Yesterday we had the 2017 NPS Youth Summit at Anacostia Park! It was such an amazing moment seeing everything my coworkers and I have been planing over the past few months come together. Youth programs from different parks in the region come to Anacostia and was able to meet one another and to kick off their summer program. There were different activities we had set up like our photo mosaic station, living history, roller skating, the ability to speak to different people who work in the park service, bird watching, and seeing all the cool animals and doing a hands on activity at the Aquatic Center.
I worked at the photo mosaic station, where we were able to capture what they hoped to accomplish from their programs. We also had a special guest, Mr. Hoots, who is an owl that came for only a few photos! I didn’t get a photo with Mr. Hoots but I’m happy others did. To break the ice with all the youth, we played some games like duck duck goose, kitty want’s a corner, ninja, and rock paper scissors tournament! It did surprise me the ages of everyone, we had a few who were in high school, just going into college and those who finished college and going to graduate school.
On Monday, June 26th we were all ready to go for the summit. We had the food, t-shirts, water bottles, and activities all ready to go, until we were notified that a larger group was coming and we did not have enough food, t-shirts, or water bottles! Being an event planner, we had to come up with a way to adjust for the larger crowds of people coming. We pushed it into gear and we were able in 2 hours, order 125 extra shirts (that were going to be printed and shipped by that Wednesday) and ordered more food. I think that is why I love being an event planner, I like that rush of needing to get things done and feeling accomplished.
Now it’s time to plan for the Spot Light Challenge that will be in August! I have also been planning events that will be held during Latino Conservation Week here in the Region. We have a few events that are in the works and I am very excited to be part of. I am also working one day a week at the REI Adventure Station! I’m helping visitors with questions about the parks and what they would like to do in them. I also get questions like, “where’s the bathroom” or “where’s the fitting room” and “can you try this coat on…you look like you are the same size as my girlfriend.” I will also be helping staff the Adventure Station by asking those who have signed up to be volunteers. We have a training for them to go to before they can officially be a volunteer there. My coworker and I have also been thinking of events that could be held there during LCW and in general.
Overall I have been very busy and will continue to be! I have learned so much about REI and about planning events. I have also planned a trip with some coworkers to go to Assateague, which I am very excited about!