Working at Shambhala

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All Shambhala workers are called Crew

Shambhala volunteers and staff are the backbone of the festival and the driving force behind its success. Many thanks to the fantastic people who give their time and passion to make Shambhala a great place to be. If you are interested in joining our team, please read all the information on this page carefully before proceeding to the application.

Attention: Returning 2014 Crew

Invites to re-register for crew positions will be distributed via email beginning January 23rd, 2015. Please email hr@shambhalamusicfestival.com if you haven’t received an email from us by January 30th. If you proceed through the public application form via the link on this page, you will be asked for a deposit fee.

Benefits of being on the Crew

      • Free Admittance to festival (upon completion of scheduled shifts, your crew deposit is returned).
      • Arrive early and watch the festival come to life.
      • Great NEW location for Crew Camping – see “Camping” below.
      • One meal per 8.5 hr working shift, two meals per 12 hr working shift.
      • Sense of being a part of something special and playing a big part in everyone’s great time.
      • Memories to last a lifetime!

What are past crew members saying about working at Shambhala?

Being able to see the farm come to life and meeting all the remarkable people that make it happen is an amazing experience that keeps you coming back for more, year after year. (Trust me, this will be my third year, can’t get enough)
After 6 years I still get just as excited as a child on Christmas morning to come home to the farm those faithful August days.
Working at Shambhala Music Festival has helped me realize my dreams, meet my extended family and grow in ways I didn’t know possible. Giving back to the festival by being involved is a gift in itself. When you work here, you get to know that when someone has their Shambhamoment, you helped make it possible. It is the largest, most wonderful group of people I have ever had the honour of working with.
Enhance your sense of community and belonging by giving back to a place that gives so much to so many! Volunteering changed my festival experience.

Deposit

For all first-time crew members, there is a deposit of $350 as well as an additional non refundable $25 fee to be paid via paypal at the time of your application. Upon completion of the required number of hours we refund the $350 deposit. As a thank you, we waive both fees for all returning crew that are in good standing. If you don’t already have a PayPal account and want more info, please CLICK HERE. Sorry, we don’t accept deposits via mail. Be sure you have signed in and out for all of your shifts with your Supervisor! Once you complete all your shifts you must go to HR to sign off on your hours so we can return your deposit via paypal. Deposits will be refunded post-festival. Incomplete information will cause delays in your deposit being returned. If you are not eligible for a position, we will refund the total amount back to your account within 60 days of applying. IMPORTANT NOTE REGARDING CANCELLATIONS: We hope this won’t apply but if you do have to cancel PLEASE email human resources at hr@shambhalamusicfestival.com as soon as you can. The more notice you can give us, the better. We appreciate your consideration, since we’ll need to find someone else to take your place.  The fee of $25 is non-refundable.  Any cancellations made after July 13th are not eligible for a deposit refund, except in extenuating circumstances, and at the discretion of Shambhala. For those that cancel after this date, deposits are kept to cover administrative costs associated with last minute changes to hiring and scheduling.

Expectations

Camping:

Our crew are our most valuable resource, we understand the need for comfortable camp spots and quiet! A new crew camping area has been created along the river near the gate.  Shaded forest spots.  QUIET ZONE.  Private Beach.  Crew only showers.  THESE SPOTS ARE IDEAL FOR THOSE WORKING FULL TIME SHIFTS AND/OR AT NIGHT. Only crew will be allowed in this area and security will be checking wristbands. Starlight Lot on the river side of the road is once again available for crew camping, but does fill up quickly. THESE SPOTS ARE IN FULL SUN AND IDEAL FOR THOSE WORKING THE DAY SHIFT. The old crew camping up by Shambhalodging is now out of service. NO CREW ARE ALLOWED TO SET UP CAMPING ON THE MOUNTAIN SIDE OF THE ROAD. IF YOUR FRIENDS HAVE SET UP A SPOT YOU ARE WELCOME TO JOIN THEM 24 HOURS AFTER THE GATE HAS OPENED BUT CREW ARE NOT PERMITTED TO SAVE CAMPSITES FOR GUESTS. If you wish to camp with your vehicle, RV, or trailer, you are welcome to camp in the new crew camping area free of charge. If you wish to camp in the Starlight zone (on the left/river side of the road) with your RV, trailer etc you will need to purchase a Starlight parking decal (regular or oversize). There will be no crew RV’s or vehicles allowed anywhere else on the festival grounds.

