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Bass tourney looking for more helpers

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With the Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship coming up July 23-29, organizers are looking for more volunteers to sign up to help with this year’s event.

“We can always use more volunteers. There’s no shortage of things for volunteers to do,” Tara Albanese, director of volunteers for the FFCBC board, said this morning.

“We’re about halfway there [to our target number of volunteers]. We’re good, but we could be better,” she added. “The more volunteers we have, the less burnout there is—and the more fun volunteers can have.”

Albanese noted last year saw close to 600 volunteers. But even if 500 registered this year, she would be pleased.

Those interested in getting involved can do so by calling 274-0316, contacting Albanese via e-mail (volunteers@canadianbass.com), or logging on to www.canadianbass.com and filling out an on-line registration form.

Albanese said there’s a good deal of flexibility in being an FFCBC volunteer. The only thing asked of them is to donate at least four hours of their time either prior to, or especially during, the bass tourney.

“It doesn’t even have to be all at once. It could be two hours on a Saturday, another two on a Tuesday. They can even request what nights or days they want to work,” she noted.

But Albanese added many choose to volunteer for days or even weeks at a time. For example, all the FFCBC directors and team leaders are themselves volunteers who put in months and months of time.

Some die-hards also sign on year after year—and even spend their summer vacations volunteering at the FFCBC.

Helping out at the FFCBC also is a great way for high school students to work off those 40 volunteer hours they need to graduate. “They can get all their hours in a week,” Albanese remarked.

During the bass tourney, volunteers can do any number of tasks, ranging from selling “Bass Bucks” and doing boat checks to selling drink tickets, bartending, or clean-up.

Albanese noted that when people register to volunteer, they can specify certain areas they may want to work in. For instance, those skilled with computers may find their talents most useful in computer-related areas of the event.

Although the bass tourney doesn’t get underway for another month, Albanese said volunteers already are very busy, and even now there’s no shortage of things to do.

“We’re getting angler packages put together, we’re getting newsletters out, there’s site stuff to deal with. There’s things going on,” she stressed. “The tent goes up on the Thursday [July 20] and the on-site things start really happening.

“But before that, we need people to help put signs, help put up postings, get things out of storage, that sort of thing.”

While volunteering is its own reward, said Albanese, those who help out do get a FFCBC T-shirt, “Bass Bucks,” and have their names put in a recognition draw for a chance to win prizes.

While the FFCBC will accept volunteer registrations up to the last day of the tourney (July 29), Albanese said it’s preferred they sign up by Sunday, July 23.

This is because it makes it easier to determine a volunteer schedule for the rest of the week.

As such, those volunteers who do sign up by July 23 will get their names entered into a special pre-registration draw for another chance to win a prize, said Albanese.

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