The Iditarod Trail Committee, Inc. is a 501 C (3) organization supported by sponsors, members and volunteers. Your contribution to “The Last Great Race on Earth” is vital to the sustainability of the organization. If you are a volunteer and not an ITC member, we would encourage you to become one. Your membership keeps the heritage and tradition of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race alive for future generations to enjoy. Become a member.
*PLEASE NOTE: We will be accepting registration from volunteers in October or November. Please check back here at that time.
Volunteers are required to pick up Race Credentials and sign a release form (PDF 44k) before checking in with individual coordinators for assignments. There is a mandatory $10.00 registration fee (waived for current members) which ensures that all volunteers have coverage under the insurance plan, described below.
The ITC secondary accident insurance plan provides certain benefits, including medical expense coverage, in the event that an individual is injured while performing volunteer duties/responsibilities on behalf of the race. In the event of an incident resulting in injury, immediately report to your coordinator to fill out an incident report. This must be done within 24 hours of the incident in order to be submitted to our insurance company.
For those volunteers living in the Mat Su valley, you can register at ITC headquarters, Mile 2.2 Knik-Goose Bay Road, in Wasilla, February 9th & 10th from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM. The volunteer desk will be opened at the Millennium Hotel in Anchorage from February 16th – March 8th, 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM for those volunteers coming in from out of town or who live in the Anchorage area. For those volunteering only in Nome, a volunteer desk will be set up in the Mini Convention Center beginning March 10th for your convenience.
Volunteers looking for housing while in Anchorage, consider supporting race sponsor, the Millennium Alaskan Hotel. Special benefits are being offered to volunteers that cannot be beat. Not only will you be in the middle of race headquarters 24/7, but room rates are $69 per night, 20% discount on all meals, (excludes alcohol), and free wi-fi throughout the hotel. Book your room now . (2013 Rate)
Information for those applying for volunteer positions with the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race
Thank you for your interest to become an Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Volunteer! On this page you’ll find some brief information about the various volunteer opportunities involved with the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. Please read this information before clicking on one of the volunteer forms.
There is contact information provided in some instances. It’s important that you take the time to decide what volunteer activities you want to be involved with before filling out your volunteer forms. When you’ve made your choice(s), click on the appropriate volunteer form, fill it out, and click submit! It’s that easy! (See links below to register.)
After your volunteer form is submitted, your information on the form is sent to the volunteer coordinators. Please be patient, our volunteer coordinators begin contacting volunteers in January. If you contact coordinators with questions, do not assume you have registered. It is essential you fill out the application regardless of any commitment by a coordinator in order for the ITC to have your credentials prepared when you arrive to register.
[Coming Soon] 2014 Volunteer form for the Start of the race. (Anchorage,Wasilla, Willow, and the Trail)
[Coming Soon] 2014 Volunteer form for Finish/ Nome.
Volunteers may pick up race credentials and sign release forms at ITC headquarters, Mile 2.2 Knik-Goose Bay Road, in Wasilla, February 9th & 10th from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM, or at the Millennium Hotel in Anchorage from February 16th – March 8th, 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM in the lobby, beginning March 10th at the Nome Mini Convention Center (for those volunteering only in Nome.)
Important Note: Any volunteer working on the trail that may fly with the Iditarod Air Force, must be a member of the Iditarod Trail Committee.
Date: Thursday Evening, February 28
Time: Doors open at 5:00
Where: Deniana Center, downtown Anchorage
Tickets: Click here: Banquet Tickets
Anchorage, Wasilla, Willow and the Trail — Needs at Race Time
Information regarding housing needs and offerings for people coming to the race
The ITC cannot pay for volunteer transportation or lodging, but we will attempt to assist you in finding housing in Anchorage such as recommending you stay at the Millennium Hotel. Please be prepared to pay for lodging.
Information regarding housing for those who can provide housing
Teams and/or volunteers coming in from out of state are often looking for housing. If you are able to provide housing, but would like additional information regarding housing an out-of-state volunteer or team, please contact the Iditarod Housing Coordinator. Whether you have housing or need housing, it’s important to check the appropriate box on the form to start the process.
Race Headquarters at the Millennium Alaskan Hotel
The ITC’s Official Race Headquarters during the majority of the race is the Millennium Alaskan Hotel, located at 4800 Spenard Road, Anchorage, Alaska. The Millennium is the hub of all Iditarod activity before teams begin arriving in Nome. When you click on the volunteer form, you’ll find a number of volunteer activities that take place there. You may want to consider volunteering for more than one activity. We ask that you number your choices in order of preference.
Moving furniture in and out of the Millennium Hotel
The Iditarod uses many rooms at the Millennium that have to have furniture taken out of them so tables and other things can be moved in. That furniture is stored in a van provided by Horizon Lines that is parked in the hotel parking lot. Volunteers work with hotel personnel to move this furniture on Wednesday, February 20th. A dozen or so strong backs are needed for this. The furniture has to be moved back in again on or about Thursday, March 21st.
