Statewide Guide Training Workshop Enrolling Now

February 21, 2024, 11:42 am | Esther Crompton , Diane Van Wyngarden

AMES, Iowa – Registration is now open for the 2024 statewide Guide Training Workshop on April 17 at the Briggs Woods Conference Center in Webster City. The one-day workshop features professional insider tips and techniques for creating and delivering dynamic programs that focus on attracting adult visitors.

Guide training workshop participant standing by statue.This interactive program is designed especially for staff and volunteers who lead guided programs at Iowa’s diverse attractions, including historic sites, parks, conservation areas, museums, neighborhood walking tours, agritourism, ethnic food festivals, retail and industry tours, and city leaders who provide community tours to attract prospective new residents.

Pre-registration is required by April 3. The $12 workshop fee includes the course workbook, workshop sessions, lunch and refreshments. Register online at or call 800-285-5842. For more information, contact

Individuals who complete this workshop can receive Professional Guide Certification from Iowa State University for a reduced additional fee. Certification is conducted at each individual’s place of work or Iowa location of choice. More workshop and certification information is available at

The training is taught by Diane Van Wyngarden, state tourism specialist for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, who is a nationally certified interpretive guide trainer and coach.

“Every Iowa community features regional treasures,” said Van Wyngarden, “Locals can utilize their community assets to provide excellent visitor experiences — if they have the training and tools to do it well.”

Van Wyngarden highlighted that over 350 individuals from 76 Iowa cities have completed this training and are providing memorable experiences that attract more visitors and enhance their communities’ tourism economies.

The cost of this workshop has been underwritten by the Iowa Economic Development Authority/Iowa Tourism Office, Hamilton County Development, Briggs Woods Conference Center, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

Shareable photo: Guide training workshop participant standing by statue

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