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A Feather in Her Cap

Virginia State Parks Business Manager Ann Henderson Checks One off Her Bucket List

A few months ago, I ran a blog article about the Virginia Wildlife Center's release of a bald eagle at Belle Isle State Park and it turns out, Ann Henderson, Virginia State Parks Central Office Business Manager, captured pictures and a short video of the eagle release. Virginia State Parks are often wildlife rehabilitators' favorite places to release rehabbed wildlife--the parks have great natural habitat and abundant food sources for wildlife that are re-learning the ways of the wild. I love the way the eagle turns its head and looks up at the handler right before the release as if to say, "Thank you!" I can only imagine the rush of wind and the joy the eagle must have felt flying over the treetops.

 Virginia Wildlife Center staff prepare to release the eagle at Belle Isle State Park

Virginia Wildlife Center staff prepares to release the eagle.  Scroll down for video footage of the eagle's first flight to freedom at Belle Isle State Park.

Getting footage like this really makes us feel good about our jobs. Many Virginia State Parks staff members vacation and spend their days off in the state parks. Even if we work under the fluorescent lights in our offices, we all love the outdoors. Stay tuned to our blog page, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook pages for upcoming events and a series of posts about Virginia State Parks' employees' favorite places in the parks. You'll get some inside information on the best photos spots, best trails, family friendly programs, and outdoor tips. 

In addition to our park ranger staff, we have a group of central office staff that help manage field operations. Ann's work in our merchandising department helps support the parks by increasing our revenue. Virginia State Parks gets over half of its operating funds directly from gift shops, camping, cabin, and parking revenue. Ann often helps Virginia State Parks maximize their retail space with ingenious gift shops displays and unique product lines.

If you have an idea for a gift shop item that you think Virginia State Parks should stock, leave a comment for Ann below.

Virginia State Parks' Business Manager Ann Henderson manages the merchandise line at Virginia State Parks

 Virginia State Parks' Business Manager Ann Henderson manages the merchandise lines and gift shop design for all the parks.

Remember late summer is the best time to make your reservations for next year. We allow reservations up to 11 months in advance so take a look at our map of Virginia State Park locations and make your reservations for long weekends, teacher workdays, Spring Break, and early summer 2015. You can make your reservations by calling the Virginia State Parks Customer Service Center at 1-800-933-PARK. Don't forget your camera and your bucket list!

Published: 08/08/2014

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