Free walking tours in Hudson have been a tradition for many years, most recently with Hudson Library & Historical Society archivist Gwen Mayer leading the procession.
But if the Underground Railroad, ghosts and kit homes haven’t been enough to lure you out, perhaps scandals, disasters or architecture will pique your interest.
Three new tours have been added to Mayer’s repertoire this year: Scandals of Hudson, Disasters of Hudson History and Architectural Hudson.
“It’s fun to get outside and experience the intimacy of the past in a leisurely pace instead of whizzing by in a car,” she said. “An added advantage is that we’re all getting to know our community history and each other a bit more.”
But Hudson residents aren’t the only ones donning their sneakers for the walks; they attract neighbors from throughout the region, Mayer added.
Some of the tours have already stepped off once this year and are “wildly popular,” Mayer said.
Without giving away too many surprises, Scandals of Hudson involves century-old criminal activities ranging from murder to bank robberies to a speakeasy.
The Disasters tour explores the sites of accidents and calamity in Hudson’s history (fires, floods, explosions) while the Architectural tour demonstrates why Hudson streets and buildings define the image of the Western Reserve.
Mayer is also offering her usual repertoire of walks on the Underground Railroad, highlighting locals involved during the abolitionist era; Kit Homes, showcasing 20th century houses built from kits ordered through Sears and other manufacturers; and Spooky Hudson, featuring “unusual, freakish and eerie history,” Mayer said.
All tours start in front of the library at 96 Library St., as long as the weather cooperates.
Registration is encouraged since each tour is limited to 30 people.
Here are the remaining dates, with tours starting at 6:45 p.m. unless otherwise noted:
Scandals of Hudson tours are May 22, June 12, July 10 (2 p.m.) and Sept. 2.
Disasters of Hudson tours are June 21 (2 p.m.) and Aug. 2 (2 p.m.)
Architectural History tours are Aug. 4 and Oct. 7.
Underground Railroad tours are June 16 (2 p.m.), July 7 and Sept. 25.
Kit Homes tours are June 2 and Aug. 11.
Spooky Hudson tours are July 30 and Oct. 28.
Registration is required. Visit the library or online at www.hudsonlibrary.org or call 330-653-6658, ext. 1010.