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View Full Version : Why not? A question for those who do NOT volunteer...



FlightCheck
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:09 AM
For those of you who do NOT volunteer at an event where you are "only" riding one horse...why not?

I'm not talking about those who are coaching, or riding multiple horses, etc.

Background: This past weekend I had the wonderful experience of going to an event with JUST my own horse. No one to coach or help, just ME - a totally selfish experience ;)

I was fascinated by those riders who had "just" one horse, and moaned about all the waiting, but were content to just sit and wait.

So for those of you who don't, why? Do blanket announcements of "we need volunteers " not resonate with you? Are you worried that you do not have the skills necessary? Do you feel that, having paid your entry, you have given enough?


(for the record, I scribed for a vet for the **/* horses xc, scribed for dressage, fence judged, and was a ring steward - and still had MORE than enough time to enjoy and ride my own horse).

Xctrygirl
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:24 AM
Flight Check I adore you and good luck getting answers. I asked this over and over a while back and I was met with more excuses for why a person "didn't have time to volunteer" than any actual answers.

The fact is that most people have time, they just refuse to share it. It's more fun to sit with your friends and come off the adrenaline high effusing about yourself. What the ironic part is that if you and 1 friend jumped up together and fence judged, you'd likely learn more in an afternoon from your xc round and the 200+ you're watching, than from yours alone.

But people don't automatically get that. And I have seen a lot of selfish "All about me" folks jump into the event world of late.

I volunteer here and there when I can and I haven't competed since 2007. I ask others to consider doing it too, but the excuses come out so I just go and do, so at least I walk the walk.

~Emily

Auburn
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:26 AM
Flight Check,

Kudos!! :yes: I always try to volunteer at several events each year. I can usually fit in volunteering and riding at Hagyard Midsouth Team Challenge because of the way that it is set up.

Since, after what happened to me last summer, my DH is not going to let me ride in the hot summer events at the KHP, I will be able to volunteer at some of those. My favorite job is penny taker/water girl. :D

If you want to be in the running for year end awards, MSEDA requires volunteer hours. There are quite a few people who ask others for their extra hours, instead of volunteering themselves. They are missing out on a great opportunity to give back to our sport and get to meet some wonderful eventers.

However, I do not believe that I could do all that you did at your event and still have enough energy to ride. I am working on my fitness, but am not quite to your level, yet. :winkgrin:

bornfreenowexpensive
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:28 AM
It depends on the event and location. Most events that I have just one horse....there is no waiting around. You trailer in, walk the course (really run the course) do dressage, quickly change tack...maybe walk the part of the course you couldn't get to before dressage, jump, run xc, cool horse out and then trailer home (usually a couple of hours away). I prefer not to have my horse standing on the trailer for the rest of the day.

I have volunteered for the event very close to my home where I could trailer home and come back to help out at the event easily.

At events further from home--I'm usually working (bill paying kind of work) if I have a lot of down time or helping someone else. But it isn't hard to volunteer and I have and I do know many people who DO step up. I think those who have volunteered a lot before are more comfortable to step up as they know what the volunteering involves.

Highflyer
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:29 AM
Around here I rarely spend much time waiting! Usually I walk the courses, do my dressage test, walk the xc course again, watch a few stadiums, sj, and go xc.

I rarely spend more than 4 hours at an event if I am competing (plus 1-2 hours travel each way). There is a limit to how long my horse can be trusted to stand in the trailer by himself if we aren't moving--I am not sure I would be comfortable leaving him for 3-4+ hours even with hay and water.

Plus, realistically, I work on a farm. Just because it's a weekend, it doesn't mean the horses don't have to be fed, mucked, etc. If I am competing or volunteering, it means that my dad is stuck doing two people's work, which makes me really popular.

This is not to say I don't volunteer--I jump judged, stuffed packets, and did the year end awards points for MCTA last year--but it's not as easy as just sticking around at the event for the afternoon.

CiegoStar
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:32 AM
I volunteer more than I compete, so maybe I’m not your audience, but here’s my point of view on why I won’t volunteer while I’m competing. There are three main reasons.

1. I do not have the mental energy. I am a nervous shower and need to walk my course several times, make sure I am eating properly (I don’t) etc.

2. Most HTs around here require you to commit to a full or half day. Even “just riding one horse” it’s rare that I’m actually done in a half day. If I have 4 hours between dressage and jumping, maybe I would be fine with scribing for a bit, but it seems event secretaries/volunteer coordinators (who are often volunteers themselves) don’t want or need the hassle of having to piecemeal volunteer hours out of our ride times.

3. My horse, who works hard for me, comes first when I am competing. When I am done, I’m cleaning him up, poulticing and taking him home. I won’t leave him standing on a trailer while I volunteer. It’s a non-starter for me.

So that’s my POV. But I feel my karma is in balance because I volunteer easily 2x as much as I compete. :)

FlightCheck
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:39 AM
I was more referring to the 2 or 3 day shows...I understand if you trailer in/out, or do a 1 day :)

scubed
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:49 AM
I have had enough volunteer coordinators say that they can't use my help for 2 hours or that they can't give me a 15 minute break to check on my horse that I usually only volunteer if the announcemnts explicitly say "even if you can only help for an hour or two" or if I know the organizer/volunteer coordinator.

When I am volunteer coordinator, I get with the secretary early and offer riders who volunteer for a half day preferential rides times to the extent possible within divisions

FLeckenAwesome
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:55 AM
Good post!

I'll bite...

First.. I would love to, and should, volunteer more than I do. However... I have my "excuses". I work every other weekend... so that means I only have every other weekend to show. Granted I cannot afford that.. and wouldn't nec. anyways, but.. I also only have every other weekend available to do stuff such as lessons with my trainer that works a day job, XC schoolings, as well as fun hubby stuff, farm chores, etc. So... if I'm not showing, taking the weekend off to volunteer doesn't always work. But I do try to do my share. I think it'll be easier once the husbands schedule changes because right now.. we pretty much are only ever off together every other weekend.

As far as volunteering at shows.... Yes... I should. And I will make an effort to do it more. But.. I agree with Ceigo Star.. I don't have a groom, often don't have help, so... Fleck is relying on me.... If I volunteer I'm not hand walking him as much. And he's usually out 24/7 so stalling him at horse shows ... I like to walk him... a lot. Also.. I'm nervous, flustered and already feel like a chicken with my head cut off. BUT... I would love to volunteer after my rides are over and my horse is settled. I just hate to commit until the day of because what if I still have tack to clean, courses to walk.. and as it is... I tend to be the last one ready for dinner and bed anyways ;)

But... good point... I will make more of an effort! Thank you for the reminder....

