What Are You Doing This Weekend?
By Paul B. MacIntyre
A phrase that is used, on a daily basis, in just about every workplace in America. It’s a simple relatively harmless question, “What are you doing this weekend?”
Back in the early eighties, I was asked that very question by a coworker. Not thinking anything of it, I quickly responded that I had no plans. My coworker, John, then asked me if I like old cars. “Yes” I answered, taking the bait, hook, line and sinker. John proceeded to tell me about this wonderful car event that was taking place, in Schenley Park, that weekend which was being held for charity and would be a lot of fun. I told him that I would enjoy coming along and helping out.
On my way into Schenley Park, I passed a row of antique automobiles that were proudly displayed at the park entrance. Further up the road, near Phipps Conservatory, I found a row of race cars from years gone by. The smell of carbon, the sound of engines running and tires squealing filled the air. I was hooked.
Several years later, I found myself more and more involved with the Grand Prix. We watched it grow from a “weekend” event into an entire race week. Now we are a 10-day event covering three weekends. As an event grows, the need for people increases. I remember thinking about how much there was to do and how short-staffed we were.
My involvement in the event came full circle. I turned to my friend Mark, a waiter at the time, and asked the very same question that was asked of me. What are you doing this weekend? Thankfully, Mark had no plans. He showed up and brought his friend Pete along. That was in the early nineties Pete has been with us since then, and ended up becoming the Best Man, when I got married. These days, Pete’s teenaged daughters’ volunteer and my wife Sue serves on the PVGP Executive Committee. All from the simple question, “What are you doing this weekend?”
Over the years, I have told this story to countless other volunteers. Literally, hundreds of them have responded that they were asked the very same question. Corner workers from Washington DC, merchandise salespeople, car owners, the list goes on. It is a good thing that none of us had plans.
The next time that someone asks you that harmless question, be careful. You just might have the time of your life.
Note: “Paul and Sue MacIntyre embody the true spirit of volunteerism and of the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix. They both work year-round to plan for the event. They are two of the first people I met when I joined the organization in 2004. Paul is in charge of the Kick-Off Rallye and is helped by his wife Sue and the above-mentioned Pete. Sue has served on the PVGP Executive Committee since 2008 and is in charge of all merchandise with Paul is at her side for the entire Race Week helping with the huge task of managing merchandise and sales. They are both key members of the PVGP’s Operating Committee and also help with social media and just about everything else.” There are countless people like Paul and Sue that make up the Grand Prix – please let us know if you would like to get involved. – Dan DelBianco PVGP Executive Director