What do you enjoy about being a tour guide?

I love sharing this city with travelers from all over the world. There’s a certain excitement in meeting people I would never encounter in any other way. They come on my tour and for those few hours become like family. 

It’s a true pleasure bringing people into the city and showing them things they would never see if they were just wandering on their own. It is especially exciting when it’s their first time visiting. I get brought back to those early moments when I arrived in NYC and began to make this my home.

What brought you to New York?

Fate, really. There’s talk of me being in the highchair in the small Wisconsin town I grew up in saying, “What are we doing? We have to get back to New York.” Somehow, I knew of New York before I knew of New York.

And 15 years ago I finally made it. And it’s been home ever since. This is where I’ve found my people, my cats, my craft for writing, and my love for the life I’ve built here. New York is truly a place where anyone can arrive and make their way. It’s a blank canvas and the paint. There’s no other place I make sense and no other place I’d rather be.

What brought you to tour guiding?

After graduating from NYU with my MFA in playwriting I was searching for the ideal survival job as I pursued my artistic life. And then I heard that a friend’s husband was a tour guide. I inquired if that was actually a real job. It seemed too magical to be true. 

I had always been know as one of the few people who never got lost in the West Village. I would go for walks with friends and point out the historic buildings and spots they hadn’t heard of. It came naturally to me.

In guiding I’ve found the perfect role to combine all my skills, personality, and craft for storytelling. The streets of New York City have become my theater and I get to bring people into the play and performance that is here every day. It’s truly a joy being a tour guide.

What is your favorite place in the city to share with visitors?

Bowling Green Park tops my list. There’s something about Lower Manhattan that feels like the heart of New York. It’s our oldest park with its original iron fence from 1733. It is the beginning of the Revolutionary War. I love sharing the story of the toppling of the statue of King George and the secret of the fence posts. It’s a calming place with a history of rebellion. To me, that’s New York City.

What makes a great tour?

The guests. A great tour is filled with curious visitors who are ready to experience something unexpected. I’m a storyteller. It’s that other person that brings what I do to life. Engaging with the city through their wonder ignites a tour.

What is your favorite restaurant in NYC?

Pastis. No question. A French Brasserie feels very New York to me. And this one is the best.

And because I’m rebellious I’m also going to name more because in a city so diverse and eclectic I can’t have just one favorite. Joe Allen’s for pre or post-theater. John’s of Bleaker Street for the iconic coal fire New York pizza. And Brooklyn Bagel, which is strangely in Chelsea not Brooklyn, for the perfect boiled NYC classic.

What neighborhood do you live in?

Hamilton Heights. Uptown where Alexander Hamilton’s farm once stood. I’m a few blocks from his house. Which I highly recommend visiting. It’s a part of Harlem and on the west side right along the Hudson River.

What would you recommend a visitor to New York City do while in town?

See a show. Broadway or off-Broadway or stand-up at the Comedy Cellar. This city has so much talent I encourage everyone to experience at least a bit of it.

Visit Times Square to at least say you’ve done it. It’s unlike anything else on Earth. You can see its lights from outer space. And then head into the neighborhoods. Greenwich Village, SoHo, Chinatown, even the Upper West Side. Experience how varied NYC is.

Go to Central Park. Head out into the harbor and see the Statue of Liberty. And take some tours. I recommend Metropolis Tours. I hear they’re great!

Reach Out

Follow Us