And THANK YOU to the volunteers and organizers! I do always thank everyone :)

RegentLion
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:56 AM
Well last summer was my first summer back in the sport and my first time as an ADULT! :)

To be honest, and I'm embarrassed to admit this, I never even considered volunteering. I just ASSumed that things were generally taken care of... and if there were announcements otherwise I truly didn't hear them.

Thinking about it now, though, I would love to help out in some way, but my concerns would be these...

1. Having volunteered at other horse shows, (not events), the volunteers often get taken advantage of even to the detriment of their own rides (if they are riding a horse). I take a long time to get ready, to get "in the zone" and a long time fiddling around with prep. I'm a bit type A like that. So I would be worried that I would not have the time I need between volunteering and getting ready. This may really never happen, but I would worry!

2. Not having the skills necessary. I don't know that I know enough to jump judge (although I would LOVE to learn), but I could probably do other things.

3. My husband is there for me to entertain.. but maybe I could put him to work too!:D

So in short, if I knew that I would have the time to do the things I need to do to physically and mentally prepare for my ride, and had the skills, and had something for DH to do, then yeah, I"d volunteer. And you can bet that I'll be keeping my eyes and ears open for oppurtunities if I get to any events this summer!

LLDM
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:58 AM
I can't imagine trying to volunteer at an event where I am alone with my horse. Nor can I believe that people are moaning about to much time waiting? Really?

Whenever I've evented alone with my horse I've always been busier than a one armed wallpaper hanger! I have to be careful not to drink too much water, because I don't have time to pee. I can assure you I am not standing around complaining I have too much time on my hands.

I can only assume you are talking about longer events with stabling, not hauling in for the day and leaving your horse standing on the trailer whilst you do some useful job long enough to be useful?

When I do event, my number one priority is the comfort, proper preparation, and the careful coldown/clean up/put up of my horse. Next is to attend to myself to the extent that I can properly carry out priority number one and get her home safely and quickly so she can rest.

If it were a multiday event and she had a stall, there would be plenty of time. Then I would most certainly volunteer. But we don't have many of those any more. No one is happier to see a roving, ad hoc volunteer than the jump judges and scribes.

SCFarm

Janet
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:58 AM
I volunteer, OR I ride.

I don't do both at the same event.

When I am competing, I need to focus on me and my horse. If I try to volunteer as well, I do a lousy job of both volunteering and riding.

Between arriving, checking in, walking the course, grooming, tacking up, untacking, riding (including warming up and cooling off), and keeping myself hydrated etc., there is usually not more than an hour "block" for volunteering. I am also not comfortable leaving the horse unattended at the trailer for extended periods of time.

That being said, I often help with resetting the show jumping course if that happens during a time when I am free.

This all refers to "all phases in one day".

If the phases are spread over multiple days, I try to get the horse back home again as soon as possible after we finish a phase. (I have not stabled at an event since the early 90s)

If I have to wait around for final results to be posted, I will ask if there is anything I can do, but there rarely is at that point.

RegentLion
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:59 AM
Good post!
I don't have a groom, often don't have help, so... Fleck is relying on me.... If I volunteer I'm not hand walking him as much. And he's usually out 24/7 so stalling him at horse shows ... I like to walk him... a lot. Also.. I'm nervous, flustered and already feel like a chicken with my head cut off. BUT... I would love to volunteer after my rides are over and my horse is settled. I just hate to commit until the day of because what if I still have tack to clean, courses to walk.. and as it is... I tend to be the last one ready for dinner and bed anyways ;)


This pretty much sums up my days at an event... I just take a long time to do things! And I have lots that I DO even though it is more than others do. (Darn POny Clubber in me coming out). The only real difference between the quote above and me is that my horse isn't called "Fleck." ;)

Ajierene
Mar. 31, 2011, 09:59 AM
I was more referring to the 2 or 3 day shows...I understand if you trailer in/out, or do a 1 day :)

OK, that makes more sense. I was wondering how I could volunteer when, as far as I know, volunteering was at least a half day block and my wait time between dressage and jumping is usually about an hour, 2 hours max.

I will say that I have not volunteered much in the past mostly because I was either working or showing. I am planning to do some volunteering this summer since I am not planning to show much. I am volunteering at schooling trials that my friends are going to and will get free cross country schoolings from. Alternately, a place like Plantation that offers half day blocks is nice as well, since I am a busy person and do not have all day to stand around and watch people go over jumps.

Why only these places? Well, I volunteered somewhere last summer and was not given a radio because 'I did not need one'. I was jumping judging on cross country. Myself and the person with me were forgotten about for lunch and someone with a radio flagged down the person in charge. The lunch was eh and the day was VERY long. For over 9 hours of work, I got one free schooling (worth about $30). I can work (yes, I can work on the weekends) for 9 hours and get much more than that. Now that I think about it, I can work 4 hours, plus 2 hour round-trip commute and make more than twice that.

Maybe some other places would be better or some jobs better, but I was not impressed. I guess I am not vested enough in eventing or any eventing organization to really want to volunteer.

The organizations I volunteer with, I am vested in and give 100%.

I also agree with the people who say they focus at an event, rather than ride. When I go to an event, it is all me, my horse and our performance. I don't even invite my mother much because she tends to want me to 'entertain' her. My mare also does not drink when we are out so I like to spend as little time as possible at the show so I can get home and make sure she is alright. This is why I also have only done one-day shows with her. She may be fine in a stall, but I don't want to chance it.

pony grandma
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:01 AM
I agree with the piecemeal point about time. Also the orgs do NEED to know that the jobs are covered long before the event weekend. You can offer to relieve someone for a break or potty trip.

What I have repeatedly seen that goes hugely lacking is anyone sticking around at the end to help collect xc fence flags or help pick up the stadium fences to put back in storage. Esp stadium - it ends up being that core group of people who did all the work anyway. Even if you're busy packing your trailer send that friend/family member over who came with you. At the end of a long sleepless weekend and many months of work days and planning for the orgs - go help pick up the fences you got to jump. PSA :D

Catie79
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:07 AM
Call it an excuse if you want to, but I genuinely don't have the time when I'm competing. Yes, I have just one horse, but I travel with a barn. I'm an older, more experienced rider, so I find myself at the trailer helping my fellow riders get on and ready to go. I'm watering horses and refilling haynets and watching the wimpy ones that don't want to be alone. Then I have my own course walks and showing to do and a horse that seems to like to overheat. I can't just take off for four hours, that would be irresponsible for me in that situation, and I certainly don't want to make everyone else from my barn wait for me if I'm volunteering after everyone else is done riding. We're hitting the road at 5:30am in a lot of cases, and they have families and responsibilities back home.

