Plans for this year's festival actually began last year. Patrick
Doolin is the driving force behind much of the coordinating of a
host of volunteers who work out at the airport. Doolin has done this
for …, well, lots of years, learning as he went and making endless
notes. Now a day-by-day timeline of what to do and when to do it
exists in a 27-page document, and that doesn't count a number of
A small "city" is built out of an alfalfa field and is host and
home to many activities for several days.
This doesn't happen without the efforts of countless teams of
volunteers. For instance, early on, the parking lot was marked,
using GPS to create the lanes and "parking blocks" with strategic
mowing of the alfalfa. The green crop is taken out where the cars
will park, and the 2-foot-wide strips that are left represent the
parking blocks. Another team sets out the barrels to mark the
parking rows and denote the driving lanes.
The number of people, entities and agencies is a list way too
long to even begin telling who contributed to make a dream a
reality. There are signs all over town and on roads leading into
Lincoln directing spectators to the myriad of festival events to be
enjoyed. And, there is a volunteer team that undertakes that
challenge with vigor and great attitude.
What many attendees don't consider is the attention paid to
Can you imagine a festival this size without adequate trash
receptacles? Between 15 and 21 large trash bins are brought in, and
countless trash barrels are set around. The Boy Scouts will patrol
the area, picking up litter and keeping the trash cans usable.
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While trash control is important, so are the porta-potties.
Volunteers consult the maps and mark the grounds for locations of
these necessary facilities.
Maps also denote the location of the lighting fixtures for large
events and the emergency routes allowing ambulance and fire truck
access to critical areas.
Nearly every square inch of space is marked on the maps, denoting
the location of countless items that just seem to be there when the
festival gates open.
Another very important component that evolves over the week is
water distribution and electricity. There are teams of professionals
who work to bring those necessary services to fruition. Even the use
of backup generators is on-site in the event of an unexpected power
outage, as just so happened right as the evening band was beginning
a couple of years ago. The night's entertainment was quickly saved.
Our EMA, police, sheriff's deputies, fire departments,
paramedics, auxiliary police, horse search and rescue teams, and a
long list of other safety personnel are on-site as well.
Stop out this weekend and check out what the volunteers have
brought you. Even better, volunteer your time and join their ranks
of sharing with Lincoln.
[By ROY LOGAN]