SoundAboutPhilly Heard Far and Wide (Spring 2007 Trust Magazine briefing)

  • May 07, 2007

“I am contacting you because I am currently working with a group in Virginia to develop a marketing plan as well as looking at ways they can improve their tourist-oriented product to offer a great visitor experience. We talked about audio tours, and I immediately thought of SoundAboutPhilly.”

This is the kind of note that often arrives in the mailbox of Pew-supported SoundAboutPhilly, a series of city tours that you can download on your MP3 player or access from anywhere via computer.

The excursions cover the city's less-well- known experiences, are free and come with dynamic mapping, engaging photography and narratives by real Philadelphians. They can be found at

The letter (from Carolyn Brackett, senior program associate at the Heritage Tourism Program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and printed with her permission) continues:

“I shared the Web site link with my client and told them I think this is the best tour program I have seen anywhere and encouraged them to think about something along these lines. One of the appeals is that visitors can download the sections they are interested in. Since the region in Virginia is about 150 miles long, it solves the problem of ‘which end to start' that would come with traditional CD-based tours.”

Not resting on its laurels, Sound- AboutPhilly adds new tours constantly. Two of the latest: “Philly Noir,” showing the city's black history, and “Vintage,” a guide to finding collectibles.