worktrade

Worktrade Application Now Open

Deadline to Apply: June 15

Our Worktrade is now closed for 2022. 

Thank you for everyone who applied! Passes are still available for purchase online until Saturday, June 4th, and at the gate starting Tuesday, June 7th.

The Firefly Gathering couldn’t happen without the help of its wonderful worktraders! Thank you for your interest in contributing your hands and heart to helping make this event happen.

Before you apply, be sure to read the Worktrade Position Descriptions and the Worktrade FAQ below thoroughly. Everything you need to know, including most commonly asked questions, are here for you on this page! 

There are a limited number of worktrade opportunities for the gathering. We make our best effort to assign applicants to one of their top three choices (which you can indicate on your application), but please note that we can’t accommodate everyone. If we’re not able to assign you to one of your top three choices, we’ll be sure to check in with you before committing you to another position.

please note

Deadline to Apply: June 15

We won’t assign you a shift until we receive your attendance fee and refundable deposit. Read more about how to submit or why we ask for a deposit below in our Worktrade FAQ section.

Filling out the worktrade application does not guarantee you a spot in the worktrade program. If you don’t get assigned, your attendance fee and refundable deposit will be reimbursed.

positions

Thanks so much for considering worktrading with Firefly! Our application for 2022 is now closed. We hope to see you next year! Please see the Gathering tab of our website for more information on purchasing passes. 

Thanks so much for considering worktrading with Firefly!

 Please read the following carefully before filling out the application.

There are a wide variety of General and Specialty positions available. Please thoroughly read the position descriptions (below) so you know what you’re signing up for. If a position has a specific skill set that is required or preferred, please be sure to list your experience/training under the “Requisites” section in your application.

General Worktrade Shifts don’t require significant expertise or special skills: simply a desire to help.

Specialty Worktrade Shifts require expertise in a specific area. Some of these positions include working closely with staff and instructors during the gathering, while some include pre-event work.

worktrade commitments

PARTIAL WORKTRADE

FULL WORKTRADE

TIME COMMITMENT

15 hours / 2 full days (unless otherwise noted)

30 hours / 4 full days / Entirety of Setup/Breakdown (unless otherwise noted)

WORKTRADE FEES

Non-Refundable $175 Attendance Fee

Refundable $50 Deposit

Non-Refundable $40 Attendance Fee

Refundable $75 Deposit

MEALS

2 meals/day during the event
3 meals/day during Setup/Breakdown

2 meals/day during the event
3 meals/day during Setup/Breakdown

PARTIAL WORKTRADE

TIME COMMITMENT

15 hours / 2 full days (unless otherwise noted)

WORKTRADE FEES

Non-Refundable $175 Attendance Fee

Refundable $50 Deposit

MEALS

2 meals/day during the event
3 meals/day during Setup/Breakdown

FULL WORKTRADE

TIME COMMITMENT

30 hours / 4 full days / 

Entirety of Setup/Breakdown (unless otherwise noted)

WORKTRADE FEES

Non-Refundable $40 Attendance Fee

Refundable $75 Deposit

MEALS

2 meals/day during the event
3 meals/day during Setup/Breakdown

shift descriptions

PRE-EVENT  Now –  Saturday, July 13th

SETUP  Saturday, July 13th – Tuesday, July 16th

DURING  Tuesday, July 16th – Sunday, July 21st 

BREAKDOWN  Sunday, July 21st – Tuesday, July 23rd

POST-EVENT: Tuesday, July 23rd – Monday, August 15th

full trades

General Trades:

Administrative Assistant 
During

Help Firefly Staff with all their needs! Must be Google Drive/spreadsheet savvy, and good at working with others. Often includes a lot of “office” time (we promise it’s more fun than it sounds!), printing, and running things out to other parts of the venue. You will be working with our core staff, so it’s a great way to get behind the scenes with our organization. If you’re considering applying to work with Firefly in the future, this is the position for you. 

Main Event Kitchen (Full or Partial Trade options)
Setup, During, Breakdown

Help feed the masses! This shift is perfect for anyone who loves to nourish the community. Plug in and help our Main Event Kitchen Director love everyone by feeding them good food! Some full trades include time helping with Setup/Breakdown. These positions are especially great for those with kitchen experience and/or a desire to learn more about stepping into a kitchen leadership role in the future. 

