Join the Big Bear Lake International Film Festival in celebrating its 14th year! Volunteers are needed from September 19-22 across all departments. We are now accepting applications for both full-time and part-time volunteers! This is a wonderful opportunity to see the inner workings of how a film festival operates. The film festival annually brings an exciting slate of Independent Films, Up-and-coming Filmmakers and Industry Professionals to the Big Bear community. But none of it can happen without YOU! Volunteers support the festival from start to finish. Between working short and manageable shifts, volunteers attend the festival and enjoy great perks such as free film tickets, access to discussion panels, a festival T-shirt, discounted admission to select Special Events, discounted merchandise, networking opportunities, parties and more!

How to Apply:

  • Checkout the break-down of our Volunteer Departments below! Consider where your talents are best suited. and how much of a time-commitment you are free to make (decide between a Full-Time or a Part-Time position).
  • Apply to volunteer! Fill out and Submit the 2013 Application Form. (EXTENDED DEADLINE 9/13!!)
  • Receive your assignment. Selected applicants will be offered positions by the first week of September.
  • Verify Schedule & Complete On-Line Training. Once you accept your assignment, your schedule and training materials will be emailed to you.
  • Time to Fest! After Festival check-in on the 19th, meet your team, receive your credentials and and kick-back at the Volunteer Meet & Greet Party. Then get some sleep, ready for 3 jam-packed days of films, panels, special events, and more!

Volunteer Department Breakdown

There are many ways for volunteers to get involved at the Big Bear Lake International Film Festival! Learn about each department’s specific duties below.

Operations/Theater Team Volunteers

Be in the thick of the action! Are you a decisive, and energetic person? Are you cool under pressure or have a knack for crowd control? Are you fluent in customer service? Theater Team may be the assignment for you. As a volunteer on the Theater Teams you will work at one of our festival venues. Theater Team Volunteers are responsible for guiding our patrons through the festival experience. Your duties could include everything from answering questions, to managing lines and ticket taking, to facilitating filmmaker Q&As. Theater Team is a great position for volunteers who enjoy interacting with new and interesting people, have a positive outlook, and with a healthy dose of patience.

Street Team

Volunteers on our Street Team are true jacks-of-all-trades. As a member of this team you will have the opportunity to do a bit of everything. Your primary duties include maintaining a presence outside in the Village (weather permitting) offering information, answering questions, and encouraging people to check out the festival.  In addition, the Street Team Volunteers are the first place the festival coordinators will turn in the event another volunteer can’t make their assigned shift. You will receive brief training in all of the facets of our volunteer program and be able to step in should one of our other teams need the support. As a volunteer on the Street Team you are the face of the festival, so this assignment is best suited to positive and outgoing people who enjoy helping others.


 As a volunteer on the Production team you have access to all of the behind the scenes action at the festival. Your primary responsibilities include the set-up and break-down of the   venues and event spaces. You will be called upon to hang festival posters, way-finding signage, etc. and may help with deliveries between venues. Production is a great department for volunteers with strong time management skills, who are creative problem solvers and who love to be active.


All of the films at BBLIFF are eligible for Audience Awards, which are announced on the final day of the festival. At each screening Patrons are given ballots which are collected and delivered to the accounting department for counting. Volunteers in Accounting are responsible for collecting the ballots and working with Festival Coordinators to tally votes. Confidentiality is paramount in this process. Accounting will also work closely with the Merchandise Team, and with Box Office and Ticketing to reconcile each venue’s admissions reports.

Tech & Print Traffic

Tech & Print Traffic is the lifeline of the festival. This is the team for tech wizards who are efficient and reliable.  This team manages all the technical aspects of the festival, including working closely with production on the installation of temporary venues/event spaces, and running the logistics of moving films. Volunteers in this department are highly encouraged to bring a vehicle.


The Hospitality Team manages the Filmmaker Lounge, Festival Headquarters and a few special events that occur during the festival. The Hospitality Team is responsible for all duties relating to these venues and events. Volunteers on the Hospitality Team wear many hats during the festival, including host/hostess, server, busser, event planner and usher. Hospitality will work closely with the Production Team and/or Information Team. Experience hosting, planning events, serving, or bartending is a plus. As are excellent customer service skills, having a knack for design, and a general love being on your feet.


Know the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland? This is you. Wranglers are an elite team of volunteers responsible for keeping everyone on schedule. As a Wrangler you will assist our  Honorees, Panelists, and Filmmakers, helping them get from A to B in a timely fashion. Wranglers must be assertive, friendly and have excellent communication skills. At some point Wranglers interact with every team at the Festival.

Box Office

Box Office is team is a multitasking paradise. You will distribute, collect and account for all tickets during the festival. Box Office Team is responsible for selling tickets, handling cash and receipts, tracking admission information and reconciling sales with accounting. This is a great spot for volunteers who enjoy being busy and keeping people in line.


Volunteers on the Information Team are invaluable, and are in many ways the voice of the festival. At times, the Information Team will work closely with the Hospitality Team to manage the Filmmaker Lounge and Festival Headquarters. As a member of this team your duties boil down to questions and answers. You will know the ins and outs of the festival, and be able to guide patrons and filmmakers alike through any problems they may encounter. On the off chance you are asked a question you don’t know the answer to, you will have the resources needed to find it. This is an excellent team for locals, or people very familiar with Big Bear, as well as our most outgoing, enthusiastic and helpful volunteers.

Merchandise Team

Calling all shopaholics! Here is your opportunity to sell our beautifully designed and highly desirable t-shirts! The Merchandise Team facilitates all of our souvenir sales during the festival. Volunteers will staff our small pop-up shops, sell our limited merchandise, help track inventory and handle cash. Volunteers will work closely with Festival Coordinators, and at times the Accounting and Hospitality teams to run these shops. Retail experience is a plus.

Volunteer Requirements

  • Volunteers must be 18 or over before the 2013 Festival. (Some exceptions apply. Email volunteers@bigbearfilmfestival.com with questions or concerns.)
  • Volunteers must be able to commit to working at least 2 shifts during the festival. Shifts last a minimum of 3 hours. You may sign up to complete all shifts during one day of the festival.
  • Lodging is not guaranteed. Some housing will be provided for Department Coordinators. Big Bear Lake is a resort town and there are many affordable housing options. For help securing lodging, email volunteers@bigbearfilmfestival.com with the term FESTIVAL LODGING in the subject line.

Volunteer Benefits

Volunteers enjoy exclusive benefits and perks throughout the Festival!

  • Volunteer Meet & Greet Party
  • Free tickets for Films and Panels
  • Official Festival T-shirt
  • Free admission to Saturday Night Centerpiece Film (film only)
  • Discounted admission to Special Events
  • 10% Discount on Festival Merchandise
  • Light meals and snacks during shifts
  •  And more!

 APPLY TODAY! 2013 BBLIFF Volunteer Application

Questions? Email us at volunteers@bigbearfilmfestival.com or give us a call at 909-866-3433.

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The Big Bear Lake International Film Festival is a non-profit organization.