I don't currently do multi-day shows, so I can't speak to that. If there was a stall and just one ride a day, then it would make sense. For people shipping in for one day? The idea of committing to volunteering on top of an already stressful day just turns my stomach. I wouldn't be able to handle it.

Bobthehorse
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:12 AM
Most of the events here are run on one day. Lower levels on saturday, higher levels on sunday. Sometimes all on one day. I generally have an hour or two between phases, and then when its over I cant wait to get on the road home. I really dont have time do volunteer during a show. If its a close show, and I show saturday, I often go back on sunday to volunteer. But if I show sunday, my saturdays tend to be busier than my show day, riding, bathing, course walking, tack cleaning, packing - cant swing that either, I rarely get home before 9pm anyway.

Even for a 3 day event, I never find I have as much time as I would need to commit to volunteering. Between course walking, hand walking, ride times, feeding, eating myself, I tend to find myself busy most of the day and worn out by the end. I volunteer when I can, but during a show I just cant handle it, I have enough on my mind.

I think its fair enough to expect competitors to give back to the sport, but I dont think its fair to expect them to work for the event while they are competing.

FlightCheck
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:16 AM
reiterating...TWO or THREE day shows, and not ship ins (or riders who are also grooming or coaching someone else).

Xctrygirl
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:26 AM
OK I am gonna ask the next logical question...


So if you CAN'T compete and volunteer simultaneously, do you volunteer at events when you're NOT competing???


~Emily

scubed
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:45 AM
yes ;)

RegentLion
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:46 AM
OK I am gonna ask the next logical question...


So if you CAN'T compete and volunteer simultaneously, do you volunteer at events when you're NOT competing???


~Emily

I would... if there were any events that I'm NOT competing at closer than 8 hours to me. Most of our drives last summer were 6hrs (once) and 8-12 hrs the rest of the time. I'd like to find a way to help out at events where I AM competing, because then I don't have to drive 8-12 hrs to volunteer.

deltawave
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:52 AM
Usually if I'm at a show with one horse, I'm helping out the group I have come with, but do sometimes volunteer if the scheduling works.

But I would much rather volunteer separately at a show where I'm not competing (and I do!) because show weekends for me are precious time to do my own thing, get into my own zone, and not have deadlines, commitments, or obligations. I know that is not a really great reason, and I have and will volunteer as needed, but don't seek out the opportunities like I could when I am competing.

If asked, however, I rarely say "no". Many events will put out a call for volunteers "on the day" and I try to make that work if I can. Having specific chunks of time designated is REALLY helpful. I realize this requires a lot of effort and organization on the part of show officials, but it does help.

wildlifer
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:58 AM
Well, some people must be superhuman and be able to access wormholes in space time! I don't have "staff" when I compete, it's generally just me. I don't get to just hop of the horse and hand it off to someone! And I spend all day walking my legs off as fast as I can just to get everything done and be everywhere on time. I sure as heck don't have time to watch people or volunteer at the same time. It is exhausting just getting through the day!

However, I DO volunteer when I am not competing whenever I can. I try to do several events a year at least and really enjoy each one.

bambam
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:01 AM
For those of you who do NOT volunteer at an event where you are "only" riding one horse...why not?
Because for a myriad of reasons (ranging from attending to my horse at the event to the fact just because it is the weekend does not mean I am not working and have free time) I choose not to. I prefer to volunteer (and do) at events where I am not competing. If I want to sit on my butt for a few minutes during a show where I am competing and enjoy the experience (although more often, I have about 5 minutes of down time total), then I am actually entitled to do that.
Granted, with the exception of AECs, I have only trailered in to shows even when they are over 2 days, but I think the important part is volunteering not that I am volunteering at the same show I am riding at (and apparently being judged for not doing it).

Janet
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:14 AM
OK I am gonna ask the next logical question...


So if you CAN'T compete and volunteer simultaneously, do you volunteer at events when you're NOT competing???


~Emily
Of course.

Brandy76
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:20 AM
QUOTE=Xctrygirl;5518246]OK I am gonna ask the next logical question...


So if you CAN'T compete and volunteer simultaneously, do you volunteer at events when you're NOT competing???


~Emily[/QUOTE]

I volunteered LOTS when I was competing "before". Not at ht's I competed at, but in between, and since I only competed lower levels, I often volunteered at the upper level events.

I still do it, though not as much. And, I feel guilty about it.

And I have all the reasons we all have - I work alot- with a one hour commute each way. Add that with about 50-55 hours work per week, and I am away from home about 65 hours a week. Weekends are to catch up on chores in the house and barn. And, maybe once in a while, read a book, work in the garden, etc.

And, I know it should not matter, but I have noticed that when I volunteered before compared to volunteering now - in all the years I volunteered before, the people were great. Now, I have had already a few experiences with competitiors that were, shall we say, not very nice. I found it surprising and it mad me a little sad. My impression in a few instances was that many people had a different view of the volunteers than those in the past. Of course, there are still MANY that love the volunteers, and let them know.

One young lady YELLED at me " I am 24! Why do I need my med card to sj??" "Besides, my trainer is here!":rolleyes:[

IronwoodFarm
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:40 AM
Our sport depends on volunteers in order to exist. If everyone gave at least one volunteer day at some level to eventing, we would have a surplus of volunteers. I wish we could have such a problem.

bambam
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:49 AM
But the question asked is not do you volunteer, it is do you volunteer at the same events in which you compete.
I am all for requiring volunteer hours actually and I find it troubling that a minority of riders/people are shouldering the majority of volunteering (I suspect the majority of eventers do not ever volunteer). How and when people volunteer is not as important, however, as whether they volunteer.

fooler
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:04 PM
When I first started in the sport, we were expected to volunteer. Especially when competing at our home event, in fact that is how I met Jimmy Wofford. The organizer sent me to scribe at SJ when my XC ride was done.;)

It doesn't hurt to walk into the office and let them know you have a 'window' of time to assist. Often they have volunteers that need to help someone else competing, need a knowledgable person to lean on for awhile or really need to leave but are honoring their volunteer committment. I sat with new XC judges for one division, then headed back to get ready for my XC ride - again this was a 2 day event.

