You might be surprised to hear that the Stampede has more than 2,200 volunteers and 47 volunteer committees. It takes a lot of hands on deck to make an event of this magnitude happen and over the years, through their time, energy, dedication and community spirit, volunteers have helped the Stampede grow into the world-renowned show that it is today, 100 years after its debut.
I was lucky enough to chat with Janet Jessiman, a Stampede volunteer for over 15 years and ask her about her involvement in The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth!
1) What year did you become a Stampede volunteer and why did you decide to get involved?
It was 1997 officially with the Stampede, but my daughter was a marching band member from Round-Up to Stampede Band. I joined the Stampede Band as a chaperone and once my daughter, Samantha, was finished I joined the Promotion Committee.
2) What are some of your favorite Stampede memories?
My father was very involved with the Stampede so I grew up with it. Some of my favourite memories are going to kids day in the Grandstand; I was convinced every year I was going to win the grand prize to Disneyland, never happened but Buckshot always gave me hope.
One other memory that stands out was my dad was riding in the parade, of course my mom and our visitors waved and shouted when he went by but he totally ignored us. When we finally did meet up with him we found out that he was bucked off his horse at the beginning of the parade and rode the whole time with a concussion. The only thing he could remember was being confused if he should stop at the red lights or not. Thank goodness he came out of it ok.
3) What Stampede experience or event are you looking forward to the most this year?
Helping the communities celebrate the 100th year. Our committee is doing its best to be out and about and bringing the spirit with us.
4) What’s your favorite midway food?
An absolute just made fresh corn dog. I only get one a year so it better be perfect.
5) What’s your best advice for a fun Stampede?
Relax, enjoy the show, participate and let your hair down.
If you’re interested in lending your time and skills to the Stampede team, learn more on how to get involved here.