TCFF runs on volunteers. We show #JustGreatMovies, but we couldn’t do it without the #JustGreatVolunteers who work hard to bring this festival to life and keep it running smoothly from opening credits to closing night. Volunteering is a great experience, and we think you would love every second of it. It only take a few minutes to sign up — mere moments to commit to an unforgettable experience. Here are 10 reasons why volunteering with TCFF will be one of the best decisions you ever make.
1. You’ll meet the family that you never knew you needed
Our volunteers work hard — but they work hard together. Everything is a team effort, and there is no denying that our volunteers are more than a team, they’re a family. You will be accepted with open arms by one of the kindest, most fun groups of people you will ever meet. They are the “family” that you never knew you needed in your life.
2. An EXCLUSIVE Volunteer Screening
In order to reward the efforts of our volunteers, we arrange a special screening of a favorite TCFF film just for them before they settle in for the week ahead, for FREE. This year, we are screening “The Perfect Bid” on Monday, July 30. We kick the evening off with some special guests who will get you pumped for the week ahead. Your volunteer credentials for this night of fun are your tickets!
3. You get some awesome SWAG
We want our volunteers to stand out in a crowd in more ways than one. That’s why you will get a shirt denoting your volunteer status. But that isn’t the best part.
Volunteers who sign up to work special, hard-to-fill festival shifts, like midnight shifts, shifts on Saturday or Sunday of the festival, or shifts in the warehouse, earn SWAG bucks. SWAG bucks work like tickets at an arcade, and at the Volunteer party, SWAG bucks can be “cashed in” and redeemed for awesome tiered prizes. Read more about our SWAG program here.
4. Gain some valuable leadership experience
Our volunteers run nearly every aspect of the festival and can be given some very high-level responsibilities. We count on them to take charge and be confident (Don’t worry, our training will have you ready to go by opening night). This experience will give you some incredible practice in management, and continue to build your confidence as a leader.
5. You get a behind-the-scenes look
Don’t you want to see what goes on behind the curtain of one of the top film festivals in the country? It takes a lot to put together such an incredible event, and seeing the inner works will give you even more of an appreciation for the magic of TCFF.
6. Access to the VIP Volunteer Party
Our volunteers are, undoubtedly, Very Important People. This festival could not run without them. So we throw a party just to thank them for how incredible they are. This party is for Volunteers ONLY, so it is an exclusive event you won’t want to miss!
7. Special tickets for select screenings
We know our volunteers wants to enjoy the festival as much as they work it. That’s why we set aside tickets for select screenings to help ensure that our volunteers get to experience some of the magic they are making. Tickets are handed out at the Volunteer Screening and during select flash periods at the box office (watch your email!).
8. Street Cred(entials)
Time to be official! A credential is a sign to the general public that you know what you’re doing. For some, it’s a bit of a power surge. For others, it’s a reassuring reminder that you’re a part of something bigger than yourself. For all, everyone it shows that you’re an important part of the coolest event in Traverse City. Wear your credentials with pride (just not while seeing movies at the festival in your volunteer tshirt!).
9. Build friendships that will last a lifetime
Some of our volunteers have been with us since the beginning. And others are volunteering for the very first time this year. Either way, the connections you will make with the other volunteers can last forever. You will make memories that you will never forget, and friends that you will reminisce with for years. It is the people, most of all, who will make you want to volunteer for years to come.
10. Give back to the community
There is nothing we love more than how much TCFF brings the community together. TCFF is a nonprofit organization, which is why we rely so heavily on our volunteers to help bring the festival to life. We bring an important cultural event to Northern Michigan that attracts thousands of vistors and showcase our incredible area to the entire world. And that’s not even to mention what you’re doing for the love and art of film!