After reading Susan Glaser’s Oct. 17 article, “Beyond Superman, Ralphie and Rockefeller,” I must compliment her and Destination Cleveland for their efforts to diversify Cleveland’s tourist destinations. However, I have to remind Clevelanders that we have the African American Museum in Cleveland – a place I took visitors on tour when I was working for North Coast Tours – until it suddenly closed.
As I continue to take visitors to the city, I try to include information about various cultures, important people from various backgrounds, and significant accomplishments from people of different races. Let’s not forget Jesse Owens, Harrison Dillard, Garrett Morgan, The Call and Post newspaper, Rita Dove, Toni Morrison, The Cleveland Buckeyes, etc.
Tour guides are more than willing to share full information and take visitors to various locations. But wait! Where are the African American tour guides? Asian guides? Latino tour guides? Therein lies both an enigma and an opportunity. Who better to tell the stories and share the story?
Do not mistake yourself. I am not shying away from the question of diversity; I try to improve the tourist experience and the job market.
Editor’s Note: In 2009, volunteers reopened the Cleveland African American Historical Museum at 1765 Crawford Road, near East 86th Street and Hough, while continuing to raise funds for its renovation. The museum is open Mondays, Tuesdays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., according to its website, aamcle.org.