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A Special Breed of People
By John Nowicki, Volunteer Advisor Committee
April 24, 2020 - Volunteers are a special breed of people. They don't seem to be just followers. Most of the volunteers I know need something more. They need to be involved, they need to be part of the process, but most of all they need to belong. Why, it's because that is who they are. They give of themselves because they want to, they can, and they believe in the cause. There is nothing better than going to an event and being able to actually see and feel the enthusiasm of the individuals assisting. It's an enthusiasm that quickly spreads. It happened to me more than 40 years ago and has not yet subsided.
There are not many things that bring so many people together. There are really only two that always top the list when this topic is discussed: music and aviation. Even auto racing can't top aviation events such as EAA AirVenture Oshkosh.
When putting together such an event, the volunteer becomes a large part of the complete package. If it would become necessary to hire out all the jobs and tasks handled by the volunteer, it would be difficult, if not impossible, to have the event. So, for those of you who don't know how much really goes into this event, even before the event happens, here is a short list:
- Grounds Preparation
- Landscaping, Painting, Construction, Fabrication, General Cleaning, Aircraft Maintenance
- Attendee Accommodation
- Campground Preparation
- Literature, Merchandise Prep, Passes and Credentials, Vendor Information, Maps, Apps
These are just a few. The list goes on and on, and that is only before the event. You still have during and even after — from parking aircraft, cars, and campers, to helping with admissions, information, and assistance, to full-scale cleanup and tear-down in preparation for next year.
So if you are a part of that special breed, and not just a spectator, give headquarters a call or stop by the Volunteer Center in Camp Scholler. The volunteer makes a difference.