Volunteers help keep Tupelo Elvis Festival Rockin’ and Rollin’
TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) – Thousands of people from across the nation and the world are in Tupelo for that city’s annual Elvis Presley Festival.
It is one of the biggest events for the All America City and has taken a dedicated team of volunteers to make it all work.
As contestants are on stage for Tupelo’s Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist competition, Bobby Geno made sure everything ran smoothly.
“I make sure they guys get up there, stay in line, stay in order, do their song, kind of say, here are the rules, don’t make me come find you,” said Geno.
Bobby is a member of the group of volunteers known as “The Blue Team.”
They cover every aspect of the festival, helping manage other volunteers, doing whatever needs to be done.
Whenever Bobby goes on stage to change out a microphone, the audience cheers for him.
“Bobby is just an amazing guy , this is one of our favorite, if not our favorite because once you’re here and you come that many years, you’re family, it’s not just a cliche, you’re really a family,” said Mitzi Thomassie and Vickie Lang, from Louisiana.
Volunteers also get to know the artists. A longtime Blue Team member even acts as a Tupelo tour guide while trying to keep everyone on schedule.
“It’s a lot of work, getting people where they are, especially when you are dealing with performers, but herding Elvis’ or Elvi as we like to call them, is probably one of the most rewarding, fun things that I get to do,” said a Blue Team member Rachel Ethridge.
Nick Perkins won the Tupelo contest last year and said the Blue Team members are special for many reasons.
“It’s very family oriented, very respectful, they always are there to lend a helping hand, no matter if you need help getting in a jumpsuit, or whatever it is, they’re always there to help,” Perkins said.
Volunteers will be helping until Sunday when the festival wraps up.
Organizers said volunteers are always needed. All you have to do is contact the Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association.