We couldn’t do it without Course Marshals!
One of our most needed groups of volunteers is our Course Marshals: they never get to see the start OR of the finish of the race but we could not hold our race without them. Every race they work double duty: they keep our participants, spectators and motorists safe and they act as cheerleaders for every runner that passes them. Patricia has been volunteering as a Course Marshal along the Manitoba Full Marathon route for years and we are lucky to always be able to count on her support. It is Course Marshals like her that light up the race route and makes our big day so special.
When did you first start volunteering with Manitoba Marathon and what initially got you involved?
My first experience was through my work at Bell MTS. I handed drinks to the participants as they ran past the hospitality station. I had a blast! I was really impressed by the perseverance and positivity of the participants who thanked me for volunteering and for supporting their cause.
What job do you do on race day? What do you particularly enjoy about that position?
For the last few years, I’ve volunteered with my boyfriend and my son. We are Course Marshals at Cavell and Portage Avenue. We cheer for marathon participants and we stop vehicles as needed. We always have a great time!
What motivates you to stay involved?
It takes a few hours of effort, one day of the year. It’s a small price to pay to support a worthy cause. I know my presence makes a big difference because I can see it on the faces of the participants as I shower them with applause and cheers. I believe volunteers are special people because we care about people and causes. We show up and we give back to our community. It’s a privilege to be a part of the Manitoba Marathon volunteer team.
Do you have a great memory from a race day to share?
I love seeing people push themselves and I love seeing kids run. I know how incredible it feels to challenge and improve myself, and I love to encourage others who want to do the same.
What do you think is the most important skill that you have gained volunteering with the Marathon?
Teamwork. Teamwork. Teamwork. I feel very connected to other volunteers along the course. I can hear waves of cheers and it’s a wondering feeling to be part of this event.
What is the most important advice you could give to new volunteers with the Marathon?
Small effort; huge reward. Bring friends and family with you. Your smile and well wishes can make all the difference for the marathon participants. Positivity breeds positivity.
What are some of your other interests? What do you do professionally?
I’m a Facility and Administration Manager at Bell MTS. I oversee a contact centre with 600+ employees. My job is very demanding and my priorities change daily, sometimes hourly. My son and I are also Fan Ambassadors at Investors Group Field. We volunteer at the Bomber games and some concerts/events.
How has your volunteer work influenced other areas of your life?
I’ve learned that many events are successful at least in-part because of the work done by volunteers; often behind the scenes.