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Crew Descriptions

With 60+ crews, our volunteers are responsible for running every aspect of the festival!

Crew Descriptions

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Performer Services

Help our artists, both behind the scenes and on the stage.

Artist Check-In (FULL)

The Artist Check-in crew greets performers upon arrival backstage to ensure they have all the supports needed to have a fantastic festival experience.

What we do:

  • Welcome performers and log arrivals on site
  • Serve as liaison between performers, Artistic staff, and other performer services crews
  • Provide information and answer any questions

What is required:

  • Extensive knowledge of the festival
  • Experience in artist management and/or festival production an asset
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong organizational ability and attention to detail
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival
Backstage Lockup

The Backstage Lockup crew secures the storage of performers’ instruments and personal items backstage. 

What we do:

  • Receive and store instruments and personal items at the festival site
  • Ensure all items are recorded and tagged correctly
  • Assist cargo/transportation crews with loading and unloading of artist equipment
  • Ensure security of items in storage

What is required:

  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong organizational ability and attention to detail
  • Physical strength and stamina
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival. 4 shifts, 4 hours each.
Cargo

The Cargo crew works out of the festival hotel. They accept and tag artists’ instruments and equipment upon arrival, transport gear to and from the site with cargo vehicles, and staff the hotel lockup area. It is difficult to fulfill the duties of this crew if you are camping at the festival.

What we do:

  • Receive and store instruments and performer gear at the hotel
  • Ensure all items are recorded and tagged correctly
  • Ensure 24-hour security of items in storage
  • Load and unload equipment into cargo/transportation vehicles
  • Transport equipment from hotel to site and back

What is required:

  • Valid driver’s license (class 4 an asset)
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong organizational ability and attention to detail
  • Physical strength and stamina
  • Crew members must be at least 21 years of age
  • Training: Festival Vehicle Safe Operation (online course, provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: volunteers work two 8-hour shifts between Thursday and Monday post-fest. Volunteers working hotel lockup may be required to work an overnight shift.
Daytime Stages

The Daytime Stages crew provides the technical support to set up artists on all of our 9 daytime stages. The commitment made by these volunteers is above average in terms of time, but the experience is worth it!

What we do:

  • Provide hospitality to artists
  • Prepare stage and backstage area for each performance (backline setup, patching, assisting artists with their gear)
  • Daily set up and teardown of stages

What is required:

  • Basic knowledge of stage and sound equipment
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong organizational ability and attention to detail
  • Physical strength and stamina
  • Availability: Stage set up on Wednesday evening, pre-festival; Friday through Sunday, approx. 9 hours daily
Green Room

The Green Room crew provides onsite hospitality for the Green Room, Blue Room, and Artist Lounge areas.

What we do:

  • Maintain a welcoming, relaxing space for performers
  • Provide food & beverage service
  • Provide other hospitality items to performers
  • Clean and maintain artist trailers and general space
  • Assist with performer needs

What is required:

  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Attention to detail
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Bartending skills are an asset
  • Second language other than English is an asset
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival, volunteers work 3-5 shifts of 3-8 hours
Green Room Access (FULL)

The Green Room Access crew ensures that only accredited performers and guests have access to the Green Room and Artists Lounge.

What we do:

  • Welcome artists and guests to Green Room and Artists Lounge areas
  • Ensure performers and guests have proper accreditation for these areas
  • Monitor capacity of Artists Lounge
  • Ensure safe vehicle access to Main Stage area

What is required:

  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Ability to be assertively polite
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Training: access training (3-hour course provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: crew may work three 5.5-hour shifts, or four 4-hour shifts
Hotel Hospitality

The Hotel Hospitality crew works out of the festival hotel, assisting all performers and guests of the festival in the city by providing both information and hospitality.

What we do:

  • Welcome performers and guests and assist with festival registration
  • Maintain refreshments for performer hospitality area
  • Provide information and answer questions

What is required:

  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Second language other than English is an asset
  • Availability: two 8-hour shifts or four 4-hour shifts; crew operates from Wednesday pre-festival to Monday post-fest.
Main Stage

The Main Stage crew is responsible for setting up and striking all sound equipment for the Main Stage performances and sound checks. The commitment made by these volunteers is above average in terms of time, but the experience is worth it!

What we do:

  • Main stage changeover team: load and unload gear, coil cables, move risers, assist touring crews
  • Tweener aid: assist with tweener performance set up and strike
  • Backline aid: drum setup, load and unload backline.
  • Patch aid: assist with patching of mics, DI’s and monitors

What is required:

  • Intermediate knowledge of stage/sound equipment and instruments
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Physical strength and stamina
  • Ability to work as a team under pressure
  • Availability: volunteers work 2 out of 4 days, up to 12 hours per shift (daytime sound checks scheduled as requested by performers)
Schleppers

Our Schlepper Crew is responsible for transporting instruments, supplies and passengers on the site with utility vehicles, trucks and vans.

What we do:

  • Pre and post-festival: deliver tables, chairs, and other production equipment around the site
  • During the festival: shuttle performers, instruments, performer supplies and stage equipment

What is required:

  • Valid driver’s licence and confidence operating large vehicles
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong problem-solving skills & the ability to work under pressure
  • Physical strength and endurance
  • Training: Festival Vehicle Safe Operation (online course, provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: crew separates into two teams: Pre-post (operates from Monday pre-festival to Tuesday post-fest) or Festival. 4 shifts are required; pre/post hours are longer, festival hours are shorter
Technical Service

The Technical Services crew ensures performers have the gear they need for each show, and keeps our stages running smoothly.

