News & Press: Capital Guide Online

Capital Guide Online July 2020

Thursday, July 2, 2020  
Posted by: Jackie Frend

July, 2020

In this issue...

  • Message from the President
  • Great Guild Road Trip – FDR’s Home and Museum on July 1
  • Inside Petersen House on July 2
  • Great Guild Road Trip – Route 66 on July 8
  • Architectural Refinement at Washington National Cathedral on July 15
  • Improv for Tour Guides (Two Sessions – July 16 and 18)
  • Member Meeting on July 21
  • Great Guild Road Trip – Johnstown, Pennsylvania on July 22
  • Book Group on July 24
  • Great Guild Road Trip – Riverside, California on July 29
  • Guild Gives Back on August 15
  • Mentors Needed for New Members
  • Welcome New Members

Welcome back to the Capital Guide Online!

This was not the tour season any of us ever imagined, and we encountered many problems that hit us almost overnight.But our members are resilient and so many of you stepped up to the challenge by offering help, guidance, advice, time, and talent to get us through a very difficult time in the history of the Guild.

Starting with the Board members, everyone pitched in, meeting virtually numerous times since mid-March to ensure our organization continued to serve our membership in these uncertain times. From the task force on COVID-19 response work, to education and training virtual events, the unique “tell me something I don’t know” (TMSIDK), informational events, and most recently, the Teachable Moment for Guild Members, the Board never stopped their volunteer work. In addition, many of our Guild members who are not on the Board volunteered by stepping forward to share their knowledge through virtual tours. And, if there is a bright side to any of this, our out-of-town members finally have a way to connect with the Guild through participating in our virtual events and even volunteering by hosting their own virtual tours for us.

To date, over 3,000 registrations have been recorded for 52 virtual events! If you missed a tour or other event, you can always view a recording by logging into our website, selecting the dropdown menu “For Members,” and clicking “Watch Videos of Past Guild Events.”

In the spirit of volunteerism, I thank each and every one of you for your dedication and commitment to our Guild!


Stay healthy and safe.

Jackie Frend
Guild President

FDR's Home in Hyde Park on July 1

Great Guild Road Trip –
FDR’s Home in Hyde Park

Date:Wednesday, July 1
Time:2 – 3 p.m.
Comfort of your own home

Join Guild member Julie Adkins on a tour beyond DC. We all take our groups to the FDR Memorial and talk about its significance and his presidency, but let’s go back further and look at how his upbringing and his love for where he lived influenced his life by virtually visiting FDR's home and Presidential Museum in Hyde Park, New York, with a little Camp David thrown in.

Register online. For more information contact Christen Eliasonor Sandra Moore, Training Committee co-chairs.

Inside Peterson House on July 2

Event: Inside Petersen House
Date:July 2
Time: 1 p.m.
Place: Comfort of your own home

Join Ford’s Theatre Associate Director of Museum Education Jake Flack for a in-depth virtual visit to Petersen House. Meet the people who lived at Petersen House. Learn how it became a national historic site and museum.


Register online. For more information contact Pat Abler.

Great Guild Road Trip -- Route 66 on July 8

Event:Great Guild Road Trip –

Route 66

Date: Wednesday, July 8

Time:1 – 2 p.m.

Place:Comfort of your own home

Join Guild member Stephen Cirello as he takes us on a road trip along Route 66 often referred to as the “Main Street of America.” We will explore a bygone era of rural lands, glowing neon, iconic motels, Cadillacs, and bikers! The trip will end in Santa Monica with a brief tour of that city and its famous pier.


Register online. For more information contact Christen EliasonorSandra Moore, Training Committee co-chairs.


Cathedral Design on July 15

Event: Architectural Refinement at National Cathedral

Date:July 15

Time:1 p.m.

Place: Comfort of your own home

The ancient Gothic cathedrals have twists and bends throughout. Was that intentional? Washington National Cathedral has twists and bends throughout. That was definitely intentional. Join Washington National Cathedral docent Andy Bittner in a discussion on the question of intentional architectural refinement in Gothic architecture and a close look at some of the less noticeable twists and bends you find in the cathedral.


Register online. For more information contact Pat Abler.

