Members from Phi Sigma Sigma Sorority and Kappa Sigma Fraternity reached out to the community, volunteering their time and efforts by assisting at SIP, the 17th annual McMinnville Wine and Food Classic, at the Evergreen Space Museum on March 12-14.
SIP, an annual event open to all ages, focuses on local wine industries and vineyards. However, this year featured live music with performances from acoustic guitar to baby grand piano, guest chefs from the Northwest, wine tasting, fine art and crafts, helicopter rides and community booths.
Approximately 15 volunteer spots were filled by women from Phi Sigma Sigma, with some taking double and triple shifts. Volunteers worked in a variety of areas during the event, including food services, check-in, will call and doors.
Senior Christina Chuckas filled one of the volunteer spots in food services. Chuckas volunteered at SIP her freshman year by parking cars; this time, she worked inside selling oysters. She ran the cash register and was a food runner the rest of the time.
“I got to run back and forth outside to the barbeque to grab oysters,” she said. “It was fun because it was a group of older guys doing the barbequing, and they were singing and dancing.”
Chuckas said that she enjoyed being on the inside of things this time because there was more interaction with other volunteers and event attendees.
Volunteers from Phi Sigma Sigma were seniors Cori Simmons, Lauren Loepp and Samantha Burby; juniors Kira Goodkin and Tracey Major; sophomores Alex Lovre, Amy Nguyen and Molly Brackman; and freshmen Boram Lee, Jade Rojas and McKenna Pyeatt.
The men from Kappa Sigma were given a different role during the festival. The group volunteered to work in the parking lot all three days.
Sophomore community service chairman Keith Welch said that all of the men did parking because that area needed the most help and it worked best with everyone’s schedules.
Welch said a wide variety of members came out to volunteer and that they worked with individuals from the community.
“It might not seem like we did a lot by just directing traffic, but we made a difference, and it was a good way to help out in the community,” Welch said.
Although one benefit was making a difference in the community, Welch said that another was having a fun volunteer experience with his group.
“It was great bonding with my buddies and having a good time outside of the normal atmosphere of school,” Welch said.
Other volunteers from Kappa Sigma were seniors Eric Philips, Josh Atiyeh and Nicholas Safir; junior Eric Engelson; sophomores Lucas Hixon and Zach Evans; and freshman Josh Melander.
Freshman Leanne McCallum, Phi Sigma Sigma’s philanthropy chairperson, learned about SIP from fliers she saw in the community. McCallum said this was the perfect opportunity to put together one big event for the sorority. She contacted Community Service Coordinator Jessica Wade to see if any other organization had already come to her about volunteering. At the time, no other organization had.
However, Kappa Sigma soon became interested in SIP, as well, and decided to set up its own group of volunteers. Welch organized the volunteer opportunity because he already had experience with SIP from volunteering last year.
Patti Stritzke, SIP’s volunteer coordinator, said she was excited to learn that so many Linfield students were helping out with SIP this year, McCallum said.
Both McCallum and Welch said that they were glad that their organizations could give back and put the Linfield name into the community.
Culture reporter Jessica Prokop can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org