Parking (Full or Partial Trade options)
Setup, During, Breakdown

Set up parking lots, help people park, welcome folks to the event, and maybe wear a cool vest! Crewmembers must have good spatial awareness and the ability to be simultaneously assertive and welcoming. You’ll be working closely with our Site Crew. Full trades require some availability during Setup and Breakdown.

Registration (Full or Partial Trade options)
Setup, During Event

Be the first to greet folks as they arrive at the gathering! Register and direct participants as they arrive. Must be available starting the Monday before the event. This is a great position for those who are friendly, organized, have great people skills, and don’t mind the hustle/calm ebb and flow.

Setup/Breakdown Kitchen
Setup, Breakdown

Help feed the folks who make Firefly possible! This shift is perfect for anyone who loves to nourish the community. Plug in and help our Setup/Breakdown Kitchen Cook love our worktraders and staff by feeding them good food! 

Setup/Breakdown Site Support
Setup, Breakdown

Be the best go-to person for random tasks! The Site Support worktrader arrives with few expectations and is willing and able to lend a helping hand whenever and wherever help is needed. This position requires attendance of all of Setup and Breakdown.

Site Hand 
Setup, During, Breakdown

Help with carpentry, plumbing, clearing and other infrastructure projects onsite leading up to the gathering, and/or assist a site staff member during the event. Specific schedule and hours will be arranged with the Site Manager. We’re especially looking for experienced carpenters.

Store Assistant 
During, Breakdown

Help our Store Manager run the Camp Store! Duties include tidying up, answering questions, keeping records of sales, handling money, assisting with the raffle ticket sales and keeping an eye on things in general. We are seeking one person who can be onsite from the morning of Tuesday, July 16th through Tuesday, July 23rd and a second person who can complete their whole worktrade during the event (beginning the morning of Wednesday, July 17th and ending on Sunday, July 21st).

Tarps 
Setup, Breakdown

Tarps Crew is responsible for the setup of all the shelters for the event. Tarps crew is a lot like a class in that you will learn several very useful knots and how to erect a tarps or canvas structure. Must be physically capable, focused, and able to follow directions. This position requires attendance of all of Setup and Breakdown.

Truck & Trailer Driver 
Setup and Breakdown

Must have a truck able to haul a trailer. Ideally, you have a flat-bed trailer we could use as well, but it’s not required. We will compensate you for gas. Promptness and ability to keep a schedule are crucial. You will need to be on-call at some points, especially during Setup. As a Truck & Trailer Driver you will be responsible for moving materials (with additional helping hands) from off-site storage locations to the site. Please be local to the Asheville area.

Specialty Trades:

First Aid (Full Trade)
During 

Administer first aid during the gathering. The First Aid booth is focused on herbal wound care, digestive care, nervous and immune system support and much more. Must have prior experience with first aid, clinical environments and outdoor camping. Must be competent and confident enough to treat conditions without supervision and aware enough to transfer care when needed. Herbalists, nurses, wilderness first responders, and other professional health practitioners are welcome to apply. Please describe your experience and training in your application.

First Responder (Full Trade) During

Calling all experienced ER nurses, paramedics, and NPs and physicians! First Responders are “on call.” Instead of having a set schedule, they carry a radio at all times to respond to medical emergencies (should they arise). These superheros are willing to respond to medical calls in an 8am-8pm or 8pm-8am shift.

In the event of an emergency, they work closely with the Wellness Coordinator and the Safety Lead. They are welcome to attend classes or help with the fantastic herbalists at the first aid booth during the day or sleep at night- as long as they can wake up and respond. This position is not only an extremely important and valued role, but also a great opportunity to expand your knowledge of alternative modalities and work in collaboration with experienced herbalists.

This position may not be right for you at this time if:

-You require a full, uninterrupted night of sleep or have big responsibilities at the gathering during the day (depending on your shift)

-You are not easily woken or fully functioning if you were to be woken up
-You are not willing to leave class to respond to a call
-You are not interested and excited to sleep near the first aid booth
-You have little to no hands-on experience or expired certifications
-You are the single caretaker of a minor on site and are unable to leave the minor unattended during a medical situation that requires your full attention
Please consider applying as a first aid booth volunteer instead. Your help is still needed and appreciated!

Photography (Full Trade)
During, Post-Event

Take high-quality photos during the event. This material is used to reach out to folks throughout the year who are looking for what we have to offer. All content created will remain the intellectual property of The Firefly Gathering. You’ll be working with our Marketing Coordinator to complete ~4 hours per day of photography at the event, plus one round of basic editing and photo transfer (for a total of 20 hours at event, and a maxiumum of 10 post event). Staying for the full event is preferred, but a potential partial trade for the weekend would also be considered. Please include a link to samples of your work with your application.

