Volunteers promote safety

CALUMET – Since its organization in 2009, the top priority of the CopperDog has been safety – safety for the dogs, safety for the mushers, safety for the community and safety for the volunteers. Putting on an event like the CopperDog requires a small army of volunteers, and the CopperDog 150 and the CopperDog 80 can always use more volunteers.

There are literally hundreds of shifts and positions open and those interested in volunteering are welcome to register. Volunteering is not difficult and “working a shift or three is a lot of fun,” the website states.

For interested people who have never volunteered to work the CopperDog, an All Volunteer Training Session will take place from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. this Saturday, Feb. 20 at the Calumet High School.

Training will be hands-on and volunteers will have the opportunity to actually assist in the handling of a sled dog team. For anyone interested in volunteering for this position, the CopperDog board strongly suggests attending this training session, because the sled dogs are incredibly strong and require proper handling.

To see the volunteer schedule, go to the CopperDog 150 website (copperdog150.com) and go to the home section. Click on the volunteer section and from there, registration is as simple as providing a first and last name, telephone number, email address and password. Once registered, the volunteer schedule is available for viewing.

Each volunteer job has a minimum and maximum number of slots for volunteers to staff, the website states. The goal is to staff each job to at least the minimum stated number of volunteers. Many jobs can have more than the minimum number of volunteers, but CopperDog obviously prefers that volunteers staff jobs where people are needed (the minimum having not been met) rather than overstaffing jobs that have enough people.

CopperDog’s volunteer system is designed to be flexible, giving volunteers opportunity to easily registered friends and family in addition to themselves.

“Ultimately we have an event to run which will require us to begin locking down various jobs as the race weekend grows near,” the website states.” We need to make sure our bases are covered. Together, we will pull off one of the best-supported and safest events in the sport.”