115 S Church Ave Suite 200
Tucson, AZ 85701
Hours of OperationMonday - Friday 8 A.M to 5 P.M
To Whomever It May Concern At The Tucson Visitor Center,
On August 25/10 I ended up in downtown Tucson and, lo and behold, I saw the sign "Visitor Center". Walking in, I was immediately struck by the cordiality of the lady working the late afternoon shift, the vast number of brochures to be found, and the great advice given to myself by the wonderful lady (whose name I unfortunately never got to know). She not only gave great suggestions as to where I might find a suitable hotel within my budget range, but she also put me in touch with Michael Foltz -- owner and operator of Reisen Arizona Day Tours.
That Michael Foltz is extremely knowledgeable about all of Arizona goes without saying. After all, that is his job and the sort of thing one would expect from a tour guide. But unlike most tour guides (and I've had a few over the years), Michael is possessed of a certain charm, wit, and wisdom that can turn even a seemingly mundane exercise (such as standing on a street corner in Tombstone) into an exciting intellectual adventure.
Stated differently, Michael is not someone who merely goes through a series of perfunctory motions in his role as tour guide. To the contrary, he bubbles with the sort of enthusiasm which suggests that, even if he were not being paid, he would gladly inform individuals about Arizona out of sheer enthusiasm and willingness to help people. In fact, while guiding me through Mission San Xavier del Bac, we encountered a stray truck driver who was hopelessly lost and who, despite his predicament, saw fit to step inside the church after Michael gave him the proper directions in addition to telling the driver that he had mistakenly strayed onto the parking lot of the oldest church in the United States.
Quite clearly, then, Michael comported himself with the sort of cheery enthusiasm about Arizona that I found both quite remarkable and contagious. Indeed, because I enjoyed the first tour so much (Tombstone), I felt the strong urge to go on yet another tour with Michael. Unlike most guides, Michael was able to offer social, political and cultural commentary which, for a Canadian such as myself, proved to be indispensable in enabling me to tap into the "pulse beat" of Arizona. Had I been able to stay for another week I would in all likelihood have taken another two or three tours with him. Alas, I had to fly back to Toronto on the first of September.
Once again, therefore, I must thank the Tucson Visitor Center for having provided myself with such sound advice and such a remarkable tour guide in the person of Michael Foltz. I will tell others. Cheers from Toronto! jvk.