Also 'back in the day' volunteers were only given a clipboard, xc sheets and pencils. We brought our own food, drink and seating (no cars allowed on course). And no we did not receive free schooling or stabling or anything. We were taught that our sport depended on volunteers to exist and no one was 'too busy" or "too important".

baxtersmom
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:27 PM
We are lucky around here that organizers and our local organization also often have opportunities for volunteering that may not be at a show - last year our barn re-painted the stadium jumps. We've also done equipment haul-out in spring etc. It's nice to be able to give back that way, too.

pony grandma
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:30 PM
I sat with new XC judges for one division, then headed back to get ready for my XC ride

This ^ is an excellent idea. Often times (mostly) we get non-competitors fence judging, many first timers and they are anxious if 'something happens' that they are not experienced to know. It would be hugely comforting for them and the orgs to have someone just sit with them for a short period of time!! All the little things, that's how green some of the helpers are and god bless them for just showing up - like when I was helping controller and the fence sheets come in with no name no fence #!! (That is a conversation that I have with the score runners!)

I am the xcountry vol org for IEA this year and we have to run xcountry for two days so we are pressed to have a LOT of volunteers to cover two days and they have the T,N3Ds running at the same time. I am certain that I will be educating many of the volunteers and 'any' help like this would be so appreciated!! Plus it would enhance the friendly reputation of the sport. Esp then the fence judge that you sat with will be rooting for you when you come around!

scubed
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:33 PM
Giving back any way is good. I think it interesting that people feel ULR should volunteer at events. To me, I think it totally counts that they are on USEA committees, donate their time to course walks, lessons to be auctioned off for various causes, training seminars at the lower level 3 Day events, etc. It all counts. Of course, some of our riders (I personally know of Hilda Donahue, Courtney Cooper, Jane Sleeper) ride at the upper levels and do actually volunteer at the events. So, anyone can figure out a way to help. Most events need help in the week or two leading up to an event as well as during and potentially the day or two after.

Big Spender
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:46 PM
OK I am gonna ask the next logical question...


So if you CAN'T compete and volunteer simultaneously, do you volunteer at events when you're NOT competing???


~Emily

And a legitimate question! Since I am no longer eventing, but doing dressage instead, I score for the day(s) at local recognized shows. I'll show one day and work another. Trust me, you will appreciate what you have as a competitor if you work behind the scenes, just once. In my case, I can only get the scores posted if I have good ring runners. If no one picks up the test, I can't score it...plain and simple. However, riders will continue to stand at the scoreboard, minutes after their ride and complain that the scores haven't been posted. :eek: Or, knowing the class isn't finished will ask if the ribbons are available?? Of course, as a Pony Club parent, you are required to volunteer for everything :yes:

lizanne
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:53 PM
This is a great post! And, funny enough, I was thinking about this on my drive home from an event last weekend. I think I volunteered a lot more when I was a kid, but it seems now, I haven't been able to put in the time. Most events are three hours away (is that a bad excuse, I'm not sure?) So on my drive home, I was wondering if I really would be able to do it while I had downtime at an event. This spring is a quiet one for me, I "only" have one horse going and am competing at three horse trials and then Jersey Fresh. After that I will be competing three horses for the rest of the year, so I would like to try and get my volunteering in while I can. I am going to the Fork next weekend (with my one horse) and would love to try and help out if they need me. But I haven't seen a post about it, maybe if I looked hard enough? Does anyone else know if they could use an extra scribe or jump judge, etc.? My pony will be going Intermediate, which might cause a bit of a problem with timing (but hopefully not :) ).

fooler
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:59 PM
This is a great post! And, funny enough, I was thinking about this on my drive home from an event last weekend. I think I volunteered a lot more when I was a kid, but it seems now, I haven't been able to put in the time. Most events are three hours away (is that a bad excuse, I'm not sure?) So on my drive home, I was wondering if I really would be able to do it while I had downtime at an event. This spring is a quiet one for me, I "only" have one horse going and am competing at three horse trials and then Jersey Fresh. After that I will be competing three horses for the rest of the year, so I would like to try and get my volunteering in while I can. I am going to the Fork next weekend (with my one horse) and would love to try and help out if they need me. But I haven't seen a post about it, maybe if I looked hard enough? Does anyone else know if they could use an extra scribe or jump judge, etc.? My pony will be going Intermediate, which might cause a bit of a problem with timing (but hopefully not :) ).

Great thinking!
Once you have your competition schedule figured out, check in with the FORK office. Let them know the times you are available and how to contact you. Sometimes they have plenty of help and sometimes they just need a "slot" filled. AND sometimes they "know' they are ok and then someone doesn't show:eek:. Then you end up as the hero:D

purplnurpl
Mar. 31, 2011, 01:05 PM
Usually for a 2 day HT one of the days has two events (such as, Dressage at 10am and Sj at 2pm) at which point the time frames don't work out.

Most of the time I'm helping my friends XC (because we go alone with no coach) and taking care of my horse.

When I'm not riding I volunteer. Actually I had the spot for the CIC scribe called in 3 weeks in advance for 2009 year's GW HT. I arrived 15 minutes ahead of time (as I was told) and they had given the job away to someone else and that they didn't need me--for anything--. I had gotten up at 3am to braid horses JUST so that I could scribe for the FEI tests.

And twice as a jump judge I was questioned. 1. by a coach who started screaming at me from 50 feet away, and 2nd from a BN rider whose horse totally peaced out at a ditch and she claimed he never stepped back.
:rolleyes:
Those experiences make me not want to do it again. I'm shy as it is.

I'll scribe again this year for sure if they don't tell me to go away.

asterix
Mar. 31, 2011, 01:10 PM
For the person who wasn't sure she had the skills and what would the DH do...
If you RIDE in events, trust me, you have the skills. And get your DH involved!

We run 3 rec events at the barn I board at, so it's very easy to volunteer. I do that any day I am not riding. DH has now run our SJ warmup at so many events that people recognize him at other events, and more than one ULR knows him by name.

Like many others, I do mostly one day events, and then, no, unless at my home barn, I don't volunteer on that day. Too hectic.

In addition to working our home events, I generally pick up a day or two at other events -- I used to do it a lot more, but now that I am married I find that mr. Asterix isn't crazy about me doing it every weekend during show season (imagine that!).

