WaterFire Staff Stories: Kim Zoppo

What do you do at WaterFire?

Hi:) My name is Kim Zoppo and I have been working at WaterFire since May of 2019. I currently work on the Development Team and manage the WaterFire Arts Center. I transitioned into this role when COVID hit, and when our beloved WaterFires downtown were not going to be possible. We had to pivot our responsibilities and focus our energy on our Art Center and try to keep our organization going. I’m very proud to be working at WaterFire and I’m very excited to be part of this team and take on this new venture!!  Prior to this role, I was the Volunteer Coordinator.

What is something that people might not know about WaterFire that you think they should?

First, we have the most incredible heartfelt dedicated volunteers around!  It takes a village to put on a WaterFire downtown, and we couldn’t get this done without their help. Even now under the current COVID conditions, we can count on their sense of community and help us by volunteering at our beautiful Arts Center and outdoor events.

Second, I would love for you to know how our WaterFire Arts Center evolved. In 1929, it was built for the US Rubber Company, a multipurpose manufacturing company, and rebuilt to the beautiful building that it is today. We have a video series that you can watch that walks you through the entire process. You can take a look at that here: Building our Future: The Story of the WaterFire Arts Center on Vimeo  It is really fascinating!

What was the first place you visited after the Rhode Island economy began to reopen?

I went to The Charlestown Rathskeller. They have amazing food and drinks as well as an incredible outdoor space with a huge firepit and stage to hear live music. It is literally located in the middle of nowhere but it doesn’t disappoint!

What hidden gem in our community do you think people should know about?

It may sound redundant – hands-down The WaterFire Arts Center. Please contact me if you would like to earn more on how you can have the event of your dreams in our amazing unique space! Big or small, we will find the right fit for you!

Dream Orbs in the Waterplace Park Basin at WaterFire. Photograph by Armin Kososki.
Dream Orbs in the Waterplace Park Basin at WaterFire. Photograph by Armin Kososki.

About WaterFire Staff Stories

Each week we will bring you stories of WaterFire from the perspective of our staff members. This series will feature short videos produced by each team member and they will be sharing stories and facts about our organization as well as their recommendations for places and activities around Rhode Island that you can enjoy.

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For 25 years WaterFire has been transforming place and building community in downtown Providence with impacts that reach into every corner of Rhode Island. Unfortunately, we’ve had to indefinitely postpone the WaterFire season, losing the earned revenue on which our work depends. We need your help—now more than ever—to get us through this financial crisis.

About the author

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I've worked at WaterFire since 2003. For the first 9 years of my career here I worked in the Production Shop learning all of the details that go into the physical production of the event. I have recently transitioned to role of managing WaterFire's social media and web presence. I find it very rewarding working to increase engagement with our supporters both locally and globally.

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