The following is a list of the major areas where we need volunteers for NTIF. We generally have openings in all areas, but remember that prime shifts fill up early and returning volunteers are assigned first. Some areas have restrictions on age, such as beverage service, and others may have physical requirements such as heaving lifting (setup & teardown) or standing for most of the shift. Please let us know on the volunteer form if you feel that you cannot perform specific tasks and we will do our best to accomodate you.
Volunteers in all areas must wear appropriate attire and be polite and courteous to the public at all times. Volunteers are especially reminded that they should be quiet around the stage areas and respect that people have paid to listen to the bands. We recognize that, when your shift is over you may want to have a drink or two. That is OK, as long as it is in moderation. We do reserve the right to ask a volunteer to leave the festival should there be any issues, including intoxication or loud behavior.
We also ask that you call us should you not be available to work during your assigned shift. We understand that things do come up at the last minute, but we still have a large number of spaces to staff. Call our office number, (214) 821-4173 at any time and leave us a message.
The all-important ticket sales and ticket takers. We will have three admissions gates. Ticket sales volunteers will need to take money, give the correct change, operate credit card machines (training will be provided) and answer simple questions regarding admissions. Ticket takers will check that all visitors have tickets, stamp wrists for re-entry, give directions to activities within the festival and assist in providing wheelchairs as needed. You will need to be able to stand for most of your shift.
All concessions are managed by the master concessionaire for Fair Park, however, we are allowed to staff and take the profits from a number of beer booths under their license. Volunteers are needed to staff these booths. You must be TABC certified (we pay for the training) and you must be 21 or over. Some knowledge of traditional beers is required, such as the difference between an Ale and a Lager, and how to pour a "Black and Tan" or a "Half and Half". You will need to be able to stand for most of your shift. Drinking while on duty at a beer pooth is strickly prohibited.
Under our contract with Fair Park we are required to sell food and beverage coupons rather than take cash at the concession stands. Coupon sellers will also provide information regarding the location of various points of interest. Coupons are one dollar each, so we do not deal in change. There will be one credit card machine per booth, and checks have special requirements that must be met. You will need to be able to stand for most of your shift.
Our culinary stage in the Wolf Building (previously called the Women's Museum) hosts some of the top local chefs demonstrating how to prepare and present traditional and not-so-traditional Irish dishes. Volunteers in this area will assist in the preparation, plating and serving of samples to an audience of about 100 people. They will also clean up afterwards and assist the chefs as needed. Volunteers in this area must have some training in food preparation and serving and will be expected to dress in professional kitchen attire. This would be a great opportunity for students enrolled in culinary schools.
The job description for Finance is kept very “hush-hush” simply because of the nature of the work done in that area. Suffice it to say that you help with counting money, making up tills and making deposits. Experience in banking or finance is a plus for this area. We reserve the right to conduct background checks on anyone volunteering for Finance.
Have you ever fed a small army of staff and musicians? Do you have catering experience? If so, volunteering in this area is for you. Mix with the not-so rich but certainly famous in the NTIF Hospitality room. Meals and drinks are served from breakfast to supper, and light snacks along the way.
The Information Booths are a key part of the festival for many visitors. Here is where they go to find the location of stages, rest rooms, lost and found. They inquire where bands are playing and even what bands they should go listen to. They also purchase programs, get copies of the site plan and the schedule for the day. Volunteers in the Information Booths should be friendly, knowledgable and willing to put up with being asked the same questions over and over! Great place for a family with teenagers to volunteer. You will need to be able to stand for most of your shift.
In our product sales booths we sell all of the festival logoed merchandise, both current year and past years. We sell T-Shirts, Caps, denim shirts, jackets and programs. We also provide information regarding the location of various points of interest. All items are even dollars, so we do not deal in change. There will be one credit card machine per booth, and checks have special requirements that must be met. There will be a laminated sheet with a copy of the festival map and points of interest clearly labeled. Prices for merchandise will be clearly marked. You will need to be able to stand for most of your shift.
The SCMA operates a large booth at the festival to promote upcoming activities, concerts, meetings etc. Volunteers will provide information on the association, encourage membership and assist with information on the various musicians and directions to locations within the festival.
Our animal rescue area has grown from a small corner of Urchin Street to its own dedicated building. Grand Place, adjacent to the Big Tex Circle will house about 30 or more rescue groups plus animal grooming, training, agility and wellness groups. We cater primerily to dogs of various breeds, but have a fair representation from cats, guinea pigs and even mice. We draw the line at wombats! If you like being around and working with animals then this could be the place for you. We need volunteers to assist in registration, move-in, cleanup(!), watering and assisting visitors to the area. Junior volunteers are welcome as long as they are accompanied by an adult at all times.