Volunteer Registration Desk
As volunteers come into the Millennium Hotel for the first time, they need to check in at the Volunteer Registration Desk to confirm their volunteer information and receive their credentials. A team of three people per shift, (4 hour shifts) will be needed beginning Saturday Feb.16th through March 8th. The desk will be open from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm daily. Volunteers need to be comfortable with a computer to help with data input, and be able to maintain a sense of humor in the middle of chaos. Training will be available on site. (If you are volunteering only in Nome, it is not necessary that you check in at the Volunteer Registration Desk in Anchorage. You can do that when you get to Nome.)
Phone Room Volunteer
The phone room begins its activity during business hours the week before the race. On the first Saturday in March, phone room activity ramps up considerably with as many as seven volunteers manning telephones and computers per shift around the clock. This activity lasts for two weeks (or longer). Volunteers answer questions about the race, the mushers, and many other Iditarod related topics.
Computers are located at each work station so volunteers have instant access to current race information. All volunteers are provided with resources and information that help answer race-fan questions.
Shifts are usually four hours each. Trainings for phone room volunteers are February 26th at 10 a.m., March 1st at 6 p.m. and March 7th at 10 a.m. Please plan to attend one of these training sessions. Your time spent training will help you function in a confident and business-like manner.
Race Stats (Computer Input) Volunteer
A tremendous amount of data is constantly coming in from the trail via email. Reports about each team, when they arrive at each checkpoint, when they leave, and how many dogs are all a part of the information flow that needs to be inputted and posted on www.iditarod.com. Race Stats volunteers must have PC/Windows experience and be at least 18 yrs. old. They must be dependable, detail oriented, have good typing skills and be able to compose and send emails using Microsoft Outlook. This department is located at the Millennium Hotel. Work begins on the evening of Restart day and concludes when the last team arrives in Nome. Six hour shifts begin at 6a.m., 12 p.m., 6 p.m. and 12 midnight. Two volunteers are needed per shift. Training is provided during your first shift, so there is no need to attend a special training session.
Merchandise Sales Volunteer
Merchandise sales is a very important part of the Iditarod’s fundraising activities. During the race, sales at the Wasilla Headquarters, Fifth Avenue Mall Iditarod Shop and through mail order continue as they do year round. Additionally, the ITC sets up a retail sales outlet at the Millennium, and in Nome, Alaska at the Mini Convention Center. Merchandise sales at the Millennium opens on or about February 4th and closes March 18th. The Millennium sets up a great area for Iditarod’s merchandise sales in the lobby. If you enjoy visiting with people from all over the world, this could be a great volunteer opportunity. During the busiest times, there may be a need for as many as five or six volunteers during a shift. Volunteers who man the cash register and charge machines will receive advance training. Additional help is also needed for setup and shift coverage during February, before the race week begins.
Dropped Dog Volunteer
Dropped dogs is the term used to describe the canine athletes who have been part of a musher’s team during the race and have been dropped out of the race at one of the checkpoints for one reason or another. These athletes are transported back to Anchorage. They arrive in Anchorage at either Ted Steven’s International Airport or on Lake Hood just behind the Millennium. Dog Drop volunteers assist in helping the dogs de-plane and the provide care for them until either they are picked up by their musher’s designated handler or are taken out to Hiland Mountain Correctional Center where they are cared for by inmates until they are picked up by handlers. The Dog Drop volunteers are involved in caring for the dogs as well as contacting handlers to schedule pickups and maintaining records of each canine athlete in their care.
Race Communications Volunteer
Five areas of race communications need volunteers.
(1) The Jr. Iditarod uses amateur radio operators (HAM radio) for communications.
(2) The Race Start and (3) Restart use cell phones and/or commercial radios for their operations.
(4) Race Headquarters Communications (HQ Comms) at the Millennium Hotel requires PC Windows experience and volunteers must be at least 18 yrs. old. HQ Comms operates 24×7 in 6-hour shifts, so 160 shifts are available for volunteers. HQ Comms volunteers are also needed for pre-race and post-race organizational duties beginning Feb. 16th.
(5) Trail Comms also requires PC Windows experience and volunteers must be at least 18 yrs. old. Trail Comms volunteers are assigned to checkpoints where conditions may be less than ideal: sleeping on the floor with assignments that vary from 4 to 14 days, without a shower. Teamwork is essential. Trail Comms prerequisites include HQ Comms and Race Stats experience and demand for physical activity. Volunteers assigned to comms will be notified of training dates.
There are trail positions for volunteers that are based mainly on skill sets and experience. Please take a minute and read the information on the registration form. Trail positions require a high demand for physical activity. If you would like to apply for a trail position, please check that box and we’ll talk to you about it, but know that most trail positions are filled with returning volunteers.