I think, though, that there are a large number of folks at all levels who never volunteer. I suspect there is real overlap between these folks and the people who are rude to volunteers.

I do secretly wish we could require volunteering, but I realize that is draconian. Shame on the people who take other people's hours so that they qualify for awards!

lizanne
Mar. 31, 2011, 01:17 PM
Great thinking!
Once you have your competition schedule figured out, check in with the FORK office. Let them know the times you are available and how to contact you. Sometimes they have plenty of help and sometimes they just need a "slot" filled. AND sometimes they "know' they are ok and then someone doesn't show:eek:. Then you end up as the hero:D

Will do! Luckily my mum has decided to come and she can help with the grazing and/or walking of my horse who finds staying in a stall stressful.

Eventcrazy
Mar. 31, 2011, 01:20 PM
At most events the ride times are not very allowing for extra time but should make a better effort.

I live six to eight hours away from any event if not more. So getting to an event where I'm not horse showing is probably not going to happen. Just don't have the extra time or $$$$ to do that!

Also don't think I could volunteer before I rode because of silly nerves!!!!

BIG THANKS to the people that do volunteer they ROCK!!!!

RAyers
Mar. 31, 2011, 01:29 PM
Like others, I prefer to volunteer at times and places where I am not riding. When I compete I like to be a student of the sport, spend time in the schooling area listening and watching rides/riders, I like to sit out on course or in the stands watching without the need to be concerned about papers, or who was where. When I ride I do better when that is my only focus. I can not "multi-task" with changes in my attention (jump judge, oh, gotta get ready...). I already take over an hour to get on for XC.

I do think there is a level issue too. At prelim and above, I like to get 2 or 3 course walks in the day I ride so if I am in the middle or end of the day, that limits my available time. I think at lower levels, this may change (we will see with the new guy).

When I do volunteer, I like to be only focused on that. I noticed that most of my volunteering goes on behind the scenes before and after so that does allow me to compete if it is a local show.

bornfreenowexpensive
Mar. 31, 2011, 01:35 PM
I would also say don't forget about the unrecognized events. I've probably done more volunteer hours at them. I LOVE watching all the cute kids on the ponies, green horses and new comers to our sport. Plus it is a great way to teach people about the sport and the rules and yet still keep it fun.

But I do think it is far easier to first volunteer when you are not competing...then it is easier to fill in when you are. I've done every job at an event at some point (including organizer). NONE of them are hard or take any real specialized knowledge. If you ride...and compete...you can do any of the jobs easily.

And some are actually FUN...I'll fight over a chance to ride the 4-wheeler to go pick up xc scores:lol:

Brandy76
Mar. 31, 2011, 02:00 PM
Or, for instance, last year I had to scratch at Olney. So I volunteered instead.

Love Olney, and plan to RIDE this year!

Ibex
Mar. 31, 2011, 02:23 PM
I can mentally/stress wise show OR volunteer. And yes, I do both! :)

FlightCheck
Mar. 31, 2011, 02:23 PM
Purplnurpl, you come find me at GW and I'll find you a GOOD volunteer job. Or you can sit with me in control.

SueCoo2
Mar. 31, 2011, 02:27 PM
All I've EVER done is volunteer, but I know one day when I do compete that it will be all good because I GAVE BACK!

I could probably enter Rolex with the # of hours I have, but its not about that, its about being there for those that love and participate in this sport and showing the people that donate their land, time and energies to allowing us to utilize their facilities that we APPRECIATE them!

Its is especially poignant in the situation we have here in Area V at Pine Hill with the loss of Phil Sawin. I'd hope we'd all rally around Ruth and help her keep things going at Pine Hill for however long she will need us.

yellowbritches
Mar. 31, 2011, 03:48 PM
Although, I may not be the type of person you are looking for answers from.

I very rarely volunteer. Usually, it is because I am either riding, grooming, helping, or all three. The times that I am not doing one or all of those things I really, really want to do something that does NOT involve the horse world. Because I eat, sleep, and breathe the horses, eventing and the barn, I get to a point where I REALLY need to spend time away from them. Sometimes it is just so I can catch up on necessary things like laundry, grocery shopping, sleeping, etc, sometimes it is because I want to go recreate in a non-horsey environment (ride a bike, go to a museum, travel, whatever).

When event season hits us here, we can go to an event or show every weekend without a weekend off (a lot of weekends, we're there both days, sometimes a large chunk of Friday is there, too) for weeks on end (ex: We went to our first show on the 19th, and will only have one weekend off- though we still may take Vernon to a hunter show that weekend- through May 22). The rare weekend off, even with the convenience of having lots of events close by, the last thought on my mind is "gee, I should go spend my weekend hot/cold/sunburnt/wet at the horse show." Usually, I am more like "Wow! A weekend off! Can I swing a visit to my sister?" Or "OMG!! I don't have to get up at 3am!" Or "Finally. The mountain of laundry can get done."

Does this make me a bad person? To some, probably. But to keep myself actually loving this job and sport and lifestyle I've chosen to live I've learned that at some point you have to have a good "life/horse balance". I want to stay in this sport, enjoy the horses, enjoy watching our clients grow as riders and competitors, and cheer on my friends for a long, long time. So, that sometimes means I need to let the sport take a backseat.

I will add that while I may not volunteer much, I strongly encourage ALL of our clients to go out and pitch in and most do.

purplnurpl
Mar. 31, 2011, 03:53 PM
Purplnurpl, you come find me at GW and I'll find you a GOOD volunteer job. Or you can sit with me in control.

HAHA!! sounds good! I'm pretty sure I won't be showing this year.
(I'm gonna try to wiggle my way into the judges stand for the FEI rides again though!)

subk
Mar. 31, 2011, 04:04 PM
Purplnurpl, you come find me at GW and I'll find you a GOOD volunteer job. Or you can sit with me in control.
HEY! I want to sit in Control with you. I'll keep your pencils sharp...or something! We can call it volunteering maybe.

bornfreenowexpensive
Mar. 31, 2011, 04:05 PM
Although, I may not be the type of person you are looking for answers from.

I very rarely volunteer. Usually, it is because I am either riding, grooming, helping, or all three. The times that I am not doing one or all of those things I really, really want to do something that does NOT involve the horse world. Because I eat, sleep, and breathe the horses, eventing and the barn, I get to a point where I REALLY need to spend time away from them. Sometimes it is just so I can catch up on necessary things like laundry, grocery shopping, sleeping, etc, sometimes it is because I want to go recreate in a non-horsey environment (ride a bike, go to a museum, travel, whatever).

