Welcome back to our Crew Appreciation series. It takes a community of dedicated, passionate individuals to help create the magic of Shambhala. We are so fortunate to host talented crew members from across the globe as we all come together on the Farm to turn dreams into reality. Over the next few weeks, we will be featuring influential members from various teams on the Farm. Today we feature Blaze Burgers Griller, Siyee Man-Vandyck.
“Real World” job: TIG Welder at a Metal Fabrication Shop
Shambhala Job: Griller at Blaze Burgers–2017 was the first time I ever had a meat-based burger, and it was a Blaze Burger!
Shambhala Spirit Animal: Hummingbird, but it’s been years since I’ve spun the wheel!
Favorite Snack on the Farm: Coconut Water w/ Pulp!
SMF: How did you first hear about Shambhala?
SMV: Years ago, I was picking cherries in the Okanagan Valley. A couple of our friends were passing through and told us about this amazing festival in the Kootenays. They strongly suggested we make our way over to check it out. My sister was traveling back from the Yukon and her car died a near where we were working. We got together and decided to hitchhike to Salmo to see what this Shambhala thing was all about. It was one of the best decisions I ever made!
SMF: What made you join the SMF Crew? What keeps you coming back?
SMV: My friend Natalya put a call out to fill some open spots on her crew. The metal shop I work at was having a slow period, so I went for it. I hadn’t been able to attend Shambhala in the past couple years, so it was the perfect opportunity to go back AND give back to the festival I love. I’ve worked and volunteered at several other music festivals and have never experienced working with a crew that vibed so hard! Everyone got along very well and help each other pull through the busy busy times when everyone needed their burgers!
SMF: What’s your favourite Shambhala Memory?
SMV: In 2012 I took a train from Winnipeg, MB to Jasper, AB. From there, I hitchhiked the rest of the way to the ranch. I first got picked up by a guy who was a representative for very well known energy drink company. During the time he and I drove together we drank too many cans of the “go juice” and made many stops to create new adventure sports. Things like “Extreme Downhill Glacier Running”, “Extreme Bridge Top Boulder Drop”, “Extreme Waterfall Trail Running”. And so on, and so forth.
We had a conversation about how the area we were driving through was home to pretty much all of North America’s deadliest predatory animals. About five minutes after this conversation ended, we came to our fork in the road. He dropped me off in the middle of no where as the sun was setting and traffic was very low.
I stood there on the shoulder, waited, watching the sun slowly sinking. Only a hand full of vehicles passed by before I decided to walk toward the tree line and set up my hammock for the night. As I was making my way toward the trees I heard something. From over the ridge there was a noise getting closer and closer. It sounded like… electronic music? Slowly crawling in my direction was a large painted up school bus blaring deep house music.
“Got any smokes?” the lone driver yelled out to me.
“Hell yeah!” I responded.
I had thought I was going to be spending the night with the wolverines and mountain lions that night. Instead, I was taken to a night club in Invermere with one of the stage builders of the Pagoda!
Join Siyee in the Food & Beverage department as a Blaze Burgers Griller!. From Blaze Burgers to Night Owl Coffee to smoothies and more, Shambhala has plenty of work opportunities for the culinary-inclined. Grillers, prep cooks, dishwashers and cashiers are a vital part of our food and beverage operations. If you have kitchen experience, join us to feed the Farmily!