Name: Lisa Treutler
Committee: Artisan Market and Community Village (Coordinator)
Number of years volunteering: 3
What memory stands out most when you think of your time at the Festival?
It’s tough to pick just one, so here are two! During my first festival, I had an impromptu hooping lesson from a group of kids. I’d never played with a hoop before, but by the end I could keep it going. Those kids were skilled, and great teachers! I love how VFMF is truly a festival for all ages. This year, after discovering and falling in love with a band, I ended up running into them around the festival and we chatted about our countries’ respective political and election systems, which for me is a great example of the amazing random conversations that always happen throughout the weekend. I guess both of these examples represent discovering new things and learning from others – things that make life wonderful and rich!
Why do you volunteer for the Festival? What inspires you?
The whole festival is inspiring, but what makes the VFMF volunteer experience special to me is the dedication and positivity of all volunteers and staff. Here you find such a diverse group of people, united by a love of music, all coming together to help create the best weekend of the year. Every year I look forward to the Friday morning set up on site. Hearing sound checks really kick-starts the excitement. Seeing artisans, vendors, and others arrive and transform their areas into beautiful little communities with so much to offer festival-goers as they explore the site and make their way between concerts and workshops is amazing to watch. We start early, but every year the energy and initiative of fellow volunteers and VFMF staff to come together and solve any hurdles and be as helpful as possible, while having a fantastic time, is incredibly inspiring.
What’s your favourite part of the Festival?
Discovering new music and creating fantastic memories with friends old and new! Every year I end up hitting the CD tent more than once after hearing an amazing artist or band, and while sometimes these are artists I’ve “planned” to see (perhaps by reading their bios in the program or hearing through word-of- mouth), other times I discover them entirely by accident, just wandering by and being pulled in. It’s always exciting. Seeing friends who attend the festival and others who volunteer on different committees is another great part. I also love reuniting with my committee family; these are people I may not see all year but so look forward to spending time with at the festival. I can’t forget about all the other great conversations I have over the weekend, with people in lines, at mealtimes, waiting for shows to start, or at the Jenga table in the beer garden!
What advice would you give to new volunteers?
Expect to have one of the best weekends of your year – quite possibly THE best! Meet people, share new music discoveries, and explore all the festival has to offer. Don’t be afraid to join a committee you feel you may know little about. There are always experienced hands around to teach you and help you to become an expert, and you never know who could become a new close friend. Keep in mind that as a new volunteer, you have fresh ideas to bring that everyone could benefit from. Enjoy your shifts! Yes, you’re “working,” but you’re here to have fun while you’re doing it! When it comes to music, don’t just plan on the main stage in the evening, as the day workshops are some of the most memorable festival experiences. Oh, and bring lots of sunscreen!