I can’t explain how excited I am for Gasparilla Music Festival. It’s just over one month away! Maybe you really want to go but can’t afford tickets, or maybe you are interested in the behind the scenes of the event and just want to help out. Luckily you have that opportunity! We spoke with Gasparilla Music Festival’s Volunteer Coordinator and asked her a few questions about volunteering for the event.
What’s your name and how are you involved with GMF?
My name is Reagan Julian, GMF Board Member – Volunteer Coordinator. I became involved with GMF from the beginning when it was only a vision that 4 guys had! I was a dedicated volunteer and committee member on the PR committee ran by original board member, Jamie Zinober. She recruited me knowing my love for music and having an events background! We were a grass roots operation in 2011/2012 spreading the word around Tampa any chance we could. I was fortunate enough to join the board in 2013 (for GMF 2014) and lead the volunteer efforts for the weekend of the festival and throughout the year.
What will volunteers be doing before the festival (thursday/friday) and during (saturday/sunday)?
Thursday/Friday volunteers will get to see how the magic happens! Pre-fest setup that involves prepping vendor areas, hanging signs, prepping materials, etc. They will receive 1-day general admission ticket for their shift. Saturday/Sunday volunteers will be in the action stationed throughout the park volunteering at our box office, entrances, VIP area, Corporate tent entrances, and various other volunteer tasks to benefit the fest!
How do volunteers make GMF run smoothly?
The volunteers are a HUGE part of making the fest a success! We couldn’t run the show without them. Just as the board is made of all volunteers to organize the festival throughout the year, the 500 individuals that volunteer for the weekend of GMF (that attracts 10,000+ fest goers) keep us running with their positive vibes and willingness to volunteer! All the tasks above are key opportunities that make our music festival stand a part from others. In addition, we have our GMF Captains who are key volunteers that have dedicated their time to volunteering the full weekend by managing areas throughout the park; GMF Concierge team who are stationed throughout the park to help fest-goers with any questions or requests; and of course our awesome GMF Volunteers filling in the areas with man-power that helps us create the hospitable atmosphere we strive for!
Do you have any advice for volunteers?
Advice to volunteers…attend the orientation! Lots of information will be give out then. Come enjoy the festival before or after your shift reaping the benefits for volunteering!
Will volunteers be working alone?
Typically, volunteers are stationed in groups of 2-6 people.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
This is great way to meet people who are passionate about music and Tampa Bay. On the day of your volunteer shift you are gifted free entry to enjoy the music and festivities before or after volunteering! We want to make sure that volunteers know they are supporting a cause – music education! To thank them for showing their support for GMF and volunteering, we gift them a ticket that would otherwise benefit our philanthropy. It’s well worth it!!
I will also take this opportunity to highlight a program we started last year recruiting Tampa Bay area non-profits/501-c(3) organizations aligned with our mission of supporting music education, to volunteer at our beer tents. Groups are recruited to serve beer and collect tips! All tips collected during their volunteer shift are donated back to their organization. 2014 groups included Instruments of Change, Lakewood High School Jazz Band, and St. Pete College Music Program where the donations provided a scholarship!
How can people apply to be volunteers?
It’s easy! Follow the link and be sure to review all information before signing up! Plenty of spots available!
Any questions or requests can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org