Museum visitors enjoying an Historic Building Tour. Photo by Kevin Allen.Museum visitors enjoying an Historic Building Tour. Photo by Kevin Allen.Museum visitors meet their tour guide after hours for a Ghost Tour. Photo by Museum staff.

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More than 9,000 people participated in tours this year. Our daily Historic Building tours serve as the backbone of our tour offerings, but we offered a range of tours to suit every interest.

Tours of the very popular Unbuilt Washington exhibition frequently filled entire rooms of the exhibition and were very popular as a custom tour booking. Our hands-on Discovery Carts, Arches and Trusses and Bridging the Gap, have shared information about engineering and materials with summer camps, scout groups, and science students.

2012 also saw the opening of the House & Home exhibition and the training of docents for this long-term exhibition. These tours are accessible for all ages and have worked well with young children, senior citizens, and international visitors.

Our after-hours Ghost Tours continued to be a huge draw. Visitors really enjoy hearing the spooky stories associated with the building and wandering the dark hallways.

Roughly 60% of the National Building Museum’s nearly 200 volunteers serve as docents for one or more tours. Docent training includes information on working with a variety of museum audiences, education theory, presentation techniques, and extensive content information. Tours of the National Building Museum are never scripted, allowing docents to share their interests and strengths.

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