What we do:

  • Maintain, move and track backline inventory during the festival
  • Provide technical support for performers, audio engineers and stage crews
  • Repair instruments and sound equipment as needed
  • Assist with daytime stage strike at end of festival

What is required:

  • Basic knowledge of stage and sound equipment
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Organized and calm under pressure
  • Physical strength and endurance
  • Availability: Wednesday evening pre-festival, Friday through Sunday – 5 shifts, approximately 20 hours total
Transportation

Provides Transportation for performers to and from the airport and between the hotel and the festival site. It is difficult to fulfill the duties of this crew if you are camping at the festival.

What we do:

  • Greet arriving performers and guests at the airport and assist with luggage
  • Transport performers to and from the airport for arrivals and departures
  • Transport main stage performers to and from the festival site
  • Supervise and direct morning bus pickups at the hotel

What is required:

  • Valid driver’s licence and confidence operating a vehicle
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Excellent problem-solving skills and flexibility
  • Physical strength and endurance
  • Crew members must be at least 21 years of age
  • Training: Festival Vehicle Safe Operation (online course, provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: Crew operates Wednesday pre-festival to Monday post-fest. Most shifts 6-8 hours, 3-4 shifts required (some flexibility is required due to unforeseen travel issues)

Festival Production

Keep our site clean, our vehicles moving, our volunteers fed, and our festival running smoothly.

Access Road Traffic

Access Road Traffic is responsible for the safe passage and parking of all vehicles coming in and out of backstage areas including performer buses, delivery trucks & utility vehicles.

What we do:

  • Check accreditation before allowing access into restricted areas
  • Control flow of traffic on each road via two-way radios
  • Direct vehicles to appropriate parking areas and monitor drop off zones
  • Assist with directing emergency vehicles

What is required:

  • Assertive with strong communication skills
  • Able to stand and/or walk for five hours at a time
  • Training: Traffic Control Safety (3-hour course provided by the festival, recertification every 3 years)
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival, 4 shifts of 5 hours
Festival Campground Enviro

This crew spreads the word to “leave only your footprints” in the Festival Campground.  Volunteers help to keep the campground clean by interacting with campers and monitoring the waste depots.

What we do:

  • Engage with campers to distribute bags and ensure campsites are kept clean
  • Monitor waste depots
  • Keep washrooms and porta-potties stocked with toilet paper

What is required:

  • Able to lift and pull 40 lbs
  • Able to stand and/or walk for five hours at a time
  • Strong communication skills
  • Availability: four 5-hour shifts
La Cuisine

This fast-paced crew is given the task of preparing and serving meals and drinks to performers, guests and volunteers backstage, in the largest kitchen in Manitoba!

What we do:

  • Kitchen crews (the biggest part of the team): prep, cook and serve food; wash dishes
  • Boxed lunch crew (pre/post hours – FULL): prepare meals on Mon/Tues/Wed before the festival and Monday after the festival
  • Cold storage crew: accept deliveries from suppliers, organize refrigerator trucks and manage inventory, support kitchen crews (must be able to do heavy lifting)
  • Drink tent crew: prepare hot and cold drinks
  • Maître ‘D crew (FULL): manage the food line ensuring it moves efficiently
  • Striker crew (pre/post hours – FULL): set up and tear down the kitchen pre and post festival, inventory supplies
  • Take-out crew: pack meals for pick-up and delivery to volunteers during the festival, serve breakfast
  • Take-out prep crew: prepare all take-out meals

What is required:

  • Ability to stand for an extended time
  • Ability to work in fast-paced environment
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Volunteers must wear closed-toe shoes, sleeved shirt and a hat on shift
  • Food handling experience an asset
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival, most volunteers work four 4-hour shifts
Production (FULL)

The Production crew assists our production staff by distributing and organizing production supplies before and after the festival.

What we do:

  • Accept deliveries
  • Pack and unpack supplies into/from storage
  • Organize, inventory and distribute production supplies
  • Liaise between crews, other production-related crews, and production staff

What is required:

  • Organization skills in a fast-paced environment
  • Excellent problem-solving skills
  • Extensive knowledge of festival site
  • Ability to lift 50 pounds
  • Availability: 24-hour volunteer commitment – crew operates from Saturday pre-festival to Wednesday post-fest
Schleppers

Our Schlepper Crew is responsible for transporting instruments, supplies and passengers on the site with utility vehicles, trucks and vans.

What we do:

  • Pre and post-festival: deliver tables, chairs, and other production equipment around the site
  • During the festival: shuttle performers, instruments, performer supplies and stage equipment

What is required:

  • Valid driver’s licence and confidence operating a vehicle
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong problem-solving skills & the ability to work under pressure
  • Physical strength and endurance
  • Training: Festival Vehicle Safe Operation (online course, provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: crew separates into two teams: Pre-post (operates from Monday pre-festival to Tuesday post-fest) or Festival. 4 shifts are required; pre/post hours are longer, festival hours are shorter
Site Enviro

If you have a passion for the environment, this may be the opportunity for you. Our Site Enviro crew promotes environmental awareness and ensures the festival site remains clean.