Improv for Tour Guides (two sessions)

Session 1

Date:Thursday, July 16

Time:2 – 3:30 p.m.

Place: Comfort of your own home

Session 2

Date:Saturday, July 18

Time: 7 – 8:30 p.m.

Place:Comfort of your own home


IMPORTANT: These sessions are identical. Please register for only one of them. Each session is limited to 20 participants.


Improv for Tour Guides! Come to either of these one-hour, interactive, DC-focused sessions to learn how improvisational comedy techniques can help a guide listen better, engage clients, and get laughs. You’ll learn five games/exercises that can be played while on the bus, standing in line, or otherwise going with the flow.


Christen Eliason and Sandra Moore

Training Committee co-chairs


Training Team: Gary Kushnier, Tim Scanlon, Ella Schiralli, and Brenda Turner


Member Meeting on July 21

Event: Member Meeting
Date: July 21
Time: 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Place: Comfort of your own home

This GoToMeeting videoconference will include:

  • Anne-Louise Colgan,Director of Public Education, and Ellie Quinlan, Manager of Public Visitor Programs, United States Institute of Peace
    Topic: “Update on Public Engagement at the U.S. Institute of Peace”

  • Beverley Swaim-Staley, President and CEO, and Kevin Forma, 2nd Century Program Manager, Union Station Expansion Project
    Topic: Union Station Expansion Project Update
  • Mary Ellen Pauli from WorldStrides will talk about guidelines for fall group travel.


For further information contact Maria Limarzi.


Guild Road Trip to Johnstown on July 22

Great Guild Road Trip – Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Wednesday, July 22
1 – 2 p.m.
Comfort of your own home

Join Guild member Jacque Smith on a tour of Johnstown, Pennsylvania – a city of steel, floods, hockey, and hard-working people that was once a shining example of prosperity. However, with the loss of steel, the city went through a great darkness. Today, the city is fighting its way back and provides the visitor with any number of cultural, educational, and recreational activities.

Register online. For more information contact Christen EliasonorSandra Moore, Training Committee co-chairs.

Book Group on July 24

Event: Guild Book Group
Friday, July 24
11:30 am
Comfort of your home

Our book is “Suffragists in Washington, DC: The 1913 Parade and the Fight for the Vote “by Rebecca Boggs Roberts. A vivid narrative of the heroic struggle of Alice Paul and the National Woman's Party as they worked to earn the vote, framed by the demonstration known as The Great Suffrage Parade. 160 pp. Ms Roberts spoke to the Guild a few years ago.

Register online. For further information contactDavid Shaw.

Guild Road Trip to Riverside on July 29

Event: Great Guild Road Trip – Riverside, California
Date: Wednesday, July 29
Time: 1 – 2 p.m.
Comfort of your own home

Join Guild member Jennifer Kolb on a virtual tour of beautiful Riverside, California, the City of Arts and Innovation! Jennifer will showcase the city's rich history in the citrus industry, its elegant historic buildings and murals, and its revitalized downtown area with restaurants and shops.

Register online. For more information contact Christen Eliason orSandra Moore, Training Committee co-chairs.

Washing Vietnam Wall on August 15

Event:Guild Gives Back
Saturday, August 15
6:30 - 8:00 am
Vietnam Wall

Over the last five years the Guild has established a tradition of assisting the National Park Service through a "Guild Gives Back" event in the summer. Guild members have washed the Korean Memorial wall three times, and have washed the Vietnam Memorial wall twice. The Guild is on the NPS work schedule for August 15, but there may be a change due to covid-19 health and safety considerations. We will inform members as soon as possible if we hear about a cancellation, or if the event is rescheduled.

This year our volunteers will need to wear cloth masks or face shields or other personal protection device, and follow social distancing guidelines. With these precautions Guild members who choose to participate can have the satisfaction of public service and enjoy the camaraderie of fellow guides while adhering to safety guidelines.

For further information contact Maribeth Oakes.

Mentors Needed for New Members

The Guild’s Mentor Program is in need of mentors to be paired with new members. Many of you have had mentors as a “go-to” for questions and now is an opportunity to pay it forward.