Working:

It is imperative that you arrive to your shift well rested, on time, and sober.  You must be prepared for the work situation and the weather, wearing any personal protective equipment that is assigned to you. You are responsible for maintaining enough rest, food and water to complete all of your shifts.  You must work in a safe manner and abide by all worksafe regulations.  You must attend a safety orientation during your intake at the HR building onsite and a tailgate meeting at the beginning of each shift. Shambhala Music Festival is a 24 hour festival, there will be day and night shifts available.

Food:

Pack camp friendly food! Make sure you eat regularly, especially before the start of a shift. Arrive to work fed and caffeinated. It is very important to leave a positive impression on everyone we interact with throughout the festival and keeping yourself fueled helps! Remember: THERE IS NO POWER for refrigerators or hot-plates and campfires are banned (propane stoves at campsites are OK). Our Crew Kitchen is cafeteria style and for those working in remote locations we have a food truck that will deliver meals.  We feed workers one meal per 8 hour shift or two meals per 12 hour shift. Coffee will be served in the Kitchen at meal times. If you have allergies, sensitivities, additional needs or are just plain picky, we recommend that you plan to provide most meals for yourself. We can only accommodate standard meat or vegetarian meals, without variation and our kitchen cannot guarantee vegan or wheat/gluten free meals. You should start your shift with snacks and a full water bottle to take to your post. The farm is large and there won’t be enough time for you to go back to your camp, even when you’re on a break. If you have a “bottomless stomach”, make sure you plan for extra snacks and meals, i.e. power-bars, nuts, fruit leather, etc. Above all, please think ahead to make sure you have the nourishment your body needs while you’re on shift. Be prepared to provide meals for yourself before the vendors and ATMs are open on Wednesday August 4th.   Typically one food vendor is open on Tuesday August 3rd.

Clothing:

Whether it’s the scorching heat of mid-day or the to-the-bone chilliness at night and the wee hours of the morning, temperatures are known to wildly fluctuate and changes in weather can happen quickly. Pack for all types of outdoor conditions including warm water-proof shoes, winter clothing, extra socks, sunscreen, bug spray, rain gear and a good hat for sun or rain. Comfort is the key to staying happy and healthy on the farm. IMPORTANT NOTES – All crew must wear closed toe shoes at all times while on shift. All preshow crew must wear closed toe shoes whether on shift or not as the farm is a worksite. Dress in layers. The start of your shift might be much hotter or colder than the end of your shift. For more info on what to pack, check out Britz’s Guide to Festival Essentials.

Limitations

We cannot accept workers who:
      • Are under the age of 19
      • Are not legally allowed to work in Canada*
*Non-Canadian citizens who are in Canada with a valid Canadian work visa, or have permanent resident status may work with us. Documentation must be provided in these cases.  Some countries have a reciprocal agreement with Canada.  If you are between the ages of 18-35 please visit http://www.international.gc.ca/experience/intro_incoming-intro_entrant.aspx to see if your country of origin has an agreement with Canada and to determine if you are eligible to apply for a working holiday permit.  (Unfortnately the USA is not included on this list).  

Time Commitments

SHOWTIME CREW:

All positions scheduled during the festival between Monday Aug. 3rd and Wednesday Aug. 12th are considered “Showtime” positions. All Showtime work takes place on the Salmo River Ranch (festival site). Shambhala Music Festival runs 24hrs a day during public showtime and schedules reflect this. Volunteer shifts are broken down into morning, afternoon and overnight for shifts 8-9 hours in length, and day/night for those shifts 12 hours in length.

