It's been a week now since I volunteered at the Calgary Marathon. As a runner, it was a pretty great experience. It's the first time I've volunteered and I have a greater appreciation for what makes a race go around now.
On Saturday, the day before the event, I volunteered for the package pickup.
I probably should've gone for the t-shirt pickup instead to have something a bit more active. Live and learn. It was still a fun experience. Ah, the excitement of picking up your race package.
AND the excitement of running a half marathon. (Soon. Very soon)
The volunteers are working hard to make sure runners have a great time on race day. We also want to make sure that you have everything you need. Many of us are runners (or walkers or joggers) as well and we love the excitement around the event. I don't have much to say about this experience other than it was a lot of fun and I enjoyed the runners I got to talk to.
Gah, I can't wait to run this again next year!
Anyway, race day, I volunteered at the finish line. First up was unpacking the medals.
Oh yeah, the finish line is in front of the grandstand at the Stampede. Yep, you finish in front of stands. With people. Last year? I finished my race (not the marathon) right in front of the marathon runner (in my defense, he had a head start). The cheering from the stands was pretty awesome.
But I digress.
Volunteering was a great experience and thanks to all of the runners who were absolutely awesome at the finish line. Ok, there were a handful who weren't very cooperative with the volunteers (no, really, there's a reason we're asking you to keep moving and keep the finish line area clear. It's ok, EVERYONE is waiting for someone else to finish. I asked all of them to move too!), but overall the runners were fantastic and I loved volunteering.
It's something I'll do again, maybe even next year.
At the end of the day, I had a nice bubble bath, a good book and a Negroni
If you're a runner, go and volunteer at an event. It's a fun experience and it gives back to the running community.
And if you're thinking about the Calgary Marathon (half marathon, 10K, 5K, Ultra Marathon), I don't think you can go wrong. It's a great event and there's a lot to do in the neighborhood when you're not running.