Getty Center: A Typical Day… At the Zoo?

When asked what a typical day looks like here at the Getty events department, I’m not really sure how to answer. There are some days where I work the regular 9am-5pm schedule, with meetings and a lunch break, that we’ve all experienced (or at least heard of, thanks to the inimitable Dolly Parton). However, last week my “typical day” looked like hopping in a lyft with some of my coworkers and heading to the Los Angeles Zoo!


There is a loose organization of LA-area museum events planners that meets a few times a year, and different museums take turns hosting it. Luckily for me, this time it was the Zoo’s turn. It was a boiling hot day and we were very pleased to learn when we got there that our meeting was going to be indoors. We hopped on the long Zoo golf carts and went to a staff building where we ate a lovely lunch and discussed different problems and issues in the LA museum event planning world. It was fascinating to hear the perspectives of people from the events departments at different museums, and where they differ from the Getty. For example, at the Getty Center, our events team has many internal clients, not just the Museum, so we rely less on external clients, and don’t do any personal events at all, like weddings or birthdays. Many smaller museums, however, frequently rent their space for celebrations such as these.


After our dining and discussion, we all headed out for a tour of the Zoo’s event spaces— and so also, the animals. We passed by the outdoor room where sloths and parrots can be brought by for birthday parties, the terrace where elephants can watch your cocktail party, and the path past the splashing sea lions and the chattering monkeys. We even saw some flamingos!


After some people had gotten ice cream and we were all close to melting in the heat, we went back to our air-conditioned office to dream about elephants… I mean, plan more events!