Safety (Full Trade)                         
During

Do you practice your communication skills often? Are you experienced in de-escalation and setting boundaries? Practicing your own personal awareness as well as an awareness as to what’s going on around you? We need you to help keep things running smoothly. This will not be a traditional work trade position. It is an “on call”/”roaming” position. You will work closely with our Health and Safety Coordinator to make sure people are adhering to the community’s boundaries (for example, not swimming at night or leaving unattended children in the lake).

Videography (Full Trade)
During Event, Post-Event

Take high-quality footage during the event, and/or help manage and edit the material we collect throughout the gathering into small pieces for publication. This material is used to reach out to folks throughout the year who are looking for what we have to offer. All content created will remain the intellectual property of The Firefly Gathering. You’ll be working with our Marketing Coordinator for this 20 hour trade.

Youth Program (Full Trade)
During

Work alongside professional educators in the magical Youth Village! This trade is a maximum of 15 total hours in person with children, and up to an additional 2 hours for an orientation meeting with staff. Must have experience working with children and be kind, patient, flexible, and attentive, with the ability to lead/support nature-based activities with groups. Our wonderful youth staff will provide programming ideas and structure. We invite you to collaborate in the process by bringing your individual gifts and passions to Youth Village!

To apply, please provide 2 references, list any relevant experience or trainings (ie first aid/CPR), and share your level of interest and comfortability in leading activities with children, specifying what you hope to bring to Youth Village.

Questions? See FAQ below, and contact our Worktrade Coordinator for more assistance at worktrade@fireflygathering.org.

Or, Scroll On to Read All Partial Trade Options!

partial trades

Conch Blower
During 

This person will be responsible for keeping track of time and blowing the conch to announce the beginning and end of classes. Must be good with timekeeping, as this person holds the pulse of the event. A bike would make this job much easier because the venue is large and we need the conch blown in several locations back to back. Conch-blowing experience is preferred!   

During Event Site Support
During 

Be the best go-to person for random tasks! The Site Support worktrader arrives with few expectations and is willing and able to lend a helping hand whenever and wherever help is needed. Works with the Site Manager to complete tasks to keep the event going smoothly.

Flyering
Pre-Event

Help spread the word about Firefly Gathering and reach those outside of the Asheville area!  A flyering worktrader ideally lives in/near a densely populated area in the Southeast, such as Charlotte or Raleigh/Durham, NC or Atlanta, GA. This position works closely with our Marketing Coordinator and Flyering Assistant. Must use own vehicle. Please note: this role will not have meals included at the gathering as a pre-event trade.

Main Event Kitchen (Full or Partial Trade options)
Setup, During, Breakdown

Help feed the masses! This shift is perfect for anyone who loves to nourish the community. Plug in and help our Main Event Kitchen Director love everyone by feeding them good food! Some full trades include time helping with Setup/Breakdown. These positions are especially great for those with kitchen experience and/or a desire to learn more about stepping into a kitchen leadership role in the future. 

Parking (Full or Partial Trade options)
Setup, During, Breakdown

Set up parking lots, help people park, welcome folks to the event, and maybe wear a cool vest! Crewmembers must have good spatial awareness and the ability to be simultaneously assertive and welcoming. You’ll be working closely with our Site Crew. Full trades require some availability during Setup and Breakdown.

Registration (Full or Partial Trade options)
Setup, During Event

Be the first to greet folks as they arrive at the gathering! Register and direct participants as they arrive. Must be available starting the Monday before the event. This is a great position for those who are friendly, organized, have great people skills, and don’t mind the hustle/calm ebb and flow.

Sanitation
During 

Calling for gallant defenders of health, wellness, and peace of mind. Help protect all present by keeping communal spaces clean and tidy. Spaces include our bathrooms and community kitchen, among others.

Ready to Apply? Click Below!

Questions? See our FAQ below. For further inquiries, please contact our Worktrade Coordinator at worktrade@fireflygathering.org

faq

The Worktrade Application will be available starting February 1, 2024. We encourage folks to apply sooner rather than later!

Options for this are very limited. This can work well when a During Event position is paired with a Pre-Event position, but we do not allow folks to do more than one During Event position. Please note that if you are only available for Setup OR Breakdown, we cannot assign you to a Setup/Breakdown position, as these are typically full trades that we do our best not to split into partials.

