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Volunteer Spotlight


Eric Smith

Q: Why do you volunteer?

A: I was looking for something to do with my spare time. I work for Publix Super Markets but have always had a huge passion for sports. I saw an opportunity to volunteer with the Tampa Bay Sports Commission’s Gameday of Champions Soccer event and signed up. I had such a great time and the experience was one-of-a-kind. It made me want to get more involved and I have been volunteering with them ever since.


Q: What was your favorite Women’s Final Four memory from 2015?

A: The first time I ever volunteered with the Women’s Final Four it was over Easter weekend. I was a fluid volunteer, trying to jump in at every opportunity I could. It was relatively warm outside and it was all hands on deck trying to make

sure fans stayed hydrated as they were shooting hoops and stopping at all of the activation sites in Tourney Town. I remember stopping for a moment to look around and take the moment in. I saw all four of the different teams fans interacting and meeting each other, having so much fun and celebrating just being there. I thought it was so cool to be able to witness that first hand. They were so passionate and so excited, I tried that much harder to make sure they had a great time while they were in Tampa Bay and I am excited to meet more fans this April!


Q: Why should other people want to volunteer?

A: It doesn’t matter what event it is, I love Tampa Bay and I love showcasing our community to the visitors that come in with events or people in our community that are participating in the events. There are so many exciting and new things that are happening. To be able to get a behind the scenes look into what goes into the events is also fun. I never knew how much really went into planning these small and large scale events.


Q: What has been your most Memorable Experience as a volunteer overall?

A: The Gameday of Champions for Youth Football has a special place in my heart and it was my introduction into the volunteer program with the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. Over the years as I have volunteered with the event and there have been a few teams that have come back more than once. There was one year that I got to open up the Tampa Bay Buccaneers locker room door and watch some of the youth football players walk inside. To see the looks on their faces as they walked in and saw these things for the first time made me pretty special.

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