When event season hits us here, we can go to an event or show every weekend without a weekend off (a lot of weekends, we're there both days, sometimes a large chunk of Friday is there, too) for weeks on end (ex: We went to our first show on the 19th, and will only have one weekend off- though we still may take Vernon to a hunter show that weekend- through May 22). The rare weekend off, even with the convenience of having lots of events close by, the last thought on my mind is "gee, I should go spend my weekend hot/cold/sunburnt/wet at the horse show." Usually, I am more like "Wow! A weekend off! Can I swing a visit to my sister?" Or "OMG!! I don't have to get up at 3am!" Or "Finally. The mountain of laundry can get done."

Does this make me a bad person? To some, probably. But to keep myself actually loving this job and sport and lifestyle I've chosen to live I've learned that at some point you have to have a good "life/horse balance". I want to stay in this sport, enjoy the horses, enjoy watching our clients grow as riders and competitors, and cheer on my friends for a long, long time. So, that sometimes means I need to let the sport take a backseat.

I will add that while I may not volunteer much, I strongly encourage ALL of our clients to go out and pitch in and most do.

While I understand your point....when I've worked 70 hour weeks for months, last thing I want to do is to spend my little bit a free time volunteering...I do. Not because I enjoy it....but because it is part of the sport. I see the same thing with others in the horse world....yes you need a balance...but unless we change the cost structure of these events...it is all our responsibility to give to the sport.

What you have to find is something you can do. There is help needed before and after events (there are many jobs that do not take place on the weekend or during the day--organizing some of the vendors, helping with the prizes, speaking with sponsors, Painting signs/jumps in the off season). Volunteer for events outside of your show season...that is why it often works better for me to volunteer at a starter trial. Or volunteer in other ways....sit on the board of your local combined eventing association.


Yes...it is hard to find time when you are busy....and no one expects you to rack up tons of volunteer hours. But the mindset must be....I will find 5-10 hours in the YEAR and give that back to the sport in some manner.

CANTEREOIN
Mar. 31, 2011, 04:24 PM
There are three main reasons.

1. I do not have the mental energy. I am a nervous shower and need to walk my course several times, make sure I am eating properly (I don’t) etc.

2. Most HTs around here require you to commit to a full or half day. Even “just riding one horse” it’s rare that I’m actually done in a half day. If I have 4 hours between dressage and jumping, maybe I would be fine with scribing for a bit, but it seems event secretaries/volunteer coordinators (who are often volunteers themselves) don’t want or need the hassle of having to piecemeal volunteer hours out of our ride times.

3. My horse, who works hard for me, comes first when I am competing. When I am done, I’m cleaning him up, poulticing and taking him home. I won’t leave him standing on a trailer while I volunteer. It’s a non-starter for me.


I make sure that I volunteer as often as I can at shows or days I'm not competing. And, last year was a crazy year for me... I felt guilty at not having time to volunteer so I sponsored... either ads in the program or donations.

I think there should be some volunteer requirement for year end awards... And, pros should be "encouraging" students to pay back through volunteering.

It's that important!

Kairoshorses
Mar. 31, 2011, 04:33 PM
I try to!

I have volunteered and ridden.

I have also been told I wasn't needed for the few hours I could give.

But sometimes I feel my time would be better spent helping a friend, so on those days, I devote myself to these folks.

And on the final day, I often have a 7-10 hour drive home, so I try to pack up and leave asap.

But I DO try.

BBowen
Mar. 31, 2011, 04:55 PM
FlightCheck, you know how much I volunteer now; however, when I was competing, I would tend to volunteer doing prep work prior to the event in which I was riding. Since I trailered in with a group, we always helped each other between phases and I had to be ready when the truck/trailer was ready to pull out.

I always worked at the show that I couldn't compete in. Maui Jim was a perfect example -- levels were way above my riding level, so I volunteered.

Since I am not competing at the moment, I give a ton of time on the board of our local GMO and our sponsored shows. And, from time to time, the Bowen Bed & Breakfast gets in the swing of things during show season. :-)

I will say that you see the same faces at the shows volunteering. We would be in a real pickle if these folks get burned out. At all the shows, we usually beg for volunteers and the tried and true group steps up to the plate. It would be great if more new and young competitors and their parents would volunteer. They could learn so much about the sport and the rules, and what it takes to put on the events.

enjoytheride
Mar. 31, 2011, 05:03 PM
I have volunteered and had a good time. What works best for me is say JJing prelim - training and then leaving when they have fewer fences and need fewer jump judges.

Year before I didn't volunteer at all because gas was so expensive. I didn't even go and watch friends compete if I wasn't riding myself.

slp2
Mar. 31, 2011, 05:09 PM
I DO volunteer--however not when I am competing. I tried to volunteer once when I was also riding--and it didn't work well. I ended up having to race back after my "shift" as x-c fence judge to get my horse ready for my ride. My horse didn't get any time to graze out of the stall that weekend because I didn't have a minute to get her out.

I usually go to shows alone and especially over a 1 day horse trial--I don't feel like I have an extra minute that I am not taking care of my horse, riding, walking a course, etc. We also have some events where there is no stabling--not that easy to leave your horse tied to the trailer while you go off to volunteer.

So, I *do* volunteer, but have found out that mixing it on a weekend that I compete isn't for me. I need to focus on my taking care of my horse when I am entered in an event. On a weekend that I'm not competing, I can be (and am) a much more effective volunteer.

NeverTime
Mar. 31, 2011, 05:28 PM
I am hesitant to commit to volunteering in advance for an event in which I am entered. I want to know when my ride times are and have an idea of what my weekend will look like, so I can make a volunteer commitment and stick to it.
Once I'm there, I'm usually pretty open to those announcements for volunteers (especially if it's an "away" event and I'm not trailering in and out immediately before/after my ride). In fact, I think the last time I was at Poplar (that's where you were this weekend, FlightCheck?) they announced a need for volunteers so I went out and XC judged the advanced Indian Burial Mound and watched horse and after horse slither over it. (I have to admit, it didn't exactly fill me with confidence for my own ride later in the day! :p)

:cool:And in a related PSA: Plantation still needs volunteers! :cool:
I am the volunteer coordinator for Plantation Field HT (trying to follow in the footsteps of the illustrious scubed, which is no small task!) and we are still looking for volunteers for the April 16-17 horse trials. You can volunteer for just half a day, or volunteer to come help set up before the weekend. If you are interested, please PM me or fill out a volunteer form online by clicking here (http://plantationfieldhorsetrials.com/volunteer/). Thank you very, very much!

