We asked a number of our long-time volunteers why they put in the time for the festival and they has some pretty amazing things to say. Keep reading to hear their stories of how volunteering has impacted their lives.
A friendly reminder that the 2017 volunteer application deadline is March 31st. Application information can be found below or on our volunteer page.
"Volunteering for Jazz Fest has become a very special annual tradition for me. It started as a family thing, with my entire family putting in shifts so we could go to as many live shows and performances together during the ten day festival. Now, over a decade later and with all of my work and travel abroad, volunteering for Jazz Fest has become my beacon home - calling me to get on a plane to get back to my roots, family and friends and enjoy the incredible experience that is summer in Saskatoon. And no better way to return to ToonTown than with the world class music and fellow volunteers that gather for the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival."
-John Early, author of Tales of the Modern Nomad
"Judy and I have been volunteering, in one way or another, at the SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival for about 15 years. There is no question that we have received far more than we have given. The opportunities to mix with people we might otherwise never have had a chance to meet, the smiles on the faces of music lovers, the outdoor music wonderland that we are able to be apart of, all contribute to a payoff that is hard to quantify, but is of great value to us."
-Brian Storey, Drift Sidewalk Cafe & Vista Lounge
"I have always felt that volunteering my time and energy is a very important way of giving back to my community. Without volunteers, a community could never flourish. I am an enthusiastic person by nature and so no matter what organization or charity I commit my time to, I always feel proud to be part of something good!
When my kids started playing music at different festivals around the province many years ago, I started to realize I could do more than just haul their gear! Since then I have had the pleasure of volunteering for Flatland Music Festival, Ness Creek Cultural and Recreational Society, Saskatoon Blues Society and most recently the SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival.
Volunteering has been a very enriching experience for me and when you get to groove to the music at the same time you are meeting so many wonderful people.... well, life just doesn't get much better than that!"
"The most important reasons I volunteer is to give back, say thanks and impart wisdom. I believe that our community becomes smaller and more intimate once people start giving and caring for others. I am ever so grateful for my life and all my blessings, but it wasn’t easy. I grew up with a hard working single mother and we didn’t have much growing up, but we were happy. To help us boys out, my mom reached out to Big Brothers and we were placed with a volunteer who quickly became a father figure to my brother and myself. It was through this that I was introduced to the idea of sacrificing your time in order to help out those in need.
As a board member of the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival, I am able to help out with what I believe is a very worthwhile cause - bringing music, education and people together as one. Through the board, I get to impart a little business wisdom, help make hard decisions and make sure our festival keeps getting better and better.
The festival is a great example of our Saskatoon community and offers diverse music that reaches out to everyone in some way and I am proud to be a part of it. I have found through volunteering and community service that you get back a lot more than you put in."
-Cary Bowman, LB Distillers
"I have volunteered for the Jazz festival for four years and have met so many incredible people along the way. From being a stage manager and emcee I've developed skills and made connections that have assisted me as a musician and a working professional.
The team is always positive and hard working, and everyone takes pride in what they do. The Jazz Festival is one of the most exciting times of the year in Saskatoon! I look forward to the 2017 festival!"
TARA STOBBE (and our 2017 poster girl!)
"I’ve been volunteering for the Jazz Festival for several years and the feeling you get when you volunteer is so unique. You donate your time to further the advancement of an organization, of a movement, of a festival … and in return you become part of a community of individuals all doing the same thing. You have fun! You learn! You collaborate! You laugh! The feeling you get when you donate your time is one of the best feelings in the world! It just feels SO good!
The community that is created every year is also very special. Today I coordinate the stage management and emcee team along with two of my greatest friends. Every year volunteering during the Jazz Festival I run into returning volunteers, new volunteers, returning fans, new fans, and so many others. We are all there celebrating jazz in its many forms during the best time of the year, and without even knowing it, we’ve become a community. Volunteering in Saskatchewan is just SO special!"
"I volunteer because I believe that valued community events like the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival could not survive and flourish without the dedicated assistance of volunteers."
If these folks haven't convinced you to volunteer then we'll give it one last effort! The community's support as been so important to growing our event that we simply cannot do it without you. Living in Saskatoon is pretty great and having a reason to enjoy the city, like the festival, makes it an even better place to be for our friends, families, and children. Let's come together and create something amazing!
Volunteer applications will be accepted until Friday, March 31st.