What we do:

  • Educate patrons on proper disposal of waste
  • Remove full carts and/or bags of waste from site
  • Pick up and properly dispose of trash found throughout the site
  • Coordinate plate scraping and return after meals backstage
  • Ensure toilet paper is stocked in porta-potties and storage boxes

What is required:

  • Strong communication skills
  • Ability to lift and pull 40lbs
  • Ability to walk and/or stand for 4-5 hours
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival, three to four 4-5 hour shifts
Site Office (FULL)

The Site Office is the behind-the-scenes communication and production hub for the festival. Volunteers on this crew are typically festival veterans who know the ins and outs of festival operations. Problem solving is what they do!

What we do:

  • Answer phone calls, monitor radio communications and relay messages
  • Transport people, equipment and meals on a pre-booked and on-call basis
  • Provide supply and equipment support during the festival run

What is required:

  • Extensive knowledge of festival
  • Excellent problem-solving skills
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Training: Festival Vehicle Safe Operation (online course, provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: Wednesday to Sunday, four 4-hour shifts
Traffic

Directing 15,000 people in cars is an immense task. Our Traffic Crew takes great pride in being able to direct vehicles with skill, friendliness and efficiency. *Note: volunteers on this crew can purchase a Festival Camping pass at half price!

What we do:

  • Direct vehicles to appropriate parking areas, drop off zones, etc.
  • Control flow of traffic for smooth egress from the parking lots
  • Manage pedestrian crosswalk between the site and the festival campground

What is required:

  • Assertive with strong communication skills
  • Able to stand and/or walk for seven hours at a time
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Mandatory training: Traffic Control Safety (3-hour course provided by the Festival, recertification every 3 years)
  • Availability: two shifts during the festival and one pre/post shift (Tuesday/Wednesday prior or Monday post), three shifts of 7 hours

Wellness

Support our festival community by keeping our patrons safe, healthy and happy.

Community Wellness

This crew of mental health professionals provides on-site psychosocial/crisis intervention to all people at the Festival on an individual on-request basis or as a coordinated response to an event that has a larger impact on our community. A subset of this crew operates the Chill Zone, which is a safer space within the Festival Campground for those who may be feeling overwhelmed and need to decompress.

What we do:

  • Assess people for signs of psychosocial distress and offer aid
  • Participate in patrols and be available for mobile calls for service in both the Festival Site and the Festival Campground
  • Offer aid in the case of a major incident
  • Support folks using the Chill Zone
  • Provide harm reduction information and supplies

What is required:

  • Crisis intervention volunteers must possess some or all of the following certifications: ASIST, Psychological First Aid, CISD/CISM, Shea CASE Level 1, and/or group facilitation training
  • Chill Zone volunteers encompass a wider variety of training and experience, but in general have experience working in such areas as mental health, public health, harm reduction, or psychedelic therapy, for example.
  • Availability: all four days of the festival, two 10-hour shifts (some Festival Campground shifts are overnight)
Festival Campground Safety

The main role of this crew is to act as ambassadors to the 6,000 campers who come to stay in the Festival Campground. A good pair of walking shoes and a sense of humour is a must!

What we do:

  • Access teams: check accreditation at entrance points
  • Patrol teams: identify and resolve any incidents while on patrol
  • Support teams: radio operator, record-keeping, lost and found, information
  • Overnight Access teams: patrol fence lines when dark to deter trespassers
  • Pre-festival Access teams: access control

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work overnight in a ‘lively’ outdoor setting
  • Ability to stand and/or walk for 6 hours
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Mandatory training: Initial Access Training (3-hour course provided by the Festival), plus additional role-related training
  • Availability: the majority of crew works Wednesday through Sunday, three 7-hour shifts (each team works at least one overnight)
First Aid

This multidisciplinary crew, comprised of both medical professionals and skilled first aiders, provides first aid services to our patrons in both the Festival Campground and the Festival Site that allow patrons with minor injuries to remain at the festival.

What we do:

  • Provide first aid services at a Standard First Aid and HCP CPR level
  • Act as first responders until EMS arrives in more serious situations
  • Collaborate with Safety, Community Wellness and safer spaces as needed

What is required:

  • Licensed medical practitioner (physician, nurse, paramedic, paramedical practitioner), OR Standard First Aid and CPR-C (HCP CPR preferred)
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Availability: three 8-hour shifts during the festival (Festival Campground operates 24 hours)
Quiet Campground Safety

The Quiet Campground is a unique community within the festival, and this safety crew ensures that our quiet campers are well taken care of. We’re looking for folks who can be positive festival ambassadors and good problem solvers in this more remote setting.

What we do:

  • Monitor gate access, ensuring all campers have the appropriate wristbands
  • Patrol the campground daily by bicycle, ensuring regulations are being followed and assisting campers where possible
  • Monitor RV load-in Wednesday-Friday to ensure space is being well-used

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Ability to stand and/or walk for 4 hours
  • Availability: three or four shifts depending on length, Wednesday through Sunday overnight
Security Folk

This team of dedicated volunteers provides high-quality support to both the festival community and our Safety crews, responding to incidents that require a higher level of training, all in a folky manner. All members are licensed Security Guards and graduates of the festival’s internal Festival Security Program.