Festivity
Mar. 31, 2011, 06:04 PM
I have ridden and helped at the same event, granted it was a 3 day event at Woodside and I hauled in from close. For me volunteering while riding help because it kept me busy. I didn't have time to over think my rides or to get really nervous. I was instead doing something "productive" and the volunteer coordinator was great. I told her what division I was riding in and she work around my ride times before I even got them. I definitely plan on doing the same thing the next time I compete. And while I am not competing I find volunteering is a great way to stay in the mix and get my eventing fix. Not sure that I would regularly drive 3+ hours to volunteer if I am not competing, but I will definitely help out my local events as much as I can.

Blugal
Mar. 31, 2011, 06:20 PM
To answer yellowbritches & echo bornfree:

I have been a WS and have experienced the event-every-weekend and 4 hours of sleep most days syndrome. There isn't time to volunteer while you're at the event.

However my coach is a really good example of ways to volunteer:

-sit on the board of our provincial eventing association (meetings were mostly at events in the evenings)

-organize and attend work-parties at an event outside of show season (spring/fall) - we built & painted jumps & she also did some course-design of unrecognized levels

-teach a clinic with all proceeds going to an event (the money helped build a water complex)

-hold a mini-event (good intro for younger/inexperienced pairs) - added benefit to us because we had to get all the weeds out of the rings, show jumps painted, XC schooling area fixed up by an actual deadline!

CookiePony
Mar. 31, 2011, 10:49 PM
I've volunteered at events at which I have ridden and not ridden. Having done both, I now avoid riding and volunteering at the same events. I'm not the greatest multitasker. But I typically volunteer at 3-4 events per year, and do some committee work.

Really, I think volunteering is just not on people's radar screens. How to change the culture to encourage folks to sign up? I wish I knew.

faybe
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:00 PM
Really, I think volunteering is just not on people's radar screens. How to change the culture to encourage folks to sign up? I wish I knew.

Eventing as a kid in Louisiana, LMDCTA (the Louisiana Mississippi Dressage and Combined Training Association- now called, I believe, SEDA?) required volunteer hours to be eligible for year-end awards. They always did a big awards banquet and you got an awesome ribbon- you better believe that as a kid I was out there getting my volunteer hours in so I could be eligible for one of those ribbons! The number of hours was very reasonable (5 maybe, or 10? It could be done in one day)- perhaps if volunteer hours were required to be eligible for Area championships it would raise awareness. The USEA could easily put out a standardized volunteer form to be signed by the event organizer/volunteer coordinator for whom you volunteered and submitted with your Area championship entry form.

I believe with the LMDCTA you could pay a $25 penalty fee for not volunteering, so that could also be an option for people who simply don't have time or can't be bothered.

tarheelmd07
Apr. 1, 2011, 06:54 AM
While I understand your point....when I've worked 70 hour weeks for months, last thing I want to do is to spend my little bit a free time volunteering...I do. Not because I enjoy it....but because it is part of the sport. I see the same thing with others in the horse world....yes you need a balance...but unless we change the cost structure of these events...it is all our responsibility to give to the sport.

What you have to find is something you can do. There is help needed before and after events (there are many jobs that do not take place on the weekend or during the day--organizing some of the vendors, helping with the prizes, speaking with sponsors, Painting signs/jumps in the off season). Volunteer for events outside of your show season...that is why it often works better for me to volunteer at a starter trial. Or volunteer in other ways....sit on the board of your local combined eventing association.


Yes...it is hard to find time when you are busy....and no one expects you to rack up tons of volunteer hours. But the mindset must be....I will find 5-10 hours in the YEAR and give that back to the sport in some manner.

BFNE - I completely agree with you - If you can find enough time to compete, I feel it's your responsibility to find some block of time during the season to get out there and volunteer - even if you rarely have a weekend off, would rather be doing something non-horsey with your limited free time, etc.

I don't work in the horse industry - but I have a very demanding job (I'm in my last year of residency) and my time for both horses and non-horsey life is limited. I also have 2 horses going...but volunteering is important to me,not because it's always fun to sit out at a jump in the cold, in the rain, but it's because it's how our sport runs. Having been an event organizer in the past, it's amazing how many volunteers you need to pull off a successful event...and how it can be like pulling teeth to get folks out there to volunteer.

I do what I can with my limited time - I sit on the board of my local association, I make sure that I make time to jump judge a couple times of year, help with our starter events, etc. I guess I feel that if I can find the time to do it, most people could find the time...if they took the time to try. I almost wish some small block of volunteer time (4hr...a half day...something) was required for renewal of your USEA membership...think of it as "continuing education credits" or something...

gold2012
Apr. 1, 2011, 08:23 AM
Flight Check,

I love to volunteer, use to do it a TON back in our other area. Here, it doesn't seem like they ever need me. I offer. Does anyone know who you contact at RH to volunteer? I know there is a co-ordinator at the FHP....and I have gotten to do some fun stuff there....

Also, most of the people we bring offer to do at least one level of x/c jump judging...but even that seems to be mostly full here.

Anway, good post...

SonnysMom
Apr. 1, 2011, 08:29 AM
Ok I just got sucked in. I completed my volunteer form for Plantation for 4/17/11.
Actually I volunteered a few times last year and never competed. I hope to compete some this year but I do like to volunteer so will likely volunteer at a few events, ht's etc...

I got to volunteer at Radnor the last year they held it.

Sonoma City
Apr. 1, 2011, 08:32 AM
I am with the crowd who does not volunteer and ride at the same show. Usually it is just me and my horse, and if he's locked up in a stall all day I do my best to keep him out grazing as much as possible. It's tiring going to an event alone, both mentally and physically. I need the downtime when I am riding. I understand there are some people who can go like the energizer bunny for the entire day, but when I'm riding, I"m not one of them! Or at least I need the option to be able to sit down and breath!

