A new self-guided walking and biking tour booklet that highlights some of Montclair’s historic districts is now available through the Montclair History Center. The booklet includes six self-guided tours, five of which are less than 2 miles and can easily be accomplished on foot. A tour of the Montclair Art Colony’s studios and homes is a longer (8 miles) biking tour. The booklet was made possible through a grant from Partners for Health Foundation.
“The guided walking tours we conduct are some of our more popular programs,” says Jane Eliasof, Executive Director of the Montclair History Center. “We’ll continue to lead guided tours throughout different communities in town, plus cemetery tours of Rosedale and Mount Hebron, and our food and history walking tour that takes you through downtown Montclair talking about our history and sampling some of the restaurants’ foods.”
The booklet is an adaptation of those guided walking tours, but it allows people to go at their own pace at a time that is most convenient to them. The six tours were designed as a result of a survey the Montclair History Center fielded earlier this year. According to the survey, most people wanted tours that were between one and two miles long. The tour locations — Montclair Town Center, Watchung Plaza Historic District, South Mountain Estate Section, Upper Montclair Historic District, the Pine Street Historic District, and the Montclair Art Colony – were based on the top six choices in the survey. In the future, the Montclair History Center hopes to add more self-guided walking tours of other areas of Montclair.
In the survey, the Montclair Art Colony was the most requested tour. As a result of the overwhelming interest in this tour, the Montclair History Center, in partnership with BikeWalk Montclair and the Montclair Art Museum, will lead a guided biking tour going past the artists’ studios and homes on November 3 at XX am. Interested bikers can register at www.montclairhistory.org.
“Our guided tours are more in-depth than these self-guided tours,” explains Eliasof. “However, these self-guided tours give people who can’t or won’t attend a guided tour a great overview of the history of Montclair through its people and its architecture.
The booklet is available in printed form and electronically on the Montclair History Center’s website www.montclairhistory.org.