What we do:

  • Access Control
  • General Patrol
  • Identify and resolve any incidents
  • Lead, assist and support Safety volunteers as required

What is required:

  • The WFF Festival Security Program is an enhanced 160 plus-hour version of the Manitoba Security Guard Training course that prepares volunteers for security duties at special events such as ours.
  • Skills needed: customer service, problem solving, ability to remain calm and deal with tense situations, ability to work overnight and walk for 5 hours
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Availability: Wednesday through Sunday, ~24 hours total (shifts vary)
Site Safety

This is one of our largest crews that patrols the festival site, maintains crowd safety and enforces our Participant Responsibilities. You are an ambassador for the festival, so think public relations in everything you do!

What we do:

  • Access teams: check accreditation at entrance points
  • Gate teams: check accreditation and bags for restricted items
  • Support teams: radio operator, record keeping, information
  • Patrol teams: identify and resolve incidents while on patrol
  • Stage Protection teams: identify and resolve incidents in stage areas
  • Pre-festival Access teams (FULL): access control
  • Overnight Access teams (FULL): monitor gates when dark to deter trespassers

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Ability to stand and/or walk for 5 hours
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Mandatory training: Initial Access Training (3-hour course provided by the festival), plus additional role-related training

Availability: most teams work four 5-hour shifts, all four days of the festival

Tavern Safety

Keeping our tavern goers safe and happy while patrons whet their whistle is what this crew does! The crew is responsible both for patrolling and managing the entry points of our two public taverns.

What we do:

  • Check IDs and monitor capacity of the taverns
  • Prevent beverages from leaving the taverns
  • Assist intoxicated patrons and prevent potential safety incidents

What is required:

  • Customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work in a ‘lively’ environment
  • Ability to stand and/or walk for 5 hours
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Training: Smart Choices & Tavern Safety (online courses, provided by festival)

Availability: 4 days of the festival, crew works 3-4, 3-6 hour shifts

Finance Support

These crews keep the sales areas of the festival running with skill.

50/50 Raffle

Ever seen folks walking the festival site wearing bright green shirts, waving their arms and yelling “50/50!”? Aside from selling 50/50 tickets and collecting money, these crew members must have a commitment to fundraising for the festival.

What we do:

  • Sell required of allotment of 50/50 tickets
  • Account for tickets sold and cash collected
  • Be a resource in the field to attendees who may ask festival questions
  • Promote the 50/50 and the Winnipeg Folk Festival’s charitable status

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills and outgoing personality
  • Cash handling experience and comfort working with cash
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Ability to stand and walk for 5 hours

Availability: 4 shifts (one x 3 hours, three x 5 hours), all 4 days of the festival

Admin

Do you know your way around a calculator? Do you have extensive cash handling experience? Then this might be the crew for you!

What we do:

  • Prepare and verify floats and deposits
  • Support other crews handling cash

What is required:

  • Strong attention to detail
  • Extensive cash handling experience (bookkeeping experience an asset)
  • A criminal record check may be required (provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: four 4-5 hour shifts, all four days of the festival
Admin Support (FULL)

This is a very small crew dedicated to supporting our Finance team. Due to the specialized needs of this crew, it is unlikely that first-time volunteers will be chosen.

What we do:

  • Volunteer training
  • Cash management
  • Monitoring/auditing finance crew reconciliations

What is required:

  • Strong attention to detail
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Extensive cash handling experience (bookkeeping experience an asset)
  • A criminal record check may be required (provided by the Festival)
  • Availability: 16-20 hours during the festival (shifts and hours vary)
Festival Campground Box Office

*Note: this crew does NOT qualify for complimentary camping

These volunteers are the first smiling faces to welcome campers on Wednesday and to trade your ticket for the wristband that will give you access to the campground and festival all weekend.

What we do:

  • Bankers: prepare floats of cash and wristbands; prepare deposits
  • Cashiers: sell tickets and provide appropriate wristbands; account for all tickets sold, cash collected, and wristbands used
  • Wrist-banders: scan all tickets and provide appropriate wristband; account for all wristbands used

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Cash handling experience and comfort working with cash
  • Comfort using technology (scanners, tablets, computers, POS systems)
  • Availability: most volunteers work the campground load-in on Wednesday (usually an 8-hour shift), as well as two additional 4-hour shifts, Thursday and Friday (some shifts maybe Saturday or Sunday at the Main Gate Box Office)
Main Gate Box Office

These volunteers are the first smiling faces to welcome folk to the festival by selling tickets, exchanging tickets for wristbands, and solving related problems like, “I lost my tickets! What do I do?!”

What we do:

  • Bankers: prepare floats of cash and wristbands; prepare deposits
  • Cashiers: sell tickets and provide appropriate wristbands; account for all tickets sold, cash collected, and wristbands used
  • Wrist-banders: scan all tickets and provide appropriate wristband; account for all wristbands used

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Cash handling experience and comfort working with cash
  • Comfortable in a fast-paced environment
  • Comfort using technology (scanners, tablets, computers, POS systems)
  • Availability: three or four shifts, 4-5 hours, Thursday through Sunday
Quiet Campground Box Office

The Quiet Campground is a unique community within the festival, and this box office crew ensures that our quiet campers are well taken care of. We’re looking for folks who can be positive festival ambassadors and good problem solvers in this more remote setting.

