  • Participate in other interpretive programs and special events as needed.

Position Requirements:

  • Must be 18 years or older as of first date of employment.
  • Must be able to follow verbal and written directions and be able to verbally communicate with others.
  • Must have an interest in historical interpretation and research.
  • Must be out-going, enthusiastic, and have strong public contact and speaking skills.
  • Experience with historic research, cooking over an open fire, gardening, sewing and mending, and doing other domestic activities is preferred but not required.
  • Must be able to work the number of weeks assigned (positions work 12 to 23 weeks and will start in early May or June and work to Labor Day or through October; length of employment will vary depending on the position).

Work Location and Schedule:
The workstation for this position is Colonial Michilimackinac in Mackinaw City, although the employee may be required to work at other MSHP park sites if park needs require it. The position is primarily based indoors in a reconstructed historic building at Colonial Michilimackinac, but outdoor work may be required on a regular basis as park needs dictate. Work schedules are posted in advance and are subject to change depending on park operational needs. A normal work schedule is 40 hours per week; however, hours, days, and weeks worked may vary.  The employee may be asked to work evenings, holidays, and/or weekends as park needs dictate.

Physical Requirements:
Stretching and bending are moves commonly made throughout the day by employees in this position. The employee must have the ability to do the following activities, with or without, reasonable accommodation: Frequent lifting, carrying, transporting, loading and unloading of supplies, walking long distances and on rough terrain, frequent twisting, bending, stooping, reaching and grasping, sitting and/or standing for long periods of time, and ability to utilize ferry boat transportation to and from Mackinac Island. The employee will be required to wear a historic costume at all times while working indoors and outdoors in various weather conditions. This position will be exposed to extreme heat conditions working near an open hearth within historic buildings and outdoors around the site; individual must be able to work in this type of environment.

Dress Code:
The park maintains a dress code for employees in the public service to promote a productive and safe work environment and to maintain MSHP’s public image.  This means no inappropriate hairstyles, jewelry, clothing or fashion statements are allowed.  You are required to be in approved park costume at all times while on duty, which includes the wearing of proper footwear. The park will furnish the employee with the required costume items which must be returned at the end of seasonal employment.  Violation of the dress code may result in disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.

The employee works under the direction of the Colonial Michilimackinac lead interpreters and Curator of History. This position does not supervise other employees.

General Position Information:
This is a temporary seasonal at-will position which serves at the will of the employer and does not include recall rights or benefits (other than those mandated by governmental laws).  This position will expire at the time employment is ended for the season and the employee does not have recall rights to this or any other MSHP position in the future.  Specifically, the park is under no obligation to hire the individual in subsequent seasons.  The number of weeks and hours worked may vary as park needs dictate.   Additional information will be provided upon employment.

Due to the high volume of applications received, only those applicants invited to interview will be contacted.

Click here to fill out an application. 

Questions or cannot apply online?
Please contact:

P.O. Box 873
Mackinaw City, MI 49701
231-436-4100 x111

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