Showtime Volunteers:

We aim to create shift schedules which are fair, fun, and provide enough time off during the festival for you to get out there, enjoy yourself and do some dancing! For this reason we have established the following guidelines when creating volunteer schedules:
      • Most teams require a 34-hour time commitment of 4 x 8.5 hour shifts.
      • Medical Services, Harm Reduction, Fire and Parking crews have a 24 hour time commitment.
      • We stagger shifts so that they don’t all fall on the days that the stages are open.
      • Most shifts are as follows: Early Morning – 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Afternoon – 2 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., and Overnight – 10 p.m. to 6:30 a.m.
      • See Job List for available volunteer positions.

Showtime Staff:

      • Staff shifts are between 8 and 12 hours DAILY for the duration of the festival.
      • These positions are filled by seasoned, dedicated staff who come to the festival for the work experience and the satisfaction of working hard and enjoying the festival with their crew.
      • Wages are position-based.
      • See Job List for available staff positions.

PRE and POST SHOW CREW:

There are a few crews that work in the weeks leading up the the festival (July 13 – Aug 2). Please refer to the Job List for more info on which teams have preshow positions. These positions require a time commitment of 40 hours and you are fed 3 meals a day. For crew who are committed to returning the farm to it’s natural beauty, we also have a post show clean up team. When filling out the application please indicate if you are looking for pre/post show work but also let us know which showtime crew you would be interested in as we may not be able to fit you on a pre/post show crew. Preshow teams – Site, Kitchen, Reception, HR. Pre/Postshow teams – Environment Crew

Orientation and Training

All workers are required to attend our group orientation session on Tuesday, August 4th, 2015 at noon in the dining hall.  Crew will be notified by email regarding team specific training times. Some teams also have training sessions prior to arrival at the farm.

Arrival to the Farm

Please arrive onsite before 8am on Tuesday to give yourself ample time for check in; depending on arrival volume, it may take a few hours. We highly recommend that you arrive on Monday, August 3rd, 2015 (but NOT BEFORE 8 am) to set up your camp and settle in. Only people scheduled to work on Monday, August 3rd or earlier may arrive prior to this, and only within 24 hrs of your first shift. All crew must check-in at Reception upon arrival where you will receive your credentials. You will then proceed to HR to fill out your paperwork, receive safety orientation and confirm your schedule. IMPORTANT: Your friend/partner/hitchhiker-you-picked-up cannot come on-site before the gates open to the public if they are regular ticket holders. For safety reasons, only registered crew may arrive in advance of our gates opening to the public, no exceptions. We do not accept new volunteers at the gate.

Still have questions? Check out the CREW FAQ PAGE and the CREW/JOB LIST.

Apply Online

Ready to Join the Team?

If you can meet all our conditions and requirements above, we would love to have you with us for Shambhala 2015

Comments

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      January 19, 2015

      Yes, there are limited positions available for pre-show setup and post-show takedown. The conditions of these positions are a little different. If you check out the “PRE AND POST SHOW CREW” setup section above, it details a bit more of the specifics.

  1. Profile photo of carsok

    carsok

    February 3, 2015

    Hello? Would it be possible to work in the setup crew and then volunteer at the festival later?

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      February 4, 2015

      I unfortunately don’t have an exact answer for you in this regard. I would suggest contacting our HR department at hr@shambhalamusicfestival.com. They will likely have a few more questions in regards to finding the right position for you.

  2. Profile photo of Sheila

    Sheila

    February 6, 2015

    Hello! Just wondering if the crew camping area (where it’s been the past few years, “above” Sunshine Lot) will still be around? We camp with our vehicle. Thank you, Sheila

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      February 6, 2015

      Hi Sheila, due to our waste water treatment plant expansion we have needed to move our staff vehicle camping option. The new location will be with our new crew camping zone. If you sleep in your vehicle, it is allowed in the new camping zone.