What we do:

  • Scan all tickets and provide appropriate wristband
  • Account for all wristbands used
  • Monitor gate access, ensuring all campers have the appropriate wristbands

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Crew meeting includes Traffic Control Safety training in order to work around vehicles
  • Availability: three 6-hour shifts, Wednesday through Sunday
Tavern

(See also Tavern Admin and Tavern Safety)

The Tavern crew facilitates liquor sale and service on-site through our three taverns (Big Rock Tavern, Liquor Marts Tavern, and the Backstage Tavern).

What we do:

  • Bartenders: Serve alcohol in compliance with the Manitoba Liquor Control Act and Smart Choices certification
  • Inventory: Keep taverns stocked with kegs, cans, cups and ice
  • Set-up (FULL): set up and strike all taverns areas

 What is required:

  • Bartending/serving experience and Smart Choices certification is an asset
  • Strong customer service
  • Comfortable in a fast-paced environment
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Be able to lift 100 lbs. (Inventory crew only)
  • Training: Smart Choices (provided by the Festival if not already held)
  • Availability: four 3-5 hour shifts, all four days of the festival
Tavern Admin

Do you know your way around a calculator? Do you have extensive cash handling experience, AND enjoy a fast-paced environment like our Tavern? If you said yes to all these questions, consider our Tavern Admin crew!

What we do:    

  • Bankers & Admin: prepare floats of cash and wristbands; prepare deposits; support ticket sellers when required
  • Ticket Sellers: sell drink tickets in compliance with the Manitoba Liquor Control Act and Smart Choices certification; account for cash collected and tickets sold

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Cash handling experience and comfort working with cash
  • Comfortable in a fast-paced environment
  • Comfort using technology (computers, POS systems)
  • Smart Choices online certification is an asset
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Available for four 3-5 hour shifts, all four days of the festival

Campground Support

These crews foster two special communities within our community – the Festival and Quiet Campgrounds.

Community Wellness

This crew of mental health professionals provides on-site psychosocial/crisis intervention to all people at the Festival on an individual on-request basis or as a coordinated response to an event that has a larger impact on our community. A subset of this crew operates the Chill Zone, which is a safer space within the Festival Campground for those who may be feeling overwhelmed and need to decompress.

What we do:

  • Assess people for signs of psychosocial distress and offer aid
  • Participate in patrols and be available for mobile calls for service in both the Festival Site and the Festival Campground
  • Offer aid in the case of a major incident
  • Support folks using the Chill Zone
  • Provide harm reduction information and supplies

What is required:

  • Crisis intervention volunteers must possess some or all of the following certifications: ASIST, Psychological First Aid, CISD/CISM, Shea CASE Level 1, and/or group facilitation training
  • Chill Zone volunteers encompass a wider variety of training and experience, but in general have experience working in such areas as mental health, public health, harm reduction or psychedelic therapy, for example.
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival, two 10-hour shifts (some Festival Campground shifts are overnight)

Volunteers working inside the campground will be given a complimentary camping pass for the campground in which they are working.

Festival Campground Box Office

Note: this crew does NOT qualify for complimentary camping.

The Box Office volunteers are the first smiling faces to welcome campers on Wednesday and to trade your ticket for the wristband that will give you access to the campground and festival all weekend.

What we do:

  • Bankers: prepare floats of cash and wristbands; prepare deposits
  • Cashiers: sell tickets and provide appropriate wristbands; account for all tickets sold, cash collected, and wristbands used
  • Wrist-banders: scan all tickets and provide appropriate wristband; account for all wristbands used

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Cash handling experience and comfort working with cash
  • Comfort using tablets and POS systems
  • Availability: all volunteers work the campground load-in on Wednesday (usually a double shift), as well as two additional 4-hour shifts (one of which may be at the Main Gate Box Office), Wednesday through Sunday
Festival Campground Enviro

This crew spreads the word to “leave only your footprints” in the Festival Campground. Volunteers help to keep the campground clean by interacting with campers and monitoring the waste depots.

What we do:

  • Engage with campers to distribute bags and ensure campsites are kept clean
  • Monitor waste depots
  • Keep washrooms and porta-potties stocked with toilet paper

What is required:

  • Able to lift and pull 40 lbs
  • Able to stand and/or walk for five hours at a time
  • Strong communication skills
  • Availability: four 5-hour shifts

Volunteers working inside the campground will be given a complimentary camping pass for the campground in which they are working.

Festival Campground Safety

The main role of this crew is to act as ambassadors to the 6,000 campers who come to stay in the Festival Campground. A good pair of walking shoes and a sense of humour is a must!

What we do:

  • Access teams: check accreditation at entrance points
  • Patrol teams: identify and resolve any incidents while on patrol
  • Support teams: radio operator, record-keeping, lost and found, information
  • Overnight Access teams: patrol fence lines when dark to deter trespassers
  • Pre-festival Access teams: access control

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work overnight in a ‘lively’ outdoor setting
  • Ability to stand and/or walk for 6 hours
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Mandatory training: Initial Access Training (3-hour course provided by the Festival), plus additional role-related training
  • Availability: the majority of the crew works Wednesday through Sunday, three 7-hour shifts (each team works at least one overnight)

Volunteers working inside the campground will be given a complimentary camping pass for the campground in which they are working.

First Aid

This multidisciplinary crew, comprised of both medical professionals and skilled first aiders, provides first aid services to our patrons in both the Festival Campground and the Festival Site that allow patrons with minor injuries to remain at the festival.

