Labor Day: When Havasu Goes To Work
Holidays are work days for many Lake Havasu City wage-earners whose businesses cater to tourists.
Line Zapf is a housekeeping supervisor at London Bridge Resort where she has worked since January 2014. “I always work on holidays, and I’ve never called in sick.”
Zapf (pronounced “zaf”) has a smile that could light the London Bridge and a work ethic that could build it. “Cleaning is my passion. I pretty much use my passion for here at work. I don’t think I’m OCD,” she said with a laugh. “I’m just an organized person. I like everything organized and cleaned.”
Her work speaks for itself. Promoted within seven months from a housekeeper to a supervisor, Zapf learned to use the computer, inspect rooms and how to delegate staff. Honored as “Team Member of the Year 2015,” she received an all-expense-paid trip to New York.
Executive Housekeeper Myra Czarneski praised Zapf. “My staff and I love Line’s contagious and positive attitude! The words she lives by are, ‘This is what we were hired to do. We are here for our guests.’”
Zapf, who is a married mother of two, walks more than 10,000 steps a day inspecting rooms. She said the Resort is always packed, so cleaning its 122 rooms keeps the 14 housekeepers busy.
“We like to solve the guests’ wants and needs. It’s a 100 percent commitment,” she said. “The staff works hard and makes it a point to smile at guests, even though things are going on in their personal lives. Everyone is approachable, especially our big boss.”
The “big boss” is Vice President and General Manager Cal Sheehy. “Line is a team player who is always available to meet and exceed our guests’ needs,” he said. “She always has a smile on her face and treats guests with care and kindness.” Sheehy should know. He started working for the resort at the young age of 16 — as a housekeeper.
Labor Day is also just another day at the office for Mark Zieff, except that his office is at Beach Shack Rentals. His work is renting boats, kayaks and jet skis in front of a panoramic view of Lake Havasu framed by distant mountains. Somebody’s got to do it, right?
Zieff works Monday through Friday from 8-12 p.m., opening the Beach Shack, cleaning and prepping the equipment, and then showing customers how to operate the watercraft. The enthusiasm in his voice and the speed of his steps reflect a passion for recreation and how it can bring families together.
The former Chicago salesman will be at his post at the Shack on Labor Day and expects it will be, exciting, fun and encouraging to see people enjoying our beautiful weather as they embark on a family fun day.
“I know many people are experiencing Havasu for the first time when they rent equipment,” he said. “I want to help them have an event they can appreciate and walk away from with a positive feeling.”
He likes seeing people in a good mood. “It’s not the money that motivates me, it’s the happiness we all share when working together for the benefit of others.”
“I also volunteer for the Parks and Rec Advisory Board,” Zieff said. “I watch things, make recommendations and help implement my ideas.” He complimented Parks and Recreation Manager Mike Keane, and Public Works Manager Mark Clark for their prompt follow up on the ideas suggested by the board.
A native of Colorado, Zieff liked the warm winter weather in Havasu and remembered the advice of his uncle who said he should move to a tourist town because the people around you are always happy.
Tourists are Kathy Niemeyer’s specialty. She works Thursdays and Sundays at the Visitor’s Center, a job she has held for the last six years, giving out information and answering questions. When her shift falls on a holiday, it’s a typical day at work. She must enjoy it—she works for free.
“If you like talking to people,” Niemeyer said. “This is easy.”
When Niemeyer makes eye contact and offers to help, it is clear from her tone and facial expression, she means it. She can answer almost any question about the city, and if she doesn’t know an answer, she’ll find it.
“You don’t know what it is you need to know until somebody asks the question,” she explained. “At first, I was reluctant because I didn’t think I knew enough to answer all the questions visitors might have—you learn from the people you work with.”
The question she gets the most is, “Where is the bathroom?”
According to Director of Visitor Services Jan Kassies, Kathy is reliable and loves to check to make sure everything is in the right place. “Working in the Visitor’s Center is for people who love people,” he said. “You meet people from all over the world.”
The Visitor’s Center is open seven days a week from 9 to 5. It only closes for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. More workers are needed, especially those who live in the city year-round. To inquire, please call Jan Kassies at 928-208-1462.
Line Zapf, Mark Zieff and Kathy Niemeyer are diverse, yet they have a few traits in common—they love people, they’re passionate about their work and they don’t mind working on holidays.