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Mule Days volunteers are in short supply

January 10, 2012

The folks at Mule Days are looking for new volunteers to help out with arena events, like the popular Packer’s Scramble, shown here. File photo

The calendar says January, but for some local folks it is perpetually Memorial Day weekend and Mule Days. Those folks at the Mule Days office are looking for a few good men or women to volunteer with arena events for this year’s 42nd annual mule festival.
The Mule Days Committee and office have put the word out that volunteers are in short supply this year and extra hands are welcome. Kim Craft, executive director of Mule Days, said the local Saddle Club are unable to volunteer this year and so a gap of about 30 volunteers needs to be filled.
Volunteers are needed to help in the arena, specifically, Craft said. She said these volunteers will help contestants getting in and out of the arena to helping set up courses and other tracks.
“Having some horse knowledge is good,” Craft said but added that there are plenty of jobs for folks who are not comfortable with stock animals. And, of course, being a volunteer comes with its perks, like admission to arena events. Volunteers can sign up for specific shifts to accommodate schedules.
The new volunteers will be working side-by-side with Mule Days staples like the Sonkes. Craft explained that there are generations of volunteers that have contributed to the event, like the Sonkes of Bishop. Denton Sonke was a long-time event director and board member, now his son Dave Sonke and family have stepped up and taken over many responsibilities.
The Mule Days committee also contracts the work of high school cheerleaders to sell popcorn and snacks during the event.
“Its when a town becomes a team,” Craft said of volunteers.
Mule Days tickets go on sale Feb. 1.
For more information call the Mule Days office at (760) 872-4263, on the Internet at www.muledays.org or visit the friendly Mule Days folk at 1141 N. Main in Bishop.

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