Finding, care of, and feeding Volunteers

Each year at the annual BE-Pro conference for bike event professionals, participants would ask about how to find volunteers. This seemed to be a tough nut to crack particularly for new bicycle events.

Some events are run by bike clubs that have tons of people willing and able to help out before and during the event. Service clubs such as Rotary International or Kiwanis Clubs can generally call on numbers of people willing to put in the time for their charities. Smaller organizations or events have a tougher time finding the numbers of people they need to put on a quality event.

So, where and how to find these volunteers? Look locally.


Bike clubs and other service organizations, (maybe negotiate a reciprocal agreement: Your organization helps another group, they help you out at your event).


Many public and private schools in California have a volunteer requirement their students must fulfil before they graduate. Contact local high schools and colleges to find out if they have a program to match their students with events that need help.

Volunteer centers

Some communities have volunteer centers that serve as clearing houses for organizations looking for volunteers and people who want to help out.

Religious organizations

Many places of worship have volunteer programs—find out if you can pitch your event to the folks in charge!

Care and feeding of your volunteers

Show your appreciation!

  1. Offer a free entry to volunteers who won’t be working on the day of your event
  2. Offer a free meal/drink to those who are working on the day of your event
  3. Offer a donation to an organization that brings in volunteers to help
  4. Write a nice recommendation letter for the students who volunteer
  5. If you have schwag (event t-shirt, patch, beer glass, etc.), save some for the people who helped you create your successful event!