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      February 10, 2015

      You are allowed to volunteer provided that you have a valid visa allowing you to work in Canada.

  3. Profile photo of sashab

    sashab

    February 9, 2015

    Hi there, I am just wondering what I should expect if I have applied for the work crew? can I apply for the volunteer crew at the same time in case I don’t make it on to the work crew? Thank you for your time:)

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      February 10, 2015

      Hey Sasha,

      There is no need to double register. Our HR crew will start interviewing registrants over the coming month or two. Once you have had a chance to talk with them, just mention that you might also be interested in volunteering, but your preference is to be on a paid crew. They will make note of your request and let you know of any options that might be available.

  4. Profile photo of Clarke

    Clarke

    February 11, 2015

    the FAQ sheet says that shifts are Aug 4 – 12…. does that mean we should set aside that whole time, or can we do our mandated shifts in the early part of the festival to depart on the 10th/11th?

    Also, what are the in/out privileges of the festival (to restock on food, if needed)?

    thx thx!

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      February 12, 2015

      Hey Clarke, thanks for the questions. Your shifts will depend on which team you are scheduled for, as well as where HR has the need. Scheduling is usually solidified sometime in June / July, so you will know your shifts before coming on-site. If you are applying for a paid staff position, you will likely want to set aside the whole time as staff generally work through the entire show.

      Understanding that our crew will likely be on-site for a longer period of time, we allow our crew to leave the site and come back without being subject to any re-entry fees, provided they are working during the show. If you finish your volunteer shifts before the show begins, HR will provide you with a physical ticket instead of a crew wristband and you will be subject to re-entry fees if you want to leave and come back.

      Hope this answers your questions, if you have any specific questions for your situation, you may want to email hr@shambhalamusicfestival.com

  5. Profile photo of ianmetz

    ianmetz

    March 4, 2015

    I’m a little sad I won’t be getting a hardcopy ticket to add to my collection since I’m volunteering this year. I’m guessing theres no way to buy one after the festival?

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      March 5, 2015

      Hey Ian, this is a request we do get a lot. This year, I’ll be sure to try to drop off any remaining blanks at HR after we close up the gate. Perhaps checking in on Monday afternoon or Tuesday after the show (if you’re still around). Sometimes we run really short on tickets as we usually don’t order too many more than what we sell. If there are leftovers, I’ll be sure to leave them there.

  6. Profile photo of Jaskaran nagra

    Jaskaran nagra

    March 18, 2015

    HI I am a paramedic and was thinking of volunteering after a coworker recommended it saying it’s a great experience. Just had a question, if I volunteer I get in for free but my friend said something about getting another ticket for a friend for free also if I work two 12 hour shifts as a medic? Is that still the case this year?

  7. Profile photo of Steve

    Steve

    March 18, 2015

    I was interested in volunteering for the medical volunteers, but might have to take the coach bus (on the Thursday) to get to the site. Is it mandatory to be there on the Tuesday or are there exceptions for certain crew teams? Thanks in advance for any help

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      March 20, 2015

      Hi Steve, you will need to arrange with your team manager if you are unable to make it on-site for orientation. Many teams have different rules surrounding orientation. Once your application has been approved, your team leader will reach out to you and you will have the opportunity to ask them your questions.

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      April 10, 2015

      Although there is no firm deadline, teams become unavailable as they are filled. If you want to have a better chance for getting on your desired team, you will need to apply earlier.

  8. Profile photo of Martin Olson

    Martin Olson

    April 10, 2015

    Hey, I was just wondering if there is a deadline for applying to be part of the crew. I just want to figure out my at-home job situation before applying.

    • Profile photo of Andy

      Andy

      April 10, 2015

      Hey Martin, our applications remain open as long as we have open positions, but our teams are starting to fill up. You likely have some time, but may not get a position on your desired team as they are filled.

  9. Profile photo of James Gillespie

    James Gillespie

    April 10, 2015

    Hey I’m a qualified carpenter with years of experience are there any pre show set up positions left?

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