You Can Help Make LaughFest Happen!

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In 2011, people thought that we were seriously crazy when we said we wanted to put on a 10-day festival of laughter.  Five festivals later, LaughFest is wildly successful, garnering praise from artists and attendees alike!  How does Gilda’s LaughFest manage put on so many diverse events at multiple venues during the course of the festival?

ONLY WITH LOTS OF VOLUNTEERS! Our volunteers are not only part of what makes LaughFest so great; they are also a big part of what makes it possible.

When you volunteer for LaughFest, you are instrumental in creating a fantastic festival experience for all.  We have needs before, during, and after the festival, so you can volunteer to help out in many different ways.  While you are volunteering, a Gilda’s LaughFest staff member or volunteer leader will work with you to provide direction, answer questions, and make sure you’re having a lot of laughs along the way!

Whether you choose to volunteer a little or a lot, know you will be bringing smiles and laughter to the lives of many…all while helping Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids!


2016 Volunteer Applications are now open!  Sign Up Now icon


2016 Volunteer Teams Include:

  • Front of House Team: This team is the face of LaughFest to many festival guests. Duties may include greeting and directing, coat check, door guard, ushering, and ticket-taking. Recommended skills and experience for this position include: customer service, hospitality, and special event work.
  • Retail Team: As a Retail volunteer, you will be a “Yellow Up” guru for festival guests. The Retail Team will be responsible for the promotion and sales of LaughFest merchandise at various venues throughout the festival. Recommended skills and experience for this position include: customer service, sales, and an outgoing personality.
  • LaughFest Central Team: The LaughFest Central Team will be stationed at the Grand Rapids Art Museum. Team members will be responsible for assisting with office type duties, selling retail, and providing a concierge role for patrons who walk into LaughFest Central and need assistance planning their Festival experience. Must be able to multi-task, enjoy working with people, and have an upbeat and positive attitude. Working knowledge of downtown Grand Rapids and surrounding area and experience working in an office setting is a plus.
  • Office/Clerical Team: As an Office/Clerical volunteer, you will help support the LaughFest staff with various important administrative tasks and projects both prior to and during the festival.
  • High Five Team: As a member of the High Five team you’ll be an ambassador of our High Five Campaign, which raises funds that go directly to our Grand Rapids and Lowell Gilda’s Club kids grief and cancer programs. At events, you’ll be asking attendees to make a contribution to the High Five Campaign and serve as a resource for any questions attendees might have about the campaign.
  • Go-Do Team: As a Go-Do volunteer, you will be key to the smooth operation of the festival. Responsibilities may include tasks and projects at LaughFest Central; distribution of event materials, merchandise, food, etc.; running errands; and fulfilling last-minute/unexpected needs that arise throughout your shift. Recommended skills and experience for this position include: multi-tasking, enjoy working with people, and an upbeat and positive attitude. May need to use your own vehicle. Working knowledge of downtown Grand Rapids and surrounding area, and experience working in retail or inventory a plus.
  • Back of House Team: Back of House volunteers are instrumental in putting on events. Some of the roles require specific backstage technical experience (spotlights, sound system, video cameras), while others deal with event set up, venue reset, tear down, and security.
  • Photo/Video Team: Assist with photography and videography for Festival promotions and events. You will be asked to use your own photo/video equipment.
  • Merchandise Room Team: Assist with the packing, sorting, and inventory of merchandise and other items that are distributed to LaughFest shows each day. This team will work at Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids.
  • Seriously Funny Adventure Challenge Team: Members of this team get to be part of the pre-adventure action which involves assembling challenge participant packets days before the event. On the day of the event, volunteers will be greeting attendees and checking them in as they arrive or setting up and monitoring a challenge. This is a volunteer team that will generate some seriously fun memories.
  • FUNderwear Run Team: Come be a part of the FUN! Help us put on this seriously funny 5K. Duties may include guiding runners on the course, distributing water/snacks, and cheering everyone along!
  • Transportation Team: As a Transportation volunteer, you will be the wheels of festival operation. The Transportation Team will work together to transport volunteers, staff, and artists to and from various locations during the festival. Must be at least 25 years old to be considered. A background check and interview will be required for this position, should you be approved for this team. Positions are limited.
  • Venue Captains: Venue Captains (VCs) will be responsible for knowing the details of running all aspects of an event at a specific venue. VCs need to be comfortable in a management role and must be available for a minimum of 5 volunteer shifts during the 10-day festival. Ideally, these shifts should be limited to no more than 2 venues in order to provide consistent leadership for the general volunteers. VCs are hand selected for this position.


Presented by:




Underwritten by:


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If you have any questions, please email volunteer@laughfestgr.org or call (616) 735-HAHA.