Over the past two weeks groups two groups totaling 110 students from District 55’s 21st Century program have taken special tours of Downtown Laurens, learning what’s now downtown as well as the Laurens County History. We asked Laurens Main Street Director Jonathan Irick about the tour he gave the kids and their teachers last week and again yesterday. “Several years ago we had one of the Boy Scout troops that developed a scavenger hunt for the courthouse grounds. Basically you’re reading the monuments and looking for other clues….So we can offer than for individuals and we can do with the school groups. So what we did, Main Street set up tours of the Museum, Downtown to include the Museum, the Capitol Theatre and the Artist Coop and then the Historic Courthouse and then the Scavenger Hunt. And we divided those kids up, depending on how may were here, into two-to-three groups and rotated them around between those different stops. So they could get a real good flavor of what all we have in Downtown.” Jonathan Irick said even teachers on the tour learned about things available in Downtown Laurens.
We asked him about the purpose of these Downtown tours. “I think from the school district’s perspective is letting the kids know what’s going on in our community. And actually, we heard some of the same things from some of the teachers that came. They didn’t realize that we had all this stuff in Downtown. As we were leaving the Artists Coop, for instance, one of the teachers looked at me and said ‘I had no idea this was all Downtown.’ So it’s mainly making the kids aware of what’s in Downtown and then also they’re learning – they may not realize it – but they’re learning a little bit of history as well.”