Almost anywhere you look around the festival, you will find various stage sets and other decorations which help to set the mood and make the place look far more interesting. This is the team that creates and sets up those decorations all over the festival. We have 3 major sections of need. First, we need people on Thursday and Friday before the festival to do last minute repair work, and to set up the decorations everywhere. This can be involve anything from painting, to cutting ribbon, to sorting banners, to tying things to trees. We are a lively group that generally had a good time, and gets a chance to see most of the festival locations before anyone else does. Second, we need people on Monday to help tear down the decorations properly store them for the following year. You can sign up for either of these groups with the normal volunteer sign up process. The third group is a more off-season and potentially long term group – people who are willing and interested in meeting at various times of the year to help create the backdrops and decorations (mostly painting – and we can use all levels of painters). If you are interested in helping aside from just the week of festival, please specify that willingness in the comments section of your volunteer application.
Setup starts very often on the Wednesday night before the festival and continues Thursday and Friday and occasionally early on Saturday. Volunteers will construct the stage decorations, hang signage, distribute tables and chairs and generally do whatever is needed to get things ready for opening time. If you can spare a day or two this is a great way to volunteer and then be free to enjoy the entire weekend of the festival.Some experience with a saw, happer and screwdriver are a plus. If you can bring some of your own tools that is a plus. However, make sure that all power saws and drills are electrically safe.
This is the local 'office' of the Festival management. It provides a place for them to hold brief meetings, and is the holding area for supplies that may be needed during the weekend (pens, duct tape, paper towels, etc.). During the Festival, it is also the area for lost and found items, and lost children (or lost parents). Coffee and snacks are provided for the staff during the one or two breaks that they take! This is a perfect area for parents with small children (limit two please!).
If you can drag yourself out of bed on Monday morning and have enough energy to help pack everything back in the various storage locations, then the teardown crew sure needs you help. One of the less glamorous jobs, but certainly a necessary one.
If you have experience in public speaking or just fancy yourself as the next host of the Oscars, then try out your skills as a Stage Manager. Duties include ensuring that musicians are backstage in time for their set (radio provided to contact our performer staff), water and ice is available, letting bands know when their set time is about to end (5 minute warning etc.), introducing and announcing bands, calling for additional applause at the end of the set. Volunteers will be required to make announcements from the stage so public speaking experience is a plus.
Our kids' area, known for many years as Urchin Street, is an educational, entertaining and fun area for kids of all ages. We provide various activities that change from year to year. Some of the crafts we have done are rock painting, paper folding and other paper crafts, making hand puppets, coloring pages, chalk art, and even making bird feeders. Anyone who likes working with kids or arts and crafts is welcome. We also welcome volunteers of younger ages than a number of other areas – although depending on the age, we may need an adult volunteer along with the child. We are a great area for a family to volunteer together. We reserve the right to conduct background checks on anyone volunteering for Urchin Street.
Vendors will check-in starting early on Friday and leave Sunday night. Volunteers are needed to assist with both activities. Upon arrival each vendor will be provided with their location, passes and additional information. Some may need assistance locating their booths, electrical outlets, additional tables and chairs etc.
To save on costs, our event equipment supplier drops all the tables and chairs that we need in one location. Our volunteer team then distributes them during setup on Thursday and Friday to the various locations. This includes all vendor booths, stages, food courts etc. We do utilize a number of flatbed golf carts to move the tables and chairs around, but there is still quite a bit of heavy lifting involved. You should also bring a pair of work gloves since all tables come with a fair number of old staples ready to do harm to unsuspecting hands!
As a service to all bands we operate a Performer Products booth where visitors may purchases CDs and other products. Over 4,000 CDs were sold at NTIF 2014, and we expect 2015 to break that record. All CDs are an even $16, so we do not deal in change. There will be two credit card machine per booth, and checks have special requirements that must be met. Knowledge of the bands, the latest CD and the type of music is a plus. You will need to be able to stand for most of your shift.
All volunteers arriving on site will register at the Volunteer Center. They receive their badge, shift assignments and instructions. Cup of coffee and donut are optional! Walk-up volunteers will be assigned areas based on need, and some will be reassigned due to no-shows or other circumstances.