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Tour Guides at Lakewood Make Each Tour Unique

ToursThere is always something new to discover on a Lakewood walking or trolley tour because each tour guide brings a unique, personal perspective to the guided sixty- to ninety-minute tours. Each volunteer Lakewood tour guide shares the same foundational knowledge, gained from an in-depth training class, covering Lakewood’s history, architecture, notable residents and local history. From there, guides enhance the tours with details they find most interesting, such as Lakewood’s architecture, the symbolism of monuments, or our Level 2 arboretum accreditation.

Fascinated by life stories
Mary McGreevy’s lifelong fascination with obituaries began in her childhood when her mother wrote them for their local Sioux Falls, South Dakota newspaper. McGreevy’s unique experience as a collector of interesting obituaries, which she shares on her popular TikTok channel, @TipsfromDeadPeople, allows her to include insights into the lives of lesser-known individuals memorialized at Lakewood.

One of McGreevy’s must-see monuments is Showmen’s Rest in Section 28, a shared memorial honoring circus performers, ride operators, and those who managed summer fairs. McGreevy highlights how Showmen’s Rest pays tribute to people who made non-traditional life choices through their circus work. “Some of those memorialized may have lost connection to their hometown, possibly even to family,” she explains, “but how lovely that their final resting place is with their community.” 

A bevy of talented guides
Minneapolis native and Lakewood tour guide Sarah Wuest has long known the historical stories of many Lakewood residents, including those she heard as a child about Lena Olive Smith, Minnesota’s first Black woman lawyer. “I knew how courageous Smith was. How she successfully fought for the rights of the first Black couple to buy a home in all-white South Minneapolis. How she continued waging a legal battle even after an angry mob of protesters tried to force the family to leave their home,” Wuest shares. She enjoys telling her guests about Smith’s contributions and her role in helping Hubert H. Humphrey develop his civil rights platform. “The more information I share,” she explains, “the more I hope it sparks guests to continue learning even after the tour is over.” 

Take a free trolley or walking tour
Whether you are a local history buff, an architecture enthusiast, or simply looking for a unique way to spend an afternoon, our tours offer something for everyone. To join us on an engaging, educational tour, please visit our tour page to see our schedule and reserve your spot. We continually add new tours, so check back often. 

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