Walk outside the crowd and read the city. Discover how the city works from what you observe: marks on the pavement, heights of buildings, placement of manholes, doorways and trees, changing acoustics.
Small groups (max. 6 people) / $35 person Private group (max. 6 people) / $200 group Email: info@readthecity
Mary was born and raised in the “Rural South” meaning she spent many years running through the Smoky Mountains, barefoot, in overalls, trackin’ critters. Dazzled by TV images of fancy hats, sidewalks and tall buildings she left to get a fix on the Big City. Washington D.C., New York, Boston, and just as the world was partying because it was 1999, she arrived in San Francisco. Ambassador for creativity, advocate for the poetics of urbanity, occasional mapmaker, and compulsive photographer. With training from Corcoran College of Art and Harvard University along the way, she is trained as a landscape architect and loves to share her deep fascination for cities and nature.
Megan C. on Yelp
Mary sets a tone of adventurousness and curiosity, inspires in-depth and fearless questioning, and leads the group to uncover all sorts of stories. The bottom line? Whether you are an out-of-town visitor or a life-long resident, Read the City will knock your socks off - and make you fall (even more) in love with San Francisco.
Michael O. on Yelp
A unique tour that will give anyone a great whiff of what its like to be in San Francisco. Open the door of your house, car, or plane, and step into Mary's world. She'll make visible the subtleties of the city's light, how sound changes as you move around in it, and that beneath the concrete where your feet now stand, was once a beautiful beach.
Jay P., San Francisco
An off-the-beaten-path tour that is interesting, educational, and fun--even mindful! Mary showed us so many great things I had never noticed, and would never have known, along a street I travel frequently. From tiny Italian tiles to public rooftop parks that are best-kept secrets, every sight or detail she highlighted was a joy to discover. I treasure this new appreciation I have for my own city and can't wait to revisit some of these spaces on my own. Both warm and sophisticated, Mary shared her insights, encouraged us to sense the environment carefully, and welcomed a variety of comments from our group, making for an engaging and memorable tour. Well worth the time.
Shannon S., San Francisco
Read the City offers the unique opportunity of mindfully observing the sights, smells, sounds, and climate of various spots in our fair city, enlivening the experience and engaging the participants fully with the present as well as the past.