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Traces of Capitol Hill: Weeks 7 & 8

Welcome to Traces of Capitol Hill, Tracy Parco's weekly blog about her experience being a fall intern for BRAVO!. We love our intern blogs and hope you enjoy following Tracy!

Weeks 7 & 8

October 12 - October 23, 2015

“If I can make it there, I can make it anywhere, // It’s up to you, New York, New York.” –Frank Sinatra

Set the scene on 1920’s New York, New York, as the BRAVO! team descends on the big apple for the highly anticipated event with the New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF). We arrive mid-day on Monday to the beautiful and centrally located New Yorker Hotel (a 1920’s-themed boutique hotel), where we each have our own bedrooms and queen size beds (which I am incredibly grateful for!). After check in, we made our way to the venue—Moynihan Station—conveniently located at the Old Post Office building only a few blocks away. The building is beautiful and has a rustic warehouse appeal that even before being decorated, was somewhat charming to me. Upon arrival, we helped unload boxes full of decorations and tools, among other supplies and then participated in a full staff and volunteer walkthrough of the event. To finish out our first night in the big city, we feasted at an amazing Italian restaurant called Casa Nonna, in which I had to remind my stomach not to expect that much delicious food again any time soon.

Tuesday was my first experience with load-in and day-of event preparation and it was nothing short of chaotic, but it was also, humbling to be apart of, and I was inspired watching the space transform into a stunning gala venue. In a nutshell, Tuesday was: carrying $54,000 pieces of artwork, transporting water to fill centerpieces, unpacking boxes, working registration, meeting amazing scientists and doctors working with stem cells, admiring guests’ outfits, helping with fund-a-need, handing out umbrellas, emptying the water from the centerpieces, among so much more. Tuesday night, I went to bed unable to move a bone in my body, but in complete awe of a wonderful organization working to cure various diseases and illnesses with stem cells and of BRAVO! for putting together such a great event.

Taking some time to enjoy the city before we headed back to D.C., Blair, Madison, and I took Wednesday morning to do a little exploring and grab some authentic New York bagels and black and white cookies. For anyone that doesn’t know me, I’m incapable of leaving NYC without getting a New York bagel first, so that was a primary motivator for getting me out of bed at 6 am.

The remainder of the week blurred by, until Saturday which was Whitman Walker Health’s Walk to End HIV at Freedom Plaza back in Washington D.C. The Walk had over 3,000 people registered and was definitely a unique learning experience for me—I had no idea what it took to execute a 5K walk/run (especially in the country’s capital). The preparation, planning, and time that goes into a successful event, specifically with the large magnitude of the Walk, is incredible. Overall, I think BRAVO! and WWH put together an event in which everyone enjoyed themselves, while raising funds and awareness for an important cause.

As the lights go out on this past week, I think the BRAVO! team definitely embodied true New Yorkers with our lack of sleep, but we pulled off some genuinely memorable events and I’m excited to see how the rest of my time here at BRAVO! plays out.

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