Be Mad at the Warrior Dash, Not the Carman-Ainsworth Band [OPINION]
I can almost always see both sides of the coin but I'm not gonna lie...I think y'all are wrong this time.
We got a message from a band parent from Carman-Ainsworth High School over the weekend, asking if we could share their story - in short, over 30 students and parents volunteered to work the Warrior Dash here in Genesee County on July 27th. In exchange, they were promised a monetary donation based on the number of volunteers who worked the 7+ hour shift.
It was announced recently that Red Frog Events, the company that runs the obstacle course, was filing for bankruptcy and canceling all future events. And as you can probably guess, the band and other local organizations did not receive their donations.
This was like lobbing a softball, in my opinion - a big company stiffed a local marching band out of money? That's wrong. The Facebook comments, however, indicated otherwise.
ARE YOU KIDDING ME???
Y'all are hung up on the fact that they were "volunteering" and should've done so for free? That's not how this works.
Stop getting hung up on the word volunteer. This is NOT the same kind of volunteering that we do for our kids' schools and sporting events. The Warrior Dash was a for-profit event that, in turn for free labor, made donations to local organizations.
THE REASON THAT THEY DO THIS IS SO THAT THEY DON'T HAVE TO HIRE EMPLOYEES AND PAY THEM MINIMUM WAGE.
Do the math: if the Warrior Dash paid 31 people minimum wage ($9.45 in Michigan) to work 7 hours, that would be well over $2,000. That's why they use the word "volunteer."
The Warrior Dash has received an estimated amount of almost $5 million from their participants over the years.
I'm a proud former marching band member, and I know how much these organizations struggle to raise money for their basic needs. The band was going to use that money for uniforms and equipment, so I'll put my money where my mouth is and I hope you will, too.