The People's United Bank Vermont City Marathon & Relay (PUBVCM) is supported by our 75-person Marathon Command (aka Race Committee) Team who oversee 1,700 volunteers managing nearly 2,000 tasks. Wow, that's a lot of volunteers and, yes, many volunteers take on multiple tasks and shifts. Most volunteers are local, range in age from 8 to 80+ and have been supporting this event for years and, in some cases, decades. Nearly half have volunteered at PUBVCM previously and over 100 have volunteered more than 10 times. However, for 600 volunteers this past May, it was their first time. It’s this race’s secret ingredient and one of the main reasons runners come from practically every US state to run in Burlington, VT: The Volunteers!
Volunteers staff the Sport & Fitness Expo, our 20+ on-course aid stations, as well as the finish area, food tent, course intersections and relay exchange zones, to name a few. Oh yeah, and the awe-inspiring Taiko Drummers (below) never cease to motivate runners as they approach the ascent to Battery Park.
In fact – not counting the several 'impromptu' neighborhood musicians – there are a dozen bands located along the course, which runs through Battery Park four times, making it easy for spectators to cheer the runners multiple times. The finish in Waterfront Park is a short walk from the start allowing friends and family to see their runners at both the start, finish and points in-between.
Our volunteers provide a welcome, community atmosphere for both runners and spectators. This dedicated team is comprised of experienced, committed perennials who work side-by-side with the new generation, showing them the ropes and instilling the same excitement that carries over year-to-year and decade-to-decade. And there are those volunteers who aren't local, but are in Burlington to support a friend or family member and are happy to volunteer, cheer and be part of the largest one-day sporting event in Vermont, the second-largest marathon in New England, and the largest marathon relay in the entire nation.