Volunteer Appreciation Week Highlight

Written by: Charly Bax, Chamber Young Professionals Committee + Innovation Analyst at TD Commercial Banking. 

On April 6th, 2024, the first Saturday in April, the 60th Elmira Maple Syrup Festival took place welcoming over 80,000 thousand attendees. This community event would not be possible without amazing volunteers who put in countless hours of work before, during, and after the event.  The CYP Committee had the opportunity to speak with Quentin Mayer, Vice Chair of the ElmiraMaple Syrup Festival, to learn more about his experience volunteering.


How long have you been volunteering with the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival?

“I have been volunteering with the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival in many different capacities over

the past 15 years. 8 years ago, I was approach by the then Chairperson of the Elmira Maple

Syrup Festival to join the group of 20 individuals who really spearhead the core areas of the

festival. I have taken on many different roles with the festival most recently organizing the

downtown mall with 120+ vendors. 2 years ago, I was elected by the committee to serve as our

Vice-Chair in conjunction with my current capacity. Myself and our Chair lead now a team of 30

individuals to deliver year after year one of the most sought-after events in our local



And what sparked your interest in volunteering with the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival?

“I was part of the Elmira Scout Group for many years and one area that we as scouts took part in

with the festival was the garbage collection and sanitation on the downtown mall. Seeing the

amount of people that attended the festival back then really sparked my interest in growing my

volunteering commitments and being a part of something that has become so special for so

many in this community. When I was given the opportunity to join the board, I couldn’t say no! I

knew I could contribute in some form to this committee to make this event even more of a

success in years to come…. which it has become!”


What would you say is your favourite part of volunteering?

“It always comes down to the people. Working with a team of 30 motivated individuals on our

committee and hundreds of other external volunteers, all working towards the common goal of

providing a one-of-a-kind festival year after year to support our local community is always

something to proud of. We pour our hearts and souls into this festival because we are

passionate about delivering this event to so many thankful festival attendees. After reaching

80,000 attendees this year and seeing the resounding positive feedback from tons of

festivalgoers give me a very heart-warming feeling.”


What would you say to anyone considering volunteering for the first time?

“Don’t be afraid to throw your hand up and contribute wherever you can. Everyone has unique

experiences and talents that they bring to different roles. Volunteering is the perfect

opportunity to showcase your strengths and be recognized for it. Doesn’t matter if you don’t

succeed or things don’t go as planned, you’re always surrounded by others that you can lean on

and get help from. What it really comes down to at the end of the day, just do it! Volunteering is

a great way to grow and develop your strengths and improve on weaknesses both in peoples

personal and professional lives. All I can say it has worked for me and I am forever grateful for

the people I have met and the experience I have gained from volunteering!”

Thank you to all who came out to support the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival, and especially to all the volunteers who worked hard to put this event on! If you are interested in volunteering at the festival in the future check out the https://www.elmiramaplesyrupfestival.com/ for more information.