La Crosse County Historical Society is launching a new program for the training and development of interpretive guides to work as volunteers in our historic house museum, Hixon House, and to give guided tours on buses such as the historic trolley, cruise boat tours, and other private tour companies.
Guide School will be fun, challenging, and educational for adults and older students. Enrollees will learn about the history of our region and learn to represent LCHS and La Crosse in a professional manner, as well as get tips and advice on how to present an engaging narrative. Giving a tour is essentially story-telling, and it’s the way that we as humans most easily learn.
Anyone who wishes to be an LCHS Interpretive Guide will be expected to graduate from Guide School. Our presenters and teachers are museum professionals and experienced guides. They will lead this process.
Enrollees to Guide School will choose one of two tracks, docent or tour guide. Museum guides who lead interpretive tours at Hixon House are called docents. Historical Society docents enjoy learning about the social and cultural history of La Crosse in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Tour guidesserve as interpretive guides on the Historic Trolley tour, and tour buses. Their focus is local history, but they also give information about local life, and current events.
The course will begin on June 1, with the expectation that graduates will be ready to start giving tours in either Hixon House or on buses by the middle of July.
The main requirements are an interest in local history, a willingness to learn, and a valid Covid-19 vaccination.
Every summer and fall hundreds of people come to La Crosse, visit Historic Hixon House Museum, and take bus or trolley tours of the city. You can be an ambassador for your home town and help them appreciate the rich history of our county.
The LCHS Guide School is going to be something new: a challenge and an opportunity to learn and grow. It’s for people who want to learn about La Crosse’s history and have fun sharing it with visitors to our region. We welcome you to look at the class schedule on our website, at lchshistory.org, and then call the office to sign up. Applications for acceptance to Guide School will be accepted through June 1. For more information call LCHS at 608-782-1980.