WaterFire Staff Stories: Marguerite Bernier

How long have you worked at WaterFire?

My position here is Bookkeeper / Office Manager.  I have been with WaterFire for 13 years.

What are your favorite events?

My favorite events are the Salute to Veterans and the Christmas events.  For the Veterans fire, it is truly magical when the American flag is suspended over the basin area (with the help of 2 Providence Fire ladder trucks) and taps is being played.  There is not a dry eye in the audience.

What more can anyone ask for – seeing Santa Claus in one of WaterFire’s boats coming down the river to make a grand entrance in the basin area?  A large cup of Hot chocolate or hot apple cider is a must at this event.

What is something that most people might not know about WaterFire that you think is important?

I don’t think that people are aware of the amount of planning, changes, last-minute changes, set up & take down time it takes to put on an event.  Did I mention the miles of electrical cord that it takes just to bring power to all the craft & food vendors?

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

The first place I headed to, once the okay was given, was to the hairdresser. After many attempts to trim my hair, it felt like a luxury to have it professionally cut.

Last month I dined out at the Charlestown Rathskeller in beautiful South County.  Seated outside under the massive trees, it was truly an enjoyable evening – great company, great food along with the wonders of the great wooded outdoors.

What is a hidden gem in our community that you think people should know about?

For hidden gems – Jamestown – this is not so hidden, however, this was truly a gem of a place to spend the evening.  Everyone always travels to Newport, bypassing Jamestown. Dined on the deck, ate some ice cream while watching the sailboats in the bay with the beautiful sunset. There were very few people there – walked along the coast and then along Main Street. On one of the side streets, in a church parking, a band was setting up to play for anyone who strolled by.  It was truly a perfect night

The American Flag flying over Waterplace Basin. Photograph by Max Dowgiallo.
The American Flag flying over Waterplace Basin. Photograph by Max Dowgiallo.

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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