Also, there are members who are on the current Mentors roster that may wish to be deleted. This is an opportunity to ask to be removed. If you’d like to be added or deleted so that the roster can be updated, please contact co-coordinators Bill Harris or Brien McNamara.

Welcome New Members

Christina Duemler: Christina is a native German speaker who moved to the DC area in 2010. A former radio and television reporter, she now acts as tour guide and consultant to international travelers through her company, Washington Behind the Scenes (

Bryce Hill:
An ITMI graduate who lives in Pennsylvania, Bryce has been a tour professional for 14 years. Bringing meeting event management expertise to his work with tours, Bryce’s broad experience as a guide and tour director includes domestic tours across the United States and international tours that include destinations in Europe, the Caribbean, and Southeast Asia.

Christine Phillips:
Christine has a master’s degree in architecture with a concentration in conservation/preservation and minor in art studies. She is a docent at the Washington National Cathedral and has spent the past nine years directing a local franchise of a national homeschool education organization. She worked for more than five years in architectural offices, including firms in Washington, DC who are recognized for historic preservation.

Kathy Rawlings:
Kathy lives in Frederick, MD, and graduated from ITMI last year. In 2019, she worked for several student tour operators and conducted several adult tours. Prior to beginning her tour guiding career, Kathy was a music teacher for 30 years (having a master's degree in music education) and also worked in the hospitality industry as a general manager, servicer, and bartender. She also owns her own travel agency, K Travels, LLC.

Joe Ruppert:
Joe attended the Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD; earned his MS at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA; and his MA at the Naval War College in Newport, RI. He chose tour guiding as a second career and was a student of Maricar Donato. Leading student tours since 2017, Joe also has experience in conducting bus, limo, and walking tours for groups and individuals.

Jacqueline "Jacque" Smith:
Jacque is based in the Pittsburgh, PA, area. She graduated from ITMI in 2019. She currently works for several student tour operators. Jacque also owns her own tour company, Wander and Joy Adventures. She has a master's degree in library media management and has recently worked as a library resource coordinator

Krista Stark:
Krista is a graduate of the International Guide Academy in Denver, CO. She has an MA in political science with an international affairs emphasis from Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI. Her experience includes being a federal governmental affairs representative for American Airlines and Orbitz and a Capitol Hill tour guide while serving on Congressional staff.

Stephen Sullivan:
Stephen is based in Philadelphia, PA. He graduated from ITMI in 2016. He is a member of the Assn of Philadelphia Tour Guides. He has worked for both student and adult tour operators conducting tours along the eastern seaboard. He has traveled extensively abroad and owns his own travel agency, Mainline Cruise Planners.

Membership co-chairs: Debra Wiley and Barbara Longnecker

Contact Information

Jackie Frend (President)

Corky Rainey (1st V.P.)
Maria Limarzi (2nd V. P.)
W. Bart Smith (Treasurer)
Mary Thorne (Secretary)
Anna Geer (Affiliate Rep)
John Days (Guild Guide Rep)

Russ Norfleet (Admin & Ethics)
Shannon Mikush (Certified Master Guide)
Jim Carr (Certified Master Guide)
Kelvin Carter (Communications)
Ellen Malasky (Gov’t & Tourism)
Maribeth Oakes (Gov't & Tourism)
Chris Bauer (Education)
Pat Abler (Education)
Debra Wiley (Membership)
Barbara Longnecker (Membership)
Christen Eliason (Training)
Sandra Moore (Training)

Claudia Henderson Smith (Capital Guide editor)
Shirley Timashev (Capital Guide publisher)
Bill Harris (Mentor/ Mentee program)
Brien McNamara (Mentor/ Mentee program)
Heidi Watson (Guild Assessment administrator)
Bette Runck (Guild Assessment administrator)
Zee Mostofi (Foreign Language testing)
Mary Beth Lane (Cathedral Training coordinator)
Ruth Roberts (Community Outreach)
Tony Spadafora (writer)
JP Nguyen (Facebook moderator)
Kaitlin Calogera (Twitter moderator)
Jeff Ghannam (Twitter moderator)

Tammy Belden (Guild Administrator and Assistant Treasurer)

The Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington D.C.

For over 30 years our certified guides have been providing professionally guided tours of Washington, DC landmarks and attractions.