by Todd Brown
Site Operations Manager, Resource Management Division
Fairfax County Park Authority
VRPS Northern Service Area 2016 Chair
Barb Ziman travels through time. Actually the truth be told, she makes it possible for others to travel back in time and see what life was like during different historic periods. As the Special Event Coordinator with the Resource Management Division at the Fairfax County Park Authority, Barb has organized, coordinated, implemented, evaluated (and whatever other verb you want to throw in) over a hundred special events. From antique car shows to civil war reenactments. From fairs to festivals. From quilt shows to Pirate Fest. She also was part of an event at the Lorton Prison that included one-time only wagon ride tours of the maximum security prison and grounds.
Of course, each event comes with its successes and failures and a great story. She has dealt with angry quilters asking how to show their masterpieces a day after a hurricane came through the park. She has had Civil War reenactors on horseback dodging ruts in the grounds where the car show took place weeks prior. She has smiled and calmed angry parents that felt their kid got the short end of the program stick. She had to relight candles and campfires during rain/snow showers the night of Sully’s Candlelight Tours, all while in period costume. Her 20 years of special event experience has provided many special memories for the FCPA and the public.
Barb created success. Barb’s special events have generated hundreds of thousands of park visitors and special event participants. They have generated hundreds of thousands of dollars in park revenue. Many of her special events have been continuing for decades. New special events are still being created by the area three inches above her contagious smile. Barb knows the tricks of the trade, what works and what certainly does not, and how to keep your horror stories to a minimum.The Northern Service Area has asked Barb to provide a workshop this spring called “Special Events from Soup to Nuts” on Thursday, May 19th from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Frying Pan Farm Park in Herndon, VA. This is the last time we can get a chance to learn from Barb’s knowledge and experience as she is retiring in July. Please visit the VRPS website to register for this workshop. Earlier that same day, the NSA is offering a workshop on "Scout Programming: Planning and Filling" taught by Tammy Schwab with the FCPA. You may not travel back in time, but you will be better prepared for your future programs and events.
|Barb Ziman, Fairfax County Park Authority|