EUGENE, Ore. -- Thousands of runners will take to the streets April 28-29; but to prevent mass chaos, hundreds of volunteers are needed to keep things organized and people safe.
The highlight of race weekend may be seeing runners cross the finish line, but there is so much more that goes into the Eugene Marathon and it couldn’t be done without volunteers.
“We need volunteers to do everything from greet people at the health and fitness expo on Friday and Saturday to handing out food bags and water bottles to runners as they finish the race, to help clean up afterwards,” says Denise Silfee, Eugene Marathon Volunteer Coordinator.
Silfee says there are many opportunities to volunteer leading up to the race and on race day.
“They also get a front row seat to the race. They get to watch everybody and we always encourage them to cheer people on as well,” Silfee said.
Some of the most important volunteers are course marshals, and there is a high need for them.
“Course marshals are our biggest need. We need around 200 on the course on race day. They are one of the most important volunteers because they keep runner safe, they make sure runners are going the right directions, and they make sure traffic stays off the course,” Silfee said.
The only requirement to be a course marshal is age, you must be 18 years old.
But younger volunteers, including local sports teams, can sign up to pass out water to thirsty runners or to cheer them on during the final miles. And in return the Eugene Marathon will help boost their programs.
“We love our volunteers. Like I said, we can’t do the marathon without our volunteers. So we want as many people to come out and be involved as possible. And we think it’s fun. We appreciate everybody that is there and, yea, we just love our volunteers,” Silfee said.
Volunteers should bring a rain coat, a cell phone for emergencies, and snacks in case you get hungry. The marathon will provide a bright green shirt so volunteers are easily spotted.
Click here to find out how you can volunteer.