Hey Everybody!

One week from tonight the festival will be wrapping up and the credits will roll on the last film. Now I’m not saying this to get all melancholy on you, but rather to remind you of the fleeting wonder film fest week holds and to encourage you to embrace all that the festival has to offer — from its bounty of films that will inspire and challenge (nearly 200 of them!) and the opportunities to engage with new people (your fellow volunteers, neighbors, film fans, and filmmakers) to just the sheer energy of Downtown as the world, via both the transportive art of film and visitors, comes to Traverse City.

It’s a remarkable thing that we have created together thanks to all of your stalwart efforts, and I want you to hold on to that through whatever curveballs come our way. Cause if I know anything, it’s that we’ve got this.

That’s okay! If you have not had the chance to pick up your credentials and “Cinema Saves the World” volunteer exclusive tshirt yet, please visit us in the main festival office at 140 E. Front Street (2nd Floor of the Arcade building) from 10 am to 6 pm Monday; and from 8 am to 8 pm Tuesday through Sunday.

The MacGuffin, your annual pocket guide to volunteering at the festival, will be available at Monday’s volunteer screening as well as at venues when you report to your shifts. But if you want to read up now, you can get it online as well. Enjoy!

One of the many perks of being a TCFF volunteer is us treating you to a FREE movie, complete with popcorn and drinks! Tomorrow (Monday), July 29 at 6 pm at the The Kubrick at Central Grade, we’ll start things off with a brief orientation and pep talk, share our heartfelt thanks, fill you in on shifts that could really use your help, and giveaway tickets to select screenings. And then we’ll all watch “Picture Character,” a film that will delight young and old as we all learn about those wonderful little pictures in our phones – emojis! (This film is appropriate for tweens and up)

We’ve made it as easy as can be to get the training you need to master our BATA Festival Shuttle Loop. Just show up outside The Kubrick at Central Grade School tomorrow, Monday, July 29 at 5 pm, hop on a bus, and learn everything you need to know on a fun interactive training ride, returning in plenty of time for the movie.

Answer Squad is one of the coolest roles at the festival, where you get to ride an AIR CONDITIONED bus with wifi, meet lots of people, hear the reviews and buzz on the movies, and share advice about Traverse City and Northern Michigan.  Plus it’s ideal for people who want to be SEATED while on shift.

Thank you so much for reaching out to people and helping us to fill our manager shifts! While we can definitely always use more managerial assistance, we’ve got two absolutely essential roles to fill: Box Office & Line Manager at Central High School (Evenings). Let us know if you or someone you might know could fit the bill!

If you’ve got space in your schedule to sign up for an additional (mostly evening) shift, direct your volunteering energy to the following venues, if you please. We will also have volunteers standing by to sign you up for some of our most urgent needs at the Volunteer Screening!

  • Old Town Playhouse – So many fantastic and lively events! Such an awesome team!
  • Central High School – So luxurious!
  • Open Space – So magical
  • Answer Squad – So much sitting!
  • Party Security (Second Shift) – So many orange hats (that you get to keep)!
  • Kids Fest – So many happy kids!
  • Warehouse – So much activity!

Get a SWAG Buck to spend on some interesting prizes at the Volunteer Party on Monday, August 5 at 6 pm on the Lawn at the Grand Traverse Commons, for working a shift that meets any of the following criteria. There are also lots of specifically designated SWAG shifts when you login to sign up.

  • All shifts on SATURDAY, SUNDAY, and MONDAY (8/5) of the festival
  • Any shift that runs into the midnight hour on any day (namely, our Open Space Shifts)
  • Warehouse Volunteers receive DOUBLE SWAG BUCKS at any time they volunteer in our festival hub (it’s that critical to operations)

The annual Volunteers vs. Filmmakers softball game is back! Let’s show ’em that not only do we put on a fine film festival, we also put on a great softball game. Game time: 10 am, Saturday, August 3. Place: Civic Center. All are welcome. And a good time will be had by all! Bring gloves, bats, and balls if you have them (especially if you don’t want this to become a kick ball game!) Free team tshirt!

In summation, there is a lot going on in the upcoming days and it’s all gonna be awesome. If you’re missing any info, drop us a line or refer to the volunteering page.  And if you want to keep the party going after Monday’s volunteer screening, see the below for the coolest place to be.


Meg Weichman