Wanted: History Buffs with Shoes Made for Walkin’

4-72-PalaceWalkingTour2012The Historical Downtown Walking Tours led by museum-trained guides have grown into a popular pastime among locals and tourists alike. This year’s tours will run from April 14 through Oct. 11. To boost the ranks of volunteer guides, the New Mexico History Museum and Los Compadres del Palacio, a support group of the Museum of New Mexico Foundation, are inaugurating a special recruitment and training opportunity.

You could be just the person we’re looking for. Do you possess a deep love of Santa Fe and knowledge of New Mexico history? Enjoy spending time outdoors and meeting people from all over the world? This could be your perfect niche.

Learn more at a special event on Tuesday March 4. At 9:30 am in the museum’s auditorium, noted Santa Fe archaeologist Cordelia (Dedie) Thomas Snow will use historical photographs to present a history of Santa Fe’s storied downtown core. Afterward, Los Compadres will host a coffee in the Meem Community Room where you can ask all the questions you have about the program. The event is free; no reservations are required.

Peter Sinclaire, a longtime tour guide and New Mexico history instructor at Santa Fe Community College, will lead the tour-guide training with combinations of classroom sessions and boots-on-the-sidewalk work:

  • 3–5 pm, March 13 and 20. (A makeup session will be offered 1–5 pm, March 29.)
  • 10 am to noon, March 29.

New guides will pair up with veterans before launching their own tours. Guides are asked to provide at least six tours—or as many more as their “soles” desire.

The tours are offered Monday–Saturday and begin at 10:15 in front of the Blue Gate just south of the New Mexico History Museum’s main entrance at 113 Lincoln Avenue. Each tour lasts about 2 hours and features a leisurely pace with plenty of opportunities to ask questions about the people and events that have made Santa Fe a world-class tourist destination. Tours cost $10; children 16 and under are free when accompanied by an adult. Museum guides do not accept tips.

Last year’s guides gave 153 tours to 1,350 adults, 50 children, and one dog—and raised $14,000 for museum programs. Get a taste of one by clicking here.