What we do:

  • Provide first aid services at a Standard First Aid and HCP CPR level
  • Act as first responders until EMS arrives in more serious situations
  • Collaborate with Safety, Community Wellness and safer spaces as needed

What is required:

  • Licensed medical practitioner (physician, nurse, paramedic, paramedical practitioner), OR Standard First Aid and CPR-C (HCP CPR preferred)
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Availability: three 8-hour shifts during the festival (Festival Campground operates 24 hours)

Volunteers working inside the campground will be given a complimentary camping pass for the campground in which they are working.

Quiet Campground Box Office

The Quiet Campground is a unique community within the festival, and this box office crew ensures that our quiet campers are well taken care of. We’re looking for folks who can be positive festival ambassadors and good problem solvers in this more remote setting.

What we do:

  • Scan all tickets and provide appropriate wristband
  • Account for all wristbands used
  • Monitor gate access, ensuring all campers have the appropriate wristbands

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Crew meeting includes Traffic Control Safety training in order to work around vehicles
  • Availability: three 6-hour shifts, Wednesday through Sunday

Volunteers working inside the campground will be given a complimentary camping pass for the campground in which they are working.

Quiet Campground Safety

The Quiet Campground is a unique community within the festival, and this safety crew ensures that our quiet campers are well taken care of. We’re looking for folks who can be positive festival ambassadors and good problem solvers in this more remote setting.

What we do:

  • Monitor gate access, ensuring all campers have the appropriate wristbands
  • Patrol the campground daily by bicycle, ensuring regulations are being followed and assisting campers where possible
  • Monitor RV load-in Wednesday-Friday to ensure space is being well-used

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem solving skills
  • Ability to stand and/or walk for 4 hours
  • Crew meeting includes Traffic Control Safety training in order to work around vehicles
  • Availability: three or four shifts depending on length, Wednesday through Sunday overnight

Volunteers working inside the campground will be given a complimentary camping pass for the campground in which they are working.

Communications & Audience Support

Keeping our audience informed and up-to-date on all things Winnipeg Folk Festival.

ASL

This is a crew of specialists providing ASL interpretation for select performances.

What we do:

  • Advance preparation as needed (familiarize themselves with artist provided materials, as well as independent research)
  • ASL interpretation of performers

What is required:

  • Licensed ASL Interpreter
  • Experience with live music interpretation
  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Availability: generally, Friday through Sunday (hours vary according to programming)
Audience Feedback

The Audience Feedback crew administers the on-site survey to audience members to gain valuable feedback on how the festival is doing. Volunteers read the survey orally and record the responses on paper.

What we do:

  • Administer a set quota of surveys
  • Provide information and direct audience to appropriate services when requested

What is required:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Initiative and confidentiality
  • Availability: four 4-6 hour shifts, all four days of the festival
Audience Services

Audience Services is the main point of contact for all audience inquiries and is full of experienced folks who are there to offer friendly service to all festival patrons.

What we do:

  • Answer audience inquiries
  • Receive audience feedback and pass along regularly to crew leadership
  • Provide information and support for all accessibility services available on site
  • Sell program books
  • Operate the lost and found
  • Operate the phone charging service
  • Operate the bag check service

What is required:

  • Extensive festival experience
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Confidentiality
  • Some heavy lifting
  • Organizational skills (cash handling an asset)
  • Availability: four 4-hour shifts, all 4 days of the festival
Daytime Stage MC’s

This small crew is responsible for providing information and messaging to our audience and introducing workshops and performers. If you are outgoing and comfortable with a microphone, this might be your gig.

What we do:

  • Study artist and festival information in advance
  • Speak to audiences before and after daytime sets and deliver Folk Fest key messaging
  • Motivate and inspire the crowd

What is required:

  • Strong public speaking skills
  • Professionalism
  • Adaptability
  • Availability: three 7-hour shifts, Friday through Sunday
INFOasis

This crew provides information and hospitality services to volunteers, performers, and other guests backstage. Volunteers on this crew are typically festival veterans who know the ins and outs of festival operations.

What we do:

  • Provide general information to volunteers, performers, and other backstage guests
  • Operate the backstage phone charging station
  • Distribute programs to volunteers
  • Maintain hospitality supplies and spaces
  • Accept feedback/suggestions and pass along to staff

What is required:

  • Extensive festival experience
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Confidentiality
  • Organizational skills
  • Availability: four 4-hour shifts, all 4 days of the festival
Media

This crew is the main point of contact for all media outlets visiting the site. We’re looking for technology-friendly folks with festival experience and professionalism.

What we do:

  • Check-in media upon arrival
  • Fulfill media/artist interview requests
  • Communicate any and all photo/video/media restrictions of the day
  • Escort video cameras/reporters on site
  • Provide tours as requested

What is required:

  • Professionalism and confidentiality when working with both artists and media
  • Comfort with technology (i.e. Mac computer, basic Excel, Word and Outlook)
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Experience working with the media an asset
  • Availability: three-four 2-6 hour shifts, all 4 days of the festival
Photography (FULL)

Our Photography Crew volunteers all possess professional photography skills and a good general knowledge of the festival. It is their job to capture memorable moments to be used for promotional use and archival purposes.

