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Festival seeks more help

Profile image for By Lucinda Breeding / Staff Writer
By Lucinda Breeding / Staff Writer

The Denton Festival Foundation hopes to recruit more enthusiastic Denton Arts & Jazz Festival fans to volunteer during the three-day event.

“We need about 700 volunteers to stage the festival every year,” said Carrell Ann Simmons, the longtime Top Hands chairwoman.

Top Hands are supporters of the foundation and the jazz fest. Active Top Hands support the festival with a yearly donation of $15 and at least one three-hour shift at one of the festival booths. Couples can join for $30 and businesses can join for $35.

“We’re doing really well getting volunteers for this year,” Simmons said. “There are lots of slots open from 3 to 9 p.m. on Sunday. We always have slots open on Sunday nights. People have to work the next day.”

The foundation prefers that volunteers register to join the Top Hands online by the close of business on Wednesday. But this is Denton, Simmons said, and there are always last-minute helpers.

“You’ll still be able to walk into the Woman’s Club Building on Friday, sign in and get your assignment,” she said.

Top Hands get a discount on the festival T-shirt, two free food and drink coupons and additional food and drink coupons for $3 each.

The real perk of Top Hand membership is a parking pass.

“That’s a pretty nice part of the package there,” Simmons said.

Top Hands work in one of three booths: the jazz fest souvenir and information booth, the festival food and soft drinks booth or the festival beer and wine booth.

“It’s a fun thing,” Simmons said. “It’s just fun, when everyone is hanging out in the park and having a good time. And you’re contributing to the festival and keeping it free. Collectively, with our dues, Top Hands give back $6,000 to the festival, and that’s how we keep admission to the festival free.”

LUCINDA BREEDING can be reached at 940-566-6877 and via Twitter @LBreedingDRC.