I do volunteer when I am not competing though. In any given season, I generally show through USEA, USDF, and our local dressage organization. I make sure I volunteer at at least one show for every organization each year. If I have free weekends I'll circle back around, but generally it's one volunteer day per organization per year. I really enjoy volunteering though, especially in the more social positions like ring steward. It's nice to be able to give people one last "good luck" and smile before they head into the ring :)

And to whoever admitted to making a living off of showing and eventing and not being able to make time to volunteer even once a year to make those shows and events happen, well, there are some things better left unsaid ;) ...especially when your posts can be tracked back to you saying that the Area awards are misleading because they require volunteer hours to be eligible. When I was growing up, my barn required anyone who was showing to volunteer. We had two barn volunteer days per year and you could sign up for one/both with the group, or go do your own thing another day if you coudn't make them. I thought (and still think) that it was a great way to teach people, as part of a training program, that it's more about just the riding. Just a thought to bring back to your program to instill the importance of volunteering early!

FlightCheck
Apr. 1, 2011, 08:42 AM
gold2012,
contact Alice at Rocking Horse for volunteering!

yellowbritches
Apr. 1, 2011, 09:24 AM
And to whoever admitted to making a living off of showing and eventing and not being able to make time to volunteer even once a year to make those shows and events happen, well, there are some things better left unsaid ;) ...especially when your posts can be tracked back to you saying that the Area awards are misleading because they require volunteer hours to be eligible.
I have no problems with what I've said, both here and on that other thread and I am long past trying to remain anonymous. I only say what I don't mind biting me in the ass (and, just like you, a lot of things I think are better left unsaid ;)).

I think I made my feelings pretty clear in the other thread (although I do think you have twisted my thoughts around a little....however, its been awhile since I wrote any of that stuff, and I'm not as quick to go dredge stuff up to bolster my cause).

Anyway, I DO appreciate those who kindly reminded me of other ways I can volunteer (my disdain for the Area awards program is a good example of where I could help!). Sometimes it is hard to remember that there is way MORE to volunteering than just spending your weekend doing what can often feel like a thankless job (because, no matter how many of us DO appreciate the time people spend making the events run smoothly- just because I don't do it much doesn't mean I don't appreciate it- there are plenty of people who take the volunteers for granted or treat them like crap). Often times, especially here, it seems like if you aren't sitting by a fence or in a hot car with a judge, you it isn't volunteering. I really do appreciate the reminders and will spend some time looking into other things I can do.

And, to whoever said something about hosting mini-event type things, etc- that actually makes me feel even less like a heel!! We actually have some things in mind, including some things that we'll use the proceeds to go toward new show jumps for Morven Park.

Gilbo
Apr. 1, 2011, 09:30 AM
I volunteer ALL the time, so when I go to a horse show where it's just me and my horse, I relax. Just about every weekend from now until September/October is filled with horse shows that my horse is entered in or I volunteer to help at. I love to scribe and do it as much as I can. There is no way anyone could convince me to put in time when my horse is competing because I am the reason they are there. If something happens or comes up, I need to be able to react, not be sitting on xc, scribing, or timing stadium.

piaffeprincess98
Apr. 1, 2011, 09:37 AM
I am generally riding one day and working for the event photographer the next day. If it was allowed, I'd be happy to fence judge while also taking photos. I mean, my camera is aimed at the horse, so I guess I'd see if it had a refusal or not. That might fly at an unrecognized event, but I don't know if a recognized event would allow it.

As far as multiple day shows, I usually only go to two or three a year, and I like to use my extra time to just enjoy the event and maybe watch some other levels. If my dressage time was 8am, show jumping at 9am and then nothing until the next day, I might consider volunteering, but it hasn't happened yet.

yellowbritches
Apr. 1, 2011, 09:40 AM
If it was allowed, I'd be happy to fence judge while also taking photos. I mean, my camera is aimed at the horse, so I guess I'd see if it had a refusal or not. That might fly at an unrecognized event, but I don't know if a recognized event would allow it.
It would certainly make disputes over stops easier!!! "Let's review the tape!!" :lol:

piaffeprincess98
Apr. 1, 2011, 09:44 AM
It would certainly make disputes over stops easier!!! "Let's review the tape!!" :lol:

Exactly! I've never actually brought it up at a competition, maybe I will this year. I can just say, "If you're absolutely desperate, I can multitask or at least take over while a jump judge needs a bathroom break."

leilatigress
Apr. 1, 2011, 09:46 AM
I don't volunteer when DD is showing mostly because I'm show mom to her and whoever else from the barn is there. I do however volunteer at shows DD isn't at. I have crappy handwriting but I don't mind running and fetching and am handy with tools and can yell loud enough not to need a megaphone. I have loaned out my DH for scribing though as he has fantastic handwriting and the judges flirt with him shamelessly. ;) DD shows Dressage and I prefer to volunteer for eventing, I'm too chicken to do it but I love helping at them!

bornfreenowexpensive
Apr. 1, 2011, 10:00 AM
And, to whoever said something about hosting mini-event type things, etc- that actually makes me feel even less like a heel!! We actually have some things in mind, including some things that we'll use the proceeds to go toward new show jumps for Morven Park.


You shouldn't feel like a heel....lots of people need to be reminded that there are many ways to give back---and not all of them will be seen but are still just as important as the person who is at a show all day volunteering. So just because you don't see that Rolex rider jump judging doesn't mean they don't give a lot of their time to the sport in other ways.

I do think that it is vital to lead by example--and teach the right attitude to younger riders. So even if you don't have time to jump judge etc....you can make sure some of the kids at your farm DO;) It really is always just about making people think what can I do...not what can I get or what is owed me (because I paid an entry fee). And when you get to know the various jobs...it is even easier to swing by the office and ask if they need the scores picked up or spot a ring steward a few minutes so they can have a potty break;)

I do think that everyone who is serious in eventing should at one point either organize an event or work closely with an organizer. It does really change your perception and make you realize how lucky we are that there are people who are willing to do that job.....I did it once and I'm pretty sure you couldn't pay me large sums of money to do it again.

NeverTime
Apr. 1, 2011, 10:08 AM
Just a brief intermission to say a big THANK YOU to BFNE and SonnysMom and anyone else whose COTH name I don't know for so very kindly signing up to volunteer at Plantation later this month! You guys are da bomb! :D:):D:cool:

Noctis
Apr. 2, 2011, 01:30 PM
I almost always volunteer if I'm riding only one. At multi day shows. (which is about all we make it to at this point) Or even at schooling shows I always seem to end up scoring! Had a BALL helping a learner judge scribe at Poplar last weekend (Btw flightcheck...was that YOU in the car before me?!), ended up helping with some jump crew stuff, and pretty much wherever I am needed. Will say that I NEVER got a response back re: "officially" volunteering for Poplar, when I submitted (and emailed) over a month ahead of time, but figure I can be useful wherever I am :)