What we do:

  • Photograph the festival according to required shot list
  • Sort and submit photos on time

What is required:

  • Professional photography experience
  • Using own personal photography equipment
  • Professionalism
  • Flexibility
  • Availability: schedule varies, based on a pre-assigned shot list and the eye of the photographer (Wednesday through Sunday)
Video Screens (FULL)

If you have experience shooting live video, this might be the crew for you. The Video Screens crew rotates between filming the main stage performances and projecting them on the screens each night.

What we do:

  • Operate cameras
  • Operate video switcher and direct the camera operators on what camera shots to take
  • Switch between live feed and other content as required

What is required:

  • Experience operating a video camera and switcher
  • Good communication skills via headset
  • Able to stand for 2 hours
  • Availability: eight 2-hour shifts during mainstage, all 4 days of the festival
Videography

The Videography crew is a highly skilled and professional crew that documents the festival in video form. The crew is responsible for filming full workshops, special projects, and general festival footage.

What we do:

  • Direct and film footage of the festival according to the required shot list
  • Edit and submit videos on time

What is required:

  • Professional videography experience
  • Using own personal camera equipment
  • Professionalism
  • Flexibility
  • Availability: schedule varies, based on a pre-assigned shot list and the eye of the videographer (Wednesday through Sunday)

Year-Round

These crews help out throughout the year with concerts, office tasks, marketing and MORE.

Archives (FULL)

The Archives crew is responsible for managing, digitizing, organizing, and cataloguing archive items of the Winnipeg Folk Festival.

What we do:

  • Catalogue and index archive items
  • Input information into databases
  • Develop and maintain digital resources, such as scanning, sorting and formatting
  • Assist staff with archive search requests

What is required:    

  • Proficient with computers, MS Office applications, and scanners
  • Experience handling negatives and photographs an asset
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail
  • Ability to work independently with little to no supervision

Availability: Currently, the crew is scheduled Wednesdays 3:30 – 5:30 PM, September through April.

All our year-round volunteers work a minimum of 40 hours to earn their festival pass. These positions have low turnover and we typically recruit internally for volunteers who have already put in some significant time volunteering at the festival itself.

Concert Series Hospitality (FULL)

These folks provide hospitality and catering services to performers at all our year-round concerts. This small crew works very independently and is made up of long-time volunteers.

What we do:

  • Shop for and prepare food, drinks, alcohol and other rider items
  • Set up/clean-up dressing room rider items at the venue
  • Be available for any performer needs before, during and after the show

What is required:

  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to work within a budget
  • Availability: evenings/weekends/late hours throughout the year at various event locations in the city of Winnipeg. Each volunteer works 8 shows

All our year-round volunteers work a minimum of 40 hours to earn their festival pass. These positions have low turnover and we typically recruit internally for volunteers who have already put in some significant time volunteering at the festival itself.

Hear All Year (FULL)

Be the face of the festival at all year-round events – provide frontline services at our concerts and any other special events that arise!

What we do:

  • Sell tickets at the box office
  • Take tickets at the door
  • Sell artist merchandise
  • Market festival events

What is required:

  • Strong festival ambassadors who can work independently
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Strong cash-handling skills, including comfort using digital POS systems
  • Ability to stand for 4-5 hours
  • Availability: a minimum of 10 events at various locations in the city of Winnipeg, usually late evenings and/or weekends.

All our year-round volunteers work a minimum of 40 hours to earn their festival pass. These positions have low turnover and we typically recruit internally for volunteers who have already put in some significant time volunteering at the festival itself.

Office

This crew operates year-round to support the administrative work of the festival office, with the pace quickening right before the festival!

What we do:

  • Assist patrons both in person and over the phone
  • Data entry and clean up
  • Administrative tasks as assigned (filing, photocopying, labelling, laminating, mailouts, etc.)
  • Organization of festival supplies
  • Office organization and clean up

What is required:

  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Proficient with computers and MS Office applications
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Professionalism and confidentiality

All our year-round volunteers work a minimum of 40 hours to earn their festival pass. These positions have low turnover and we typically recruit internally for volunteers who have already put in some significant time volunteering at the festival itself.

Posters (FULL)

Poster volunteers put up posters and deliver rack cards or brochures. These folks need to demonstrate a flair for promoting the festival!

What we do:

  • Put up posters and drop off rack cards along a prescribed route
  • Pass festival information on to shopkeepers
  • Track where posters and rack cards go annually

What is required:

  • Mobile – must be able to walk long distances and carry posters and rack cards
  • Personable – comfortable with talking to business owners and shop keepers
  • Punctual – must be able to complete work independently in the prescribed timeframe
  • Availability: hours can be flexible within May and June

All our year-round volunteers work a minimum of 40 hours to earn their festival pass. These positions have low turnover and we typically recruit internally for volunteers who have already put in some significant time volunteering at the festival itself.

Treehuggers (FULL)

These folks take care of our trees to ensure the health and longevity of our forests and the safety of our festivalgoers.

What we do:

  • Arborists: identify trees that need to be pruned/felled, remove ropes left behind by campers, work with a partner labourer
  • Labourer: haul pruned branches into piles for removal, assist arborist in pruning

What is required:

  • Manitoba Arborist Certification (arborists) OR landscaping experience (labourers)
  • Physical stamina, ability to lift and carry large loads
  • Must use personal protective equipment while working and follow safe work procedures
  • Availability: two set weekends per year, fall and spring

All our year-round volunteers work a minimum of 40 hours to earn their festival pass. These positions have low turnover and we typically recruit internally for volunteers who have already put in some significant time volunteering at the festival itself.

