Brain Research – Some Thoughts for Interpreters

Sperry’s famous research at Caltech on the “split-brain” was shared with the scientific community in the 1960s, and since then, numerous other studies have been done that provide more insight into the varied specialized functions of different parts of the human brain. These studies suggest that there is no simplistic explanation of “right-brained” and “left-brained”Continue reading “Brain Research – Some Thoughts for Interpreters”

The Show Will Go On

Last week when the US government shutdown began, a nightly news show glibly reported that “there would be no show this fall” in America’s first and quite possibly favorite national park. Yellowstone National Park is known for its incredible beauty year-round. In spring and summer, crowds are drawn to the meadows filled with wildflowers, theContinue reading “The Show Will Go On”

Eight Strategies for Community Collaboration

Communities employ varied strategies and tactics to create positive change. These  strategies are a starting point for communities seeking ways to collaborate and improve their tourism products and experiences. 1.    Assess what’s working and what is not – This usually requires a consultant who can serve as an objective observer. Analysis of the visitor experienceContinue reading “Eight Strategies for Community Collaboration”

Tourism Collaboration Should Be Easier – 5 Reasons To Collaborate

Remember when we were children? Our mothers worried about how to get us to play well together, to share toys and to cooperate. There seems to be some natural inclination among humans to compete. But even as children we found ways to overcome the tendency and collaborate. We built sand castles on the beach together,Continue reading “Tourism Collaboration Should Be Easier – 5 Reasons To Collaborate”

The Ethics of Interpretation – Choosing to make a difference

A friend and colleague in Panama recently posted a question that caused me to think more deeply about a conservation issue. It seems a private zoo owner had attempted to move about ten percent of the remaining animals of a rare and endangered species from their natural habitat in Panama to his zoo collection inContinue reading “The Ethics of Interpretation – Choosing to make a difference”

Professionalism – Six Ideas to Consider

Several years ago we were in the Galapagos Islands leading an ecotour along with our local guide who grew up on the islands. He admitted to having some interpretive training but it was not evident in his performance. He glibly told us the names of things with no explanation of their role in the ecosystemContinue reading “Professionalism – Six Ideas to Consider”

Try to Remember – Keep a Journal

I am reading Undaunted Courage  by Stephen Ambrose and the wonderful journals of the men on the Voyage of Discovery from Washington, D.C. to Oregon coast with Lewis and Clark left us amazing accounts of their journeys. Where would we be without journals? It was ornithology class in college that made me start keeping aContinue reading “Try to Remember – Keep a Journal”

Training Guides to Interpret

We were walking down a path through a beautiful botanical garden many years ago and our guide was talking over her shoulder with only a few able to hear. When she stopped she would start talking and not wait for the group to gather. When asked a question she could not answer, she pulled aContinue reading “Training Guides to Interpret”

Let’s Get Personal

Every time I go in my bank I expect to hear one of the clerks I’ve seen many times to call me by name. It never happens. I am in there every week or two and have been using this bank for 15 years. They are consistent. No one, even if they’ve seen me aContinue reading “Let’s Get Personal”

Five Reasons Why You Should Have an Interpretive Plan

I cringe when I hear the words Ready-Fire-Aim used to describe the planning approach that many organizations use in developing new programs and facilities. I cringe because it was my favorite approach thirty years ago. I simply had no planning experience and it seemed reasonable to try something, anything, and hope it would work. FundersContinue reading “Five Reasons Why You Should Have an Interpretive Plan”