Meet the tour guide! Bonnie Beaudet

It’s not easy being a tour guide especially in Concord. The first bar to cross is the licensing, which requires an eight-week training on interpreting town history as well as techniques for providing an engaging visitor experience. Tours go on rain or shine, extreme weather events excluded, so tour guides need to be ready for whatever mother nature throws at them. And there are all sorts of personalities who go on tours, so whether it’s the jaded high schooler or the distracted dad, tour guides need to know how to handle all.

We have over 15 certified tour guides in Concord, including Bonnie Beaudet, who has been a tour guide for Concord for six years. She loves taking newcomers to The Old North Bridge and pointing out the Minute Man Statue, created by a young Daniel Chester French. “This site is so significant to the formation of our country,” said Beaudet.

Beaudet hasn’t always been a tour guide; for most of her career, she worked in high tech. But when she left her last professional position, she happened to take a class about Louisa May Alcott, which sparked her interest in the Transcendentalists who lived and gathered in Concord. This  led her to taking a class on Concord History. She began work as a docent at Thoreau Farm, and from there, the Concord Visitor Center.

She gives this advice to anyone coming to Concord to explore the history here:  “Be prepared to do a lot of walking.” And she adds, turn your brain on: “You should also be well rested as there is much to learn and many facets of Concord History beyond the revolutionary war.”

If you’re so inclined, Beaudet advises visitors to do some research and focus in on your main areas of interests and to leave  plenty of time to explore our sites. “Many of our visitors underestimate how much there is to see in Concord. In addition to the historic homes, Walden Pond and historic sites, we have a wonderful museum where you could easily spend half a day, a beautiful library with a Special Collections department, many lovely nature trails and three historic cemeteries. You could spend a few hours visiting many famous residents in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, which is full of surprises in addition to being a beautiful place to walk.”

It’s no wonder that Thoreau called Concord, “most estimable place in all the world.” Beaudet says, “Please come and visit us. We would love to share our love of Concord history with you!”

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