Program Support

These crews help support the special programs of the festival.

Apprentice Crew

Are you between the ages of 13 and 17, and looking for a way to get involved with Folk Fest? This is the crew for you! The Apprentice Crew is a training program that offers an opportunity for youth to become familiar with the festival through placement with a variety of crews. There’s no better way to get to know the festival than through the eyes of a volunteer!

NOTE: We get it – the plans of young folk can change unexpectedly and are not always under their own control. For this reason, the recruiting process for apprentices happens closer to the festival. We aim to confirm returning apprentices in the spring and have most new apprentices added to the crew by the end of May, although there will always be late additions right up until the festival.

What we do:

  • Participate in three different crews during the course of the festival
  • Learn the various facets of the festival from experienced volunteers on each crew
  • Contribute to making the festival a success!
  • Upon graduation as an apprentice (i.e. age 18), choose a crew to join based on your experiences and preferences

What is required:

  • Enthusiasm and a positive attitude
  • Flexibility
  • Self-motivation, including the ability to communicate directly with coordinators
  • Return a signed agreement (provided by the WFF) between the apprentice volunteer, their parent and/or guardian, and the WFF
  • Training: a crew meeting in early June, pass and schedule pick-up in late June/early July, and an on-site orientation on the Thursday of the festival
  • Availability: three shifts, Thursday-Sunday (hours vary depending on participating crew schedules)
Family Area

The volunteers in our Family Area facilitate games and crafts for our younger festival participants. It is the job of this crew to ensure that everyone in the Family Area has a safe and enjoyable experience.

What we do:

  • Facilitate all family area activities: crafts, face-painting, origami, field games, reading tent, sand pile, etc.
  • Maintain tidy activity spaces and manage inventory of supplies
  • Daily set up and tear down

What is required:

  • Experience working with children
  • Creativity, energy and patience!
  • Child Abuse Registry Check (provided by the festival at no charge)
  • Availability: two 8-hour shifts, Friday through Sunday
Guest For A Day (FULL)

The festival’s Guest for a Day program hosts community groups at the site and provides guided tours, meals, transportation and the support needed to ensure a positive festival experience. GFAD volunteers need considerable knowledge of the festival, good leadership skills and a desire to give something back to the community.

What we do:

  • Provide an orientation to community groups prior to the Festival
  • Offer guided tours of the Festival grounds as community groups arrive on site
  • Be available to community groups as needed, and be supportive of any needs participants might have

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Building a knowledge of the community groups you’re paired with
  • Disability awareness
  • Availability: 2 shifts (Friday and Sunday of the Festival) for 6-8 hours (varies depending on community group needs)
Hand-Made Village (FULL)

The Hand-Made Village Crew assists artisans with hospitality, set up and tear down, overnight storage, and providing coverage at booths when artisans need to step away. This is a very small crew with little turnover.

What we do:

  • Hospitality: serve beverages and snacks to artisans in their booths, provide relief and assistance to artisans if requested
  • Movers: assist artisans with set up, tear down, and overnight storage as needed

What is required:

  • Strong customer service skills
  • Ability to stand or walk for long periods of time
  • Ability to lift up to 40 lbs (movers)
  • Availability: all 4 days of the festival, shift number and length varies
Newcomer Crew (FULL)

The festival partners with organizations working with New Canadians to introduce them to the Winnipeg Folk Festival, offering both a Canadian summertime experience and work experience. The crew is comprised of support workers of the organizations we partner with who provide festival-based training and on-site support to their volunteers.

VIP (FULL)

Members of the Development Crew support the specific initiatives and events that the development department undertakes for the organization.

What we do – support events that include but are not limited to:

  • The Festival Lineup Launch
  • The VIP Opening Night Reception
  • Special donor events
  • Sponsorship activations
  • The Sunday night Wrap Party

What is required:

  • Commitment to fundraising for the Winnipeg Folk Festival
  • Strong customer service skills and outgoing personality
  • Event planning experience and strong organizational skills
  • Extensive festival experience
  • Professionalism
  • Physical stamina for event set-up and tear-down
  • Availability: three-five 5-8 hour shifts, Thursday through Sunday (and potentially year-round if required)

All our year-round volunteers work a minimum of 40 hours to earn their festival pass. These positions have low turnover and we typically recruit internally for volunteers who have already put in some significant time volunteering at the festival itself.

Young Performers Program (FULL)

This crew provides support and hospitality to the participants and the instructors of the Young Performers Program. YPP runs over three days, both in the city and at the Festival site.

What we do:

  • Set up, maintain, and tear down all program spaces
  • Prepare and serve beverages and snacks
  • Oversee participant registration
  • Assist participants and performers as needed

What is required:

  • Professionalism and decorum when working with artists
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong problem-solving skills and the ability to work independently
  • Experience working with youth
  • Valid Driver’s license (access to a vehicle an asset)
  • Availability: daytimes Wednesday and Thursday in the city, Friday at the festival

Ready to join the folk fest family and register today?

Do you need more information?
Contact the festival office by phone (204) 231-0096 or by email at volunteer@winnipegfolkfestival.ca.