Florida Girl Takes on DC, Y’all! – Part 2

This post is part of a series written by zcomm interns. Be sure to check back each week for their take on the latest in the public relations industry. This week, Claire discusses her internship at zcomm and her experience in DC. 

Remember that VH1 show “Best Week Ever,” where comedians would rehash the week’s happenings and at the end of each episode they would name which celebrity or group had – you guessed it – the best week ever? According to Google, the show ended in 2009, but if it were still airing, I am pretty sure my experiences last week would make me a serious contender for Best Week Ever status.

By day, I was coming in to zcomm early to pitch an upcoming satellite media tour to morning news producers and doing some research to help pull together new business proposals. By night, I was gearing up for Wednesday’s Congressional Women’s Softball Game – attending volunteer orientations, quizzing myself on the Congressional Members’ names, faces and states on home-made flashcards (no, I am not kidding), and reaching out to local online media outlets to try to help promote the event.

When I originally found out that each volunteer was asked to sell at least 10 tickets to the game, I was a little worried because I don’t have a very big network here in DC…then I realized that while I don’t know people, I do know PR. In no time, I was contacting local outlets and getting the event on weekly activity blogs and their corresponding social media, like “365 Things to do in DC.”

When Wednesday finally arrived, I felt like a kid on Christmas. I left zcomm early to head over to Debbie Wasserman-Schultz’s office to make signs with her interns and helped the staff distribute Member uniforms, and then hustled to the field for set-up.

Everyone staffing the event rose to the occasion, working together and falling in where they were needed to make the event a success. Despite the 97-degree weather, a lot of fun was had by all. It was so exciting to see the faces I had been studying all week out there on the field, and Nancy Pelosi and John Boehner even made a special guest appearance!

I must admit, being in the presence of all of these smart, dynamic female leaders was a little intimidating, but all of the Members were extremely down-to-earth and very approachable. Even though the women of Congress lost to the “Bad News Babes” of the Capitol Hill Press Corps, members of each team met the volunteers for some post-game pizza and beer at the Ugly Mug. It was a very unique opportunity to visit with these ladies in such a casual setting – I briefly connected with Rep. Wasserman-Schultz and Kirsten Gillibrand, the Congresswoman from New York who occupies Hillary Clinton’s old Senate seat (cool!), and was able to have a great conversation with Kathy Castor, a Representative from Florida and fellow FSU alum.

It was such an incredible day, and through ticket sales, donations and concessions, we were able to raise over $50,000 for the Young Survival Coalition (watch DWS’s announcement on the House floor here)!

As if my week couldn’t have gotten any more awesome, I decided to go on an impromptu weekend trip to New York City to meet up with friends from college! It was surprisingly simple – just hopped on the bus down the street after work on Friday and was deposited in Bryant Park four short hours later. It was a wonderful weekend of friends, food, drinks and dancing, and the beautiful weather was tailor-made for a relaxing Saturday in Central Park. I even got to check out Sunday’s Pride Parade before heading back to Washington. The parade fell on the first anniversary of New York passing its marriage equality law and featured Cyndi Lauper as the Grand Marshall, so you can just imagine the energy in the crowd.

After a much-needed good night’s sleep, I am back at zcomm and looking forward to my next adventure… Fourth of July in the nation’s Capital!

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