History Tours and Talks Bring Hands-On Education to Fort Collins Area Residents and Visitors
Northern Colorado residents love being outside. So do tourists who visit the area. Traces of the Past History Tours caters to this experience in providing guided history tours and formal historical presentations in outdoor settings, conjuring for their customers vivid images of a by-gone era in Fort Collins and the surrounding region. Painting those pictures of the past is the goal of the touring business.
Founded in May 2018, co-founder and long-time Fort Collins resident, Mark Serour, knew it would be a daunting task to start a business, but never anticipated the obstacles that have been encountered this year.
“Nothing worth having is easy, as the cliché goes,” Serour explains, “but I believe that what we offer is a unique service, something the community and surrounding region doesn’t have.” The uniqueness is that the tours and talks not only focus on contemporary accounts but are conducted by a professional historian wearing reproduction historic clothing and augmented by the display of original historic objects from the company collection. “Most people are intrigued by a presenter wearing period clothing, says Serour, “and are even more intrigued when they get to look closely at, and on occasion, handle authentic items from the past.”
Since March 2020, Mark and his wife and business partner, Wendy Serour, have had to navigate the everchanging health restrictions of COVID-19 to ‘reimagine’ the business, specifically its services. Since social distancing requirements decreased the number of would-be van customers, the tours-only schedule was revised to offer something new that allowed for ‘maximum occupancy,’ so to speak. Hour-long “Riverside Lantern Talks” were launched in June and continued through August. These special summer presentations featured local and regional subjects not regularly addressed on the tours were very well-received and have become a permanent addition to the company’s offerings.
A Boulder resident who attended one program left an emphatic comment on the company Facebook page that spoke in glowing terms. “The Riverside Lantern Talks were fanfreakingtastic!” the customer shared. “Factual storytelling full of intrigue, education, insight and vivid word imagery! All in a socially distanced beautiful outdoor setting. Highly recommend this engaging series. Owner Mark Serour is a master storyteller!”
Special presentations will be held during the “off-season.” Interested parties are directed to the company website and Facebook page for calendar updates.
Traces of the Past History Tours continues to offer its van tours throughout the year and remains compliant with current state mandates on COVID-19 safety measures, such as van capacity limits to maintain proper social distancing. For tour and program bookings, visit tracesofthepasthistorytours.com.