Residents who may have procrastinated in signing up to volunteer for the 2006 Arctic Winter Games waited just a little too long.
The AWG hit the target of 2,700 volunteers Tuesday, one day earlier than the proposed cut-off date.
Organizers initially hoped to fill all the volunteer slots by January, as each volunteer must pass a background check, but were able to extend the deadline through today. Sign-up was officially closed Tuesday morning.
According to AWG General Manager Tim Dillon, the news speaks highly of the peninsula’s spirit of community service.
“It’s pretty amazing what the community has done,” Dillon said. “To get 2,700 volunteers for anything is a big thing.”
The next step in the process is to get each of the volunteers through the background check process, assign them to their respective events and get them trained.
Dillon encouraged those who may have wanted to volunteer to attend the Games and support the athletes. To take on more volunteers than necessary would mean some would be left with nothing to do, he said.
“What we want to try and do is make sure the people who signed up are fully engaged in the Games,” he said.
Volunteers receive a jacket, reversible vest, gloves and a mock turtleneck with the AWG logo for their participation, along with free admission to the events they work.
AWG volunteer manager Kathy Moore noted that volunteering is its own reward, though. This is a sentiment often echoed by organizers and volunteers alike.
“The community pride and the sense of volunteering is really a huge legacy for the Arctic Winter Games,” she said at a volunteer sign-up rally in November.
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