The success of Road to California relies much on the good will of our volunteers. We appreciate the many hours donated to the event with unpacking the show, tagging quilts for judging, assisting on the judging floor and in the photography room, hanging the quilts on the show floor, and of course, white glove duty. When the show is over, generous volunteers help with signing out staff, taking down the quilts and packing them for shipping back to their owners.
Affectionately referred to as Roadies, our volunteers come from all over the United States and abroad as well. This year, a French magazine editor will be volunteering on the judging floor to get a feel for how Road handles this enormous and important task. Quilters from Australia and England have also requested opportunities to help. A Road attendee from Canada has indicated she would like to white glove. When attendees arrive at Road, especially from a distance, they often want to fill “free” time by white gloving. There are many volunteers from throughout Southern California who come back year after year because they love being involved. Both men and women volunteer. Sometimes, a husband and wife will volunteer together. Or sometimes it is a mother introducing a daughter to something she has loved doing over the years. One woman from the Bay area meets her sister from the East Coast each year and they volunteer together.
Jan Huber is Road’s Volunteer Coordinator and has been sharing her duties with Joyce Bachelder for the past three years. Jan is a quilter and has herself volunteered in several capacities for Road over the years. She has also been a part of the Road Staff, coordinating the hanging of Special Exhibits. She enjoys chatting with volunteers who return year after year. Says Jan, “It is like catching up with old friends. I love being a part of the ‘Road’ family and being involved ‘behind the scene’ at my most favorite quilt show.”
During Road to California, Jan is really involved with her Roadies. As a coordinator, she checks in the volunteers prior to their shift time, informs them of their responsibilities, answers questions, and assigns them to the specific locations they will cover. At the end of their shift, she checks them back in and gives out any “perks” that they might have earned. Jan strives to “ensure that all the bases are covered and that volunteers have a positive experience and look forward to the next year, too.”
What are some of the “perks” Jan was referring to? All volunteers that have given 4 hours of service are recognized with a Road to California pin along with a “Roadie” bar. These bars are uniquely designed every year and can be added to their special pin. In addition, volunteers who work four hours also receive a multi-day admission to the show. Volunteers who work six hours get all the perks of a four hour helper and their choice of a Special Event or Lecture Ticket (subject to availability) or Priority On-Line Registration for the 2015 Class Sessions.
New for 2014, all prospective volunteers can register on-line. Simply log on with your account at http://online.roadtocalifornia.com, change Miscellaneous Items to Volunteer Opportunities, and drag your desired times into the calendar, then click REGISTER. Volunteers will get an email confirmation of the day/time they have selected. When Roadies arrive at the Volunteer Check-In Table, they can expect a friendly greeting and a positive experience. Road wants our volunteers to come back again and again.
Roadies must be 18 years of age (due to insurance reasons), be in good physical health, and be able to stand and/or walk for a two-hour shift.
Finally, Jan offers her perspective of volunteering at Road: “Volunteering is a great way to get up close and personal with exquisite quilts and is an opportunity to interact with other quilt lovers from all over. It is also a great way to share information with the viewing public. Plus, it is great fun to be a part of a major quilt show. Enthusiasm for quilting can be contagious!”
Share your enthusiasm for quilting…sign up on-line to be an official Road to California Roadie.