Attendance Fee – We ask for a $40 attendance fee to help cover the cost of the venue and food for our kitchens so that we can provide the worktrade crew and staff with filling, nourishing meals. The $175 fee paid by partial worktraders includes the attendance fee and the cost of a discounted full-event ticket.

Refundable Deposit – We want to know that you will come, as we need the help you are agreeing to give! Over the years, refundable deposits have provided the best assurance of accountability. We will keep your deposit only if you don’t show up or don’t complete your hours for a reason we deem unacceptable. If an immediate family member dies or you break your leg, and/or you cancel by April 30, 2024, we will give back your deposit. If you decide to change your plans, your ride falls through, or you cancel after April 30th, we probably won’t give it back. We rely on worktraders to run this event, so please resolve what you need to resolve in order to follow through on your commitment! We thank you.

If you apply for a General Position, you can expect to hear from us within 10 business days. Please allow up to 15 business days for Specialty Position applications. We only process Worktrade Applications once the Worktrade Attendance Fee and Deposits are received. If you are mailing a check, please give adequate time for the check to get to us. If you do not hear from us within 10-15 business days, please contact our Worktrade Coordinator at worktrade@fireflygathering.org.

We accept payment by credit/debit card upon submission of your online application. All Attendance Fees must be paid online. Your Refundable Deposit can be paid online upon submission of your application, or you can choose to send us a check if you apply prior to May 15th. Mailing a personal check is a great alternative for folks who don’t have the funds to pay online, as we will not cash your deposit unless you do not show up for your worktrade as agreed.

If you wish to pay your refundable deposit by check:

  • Send a personal check for $75 for a Full Worktrade application or $50 for a Partial Worktrade application
  • Make the check out to Firefly Gathering and put “WT Deposit” and the worktrade applicant’s name in the memo line
  • Mail to the address included in the automatic email confirmation you’ll receive after submitting your application

By successfully completing your worktrade assignments and having a Firefly Staff sign off on your contribution to the gathering! If you complete your worktrade, we will refund your online payment or rip up your check.

Worktraders have the option of purchasing meal passes for their children attending the event. Again, please keep in mind that this is intended only for your own children/those you parent, and not your friend or neighbor’s children. Child meal tickets cover meals during the event only and do not include setup/breakdown meals. Prices are as follows:

  • Ages 3-7: $75 per person
  • Ages 8-17: $150 per person

Due to the limitations of our kitchen, Firefly is unable to offer meals to additional guests and adult family members of worktraders, and adult guests will not have the option to purchase meals from our kitchen. 

Our worktrade positions require a lot of care and focus, and can involve equipment and activities dangerous to untrained people. For this reason, we do not allow children to hang out with you while you worktrade. Please arrange to have someone you trust care for your children’s needs during your worktrade shifts. If you are worktrading during setup/breakdown, please arrange to have your children cared for offsite. We are willing to consider exceptions if your child is 12 or older as long as they can safely be onsite without supervision and you are willing to be responsible for their needs, including food, in addition to your worktrade responsibilities. 

Please contact our Worktrade Coordinator at worktrade@fireflygathering.org if you have questions or would like to discuss options.

Yes! We are happy to offer a 20% discount on child and youth passes for the children of worktraders. Please note this discount is intended only for your children/those you parent, and is not available for additional kids that may come along with you. Please reach out to our Worktrade Coordinator at worktrade@fireflygathering.org for details.

Good question! We ask that if you have the capability to worktrade, do that so that our Equity Fund can support as many people as possible! It’s also a great way to be a part of the crew and help create the magic. If the Equity Fund is truly the only means available, then that’s what it’s for; but please be sure to read through the guidelines to ensure that you are a right fit for this discount. Sometimes the two can be combined, reach out to worktrade@fireflygatheirng.org for questions and details. 

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Subscribe to our newsletter for updates on all things Firefly, including Perennial Workshops, Firefly's Book Nook, and Annual Gathering News.

Kimberly Dunn

Finance Manager (she/her)

Having grown up in a multicultural family, Kimberly’s love for languages and traditional cultures is infused into everything she creates. After many years overseas, she now calls the Appalachian mountains her home and continues to keep the adventure alive by staying close to the wild. Kimberly is a singer songwriter, dancer, women’s circle facilitator, personal finance astrologer, bookkeeper, yoga teacher, and chef.