Volunteer Spotlight: Sharon Margetts

We’re shining some light on our amazing volunteers who work tirelessly behind the scenes to bring our most popular events, like the Great Vic Bike Ride, to life.

Meet Sharon:
  1. How many years have you volunteered on the Great Vic?

My first GVBR was in 1998 when the event started in Corowa (NSW). Between then and now, I have only missed one Great Vic.

  1. What’s your favourite thing about volunteering on the Great Vic?

Each GVBR is a new adventure. The ride is always evolving – new initiatives, new processes, new people, and new places to explore.

Getting into the outdoors and surrounding myself with other like-minded people. Great friendships have been made.

For a week I can totally immerse myself in doing something completely different to my usual ‘9 to 5’ job.

  1. What’s the best thing about volunteering on the Signs team?

Being part of the Signs team that put out the directional signs to guide the riders between campsites, it is the next best thing to actually riding.

We get to see the sun come up each day, the incredible scenery the riders are seeing and experience the efforts some go to in welcoming the ride into their community.

  1. What is your top tip for first time volunteers?

One tip is not enough!  So, my top five tips are:

  • Be flexible – things change, particularly the weather so just go with it.
  • Talk with other volunteers – anyone in a cyan-coloured shirt will assist, guide, support and encourage you
  • Take the time to explore the towns / communities along the way
  • Speak up – if you see something that could be improved let someone know. It may have been considered before, but then it might not have been
  • Embrace the ride and enjoy - be content knowing you have made a difference to those on the ride
  1. Do you have a favourite Great Vic memory?

Despite all the years being involved with the ride, it still amazes me that the GVBR is effectively a small town moving from place to place throughout country Victoria for 8 days. And the only thing we leave behind in the communities are the bike tracks in the dirt and great memories for them of the day 3000-4000 bike riders came to their town.

Favourite memories? 

  • Small communities – Moyhu, Gellibrand, Boort, Marysville, Wedderburn, Glengarry…
  • The Great Vic in South Australia (Mt Gambier, Robe) and New South Wales (Corowa, Barham)
  • River-front campsite at Albury, swimming hole at Moyhu, jigsaw puzzles in the park at Mirboo North …
  • Supporting riders to complete their first 100km in a day ride
  • 8000 riders on the Great Ocean Road
  • Weather – rain and mud at Dookie, storms at Portland and Tawonga Gap, heat at Whitfield and Halls Gap

Gippsland is always a favourite route - the region has so much to offer. (I am a bit biased!)

  1. What would you say to someone thinking about volunteering on the Great Vic?

Do it!  Volunteering is generally about helping others. So, what better way to help others than support them to have an enjoyable and memorable bike-riding holiday. It is also a terrific way to see and experience country Victoria.

Thank you Sharon! We can’t wait to see you on the Great Vic!

If you or someone you know would like to be involved, you can learn more here.

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