Tour Philadelphia With SoundAboutPhilly Podcast

Sep 23rd, 2006 | By | Category: Audio Podcasting

Philadelphia iPod tourA new series of free, dynamically mapped and customizable sound-seeing tours of Philadelphia debuted today at

The SoundAboutPhilly tours concentrate on lesser-known city experiences and combine interesting tales, fun facts and lively music to tell the area’s story. The tours feature distinctive and varied voices of experts, boutique owners, chefs, musicians and everyday, in- the-know Philadelphians.

Listeners can listen to any tour directly at the site, download a tour or specific segments to their iTunes or other audio players or sign up for an RSS feed to receive a new tour each time one is uploaded to the Web site.

“Philadelphia’s neighborhoods abound with historical and cultural treasures. SoundAboutPhilly brings to life that rich history, as well as the city’s vibrant present, in a unique and engaging way for residents and visitors alike,” said Don Kimelman of The Pew Charitable Trusts, sponsors of the series. “As the medium itself grows, we hope these podcast tours will become an increasingly popular way to learn about Philadelphia’s varied offerings.”

Tour Topics

The first three tours are:

  • “History Unplugged,” 300 years of non-textbook American history;
  • “Flavorhoods,” a look at dining in different ethnic neighborhoods; and
  • “My Philly,” recommendations straight from the mouths of local Philadelphians – with a few unabashed Philly accents and all.

Each tour introduces listeners to the sounds, history and culture of Philadelphia. Listeners can learn which Old City boutique hosts bridal showers, what not to say when ordering at a favorite Port Richmond pizza joint and which room in City Tavern was destroyed by a rowdy bunch of Founding Fathers as they planned the Revolution.

The remaining four tours, to be unveiled about once a month after the launch, will feature the African American experience in Philadelphia, the undertold tales of the Historic District, the inside scoop on classic Philly spots and a look at the city’s religious history, each transforming the area into a living museum to tell the stories of its past and present.

“The beauty of these tours is that they are flexible and customizable, enabling visitors and residents to let their interests drive their Philadelphia experience,” says Meryl Levitz, president and CEO, Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation. “People can listen to each 10-segment tour in its entirety, or pick certain sections from each of the podcasts to create their own Philadelphia adventure.”

About the technology

SoundAboutPhilly’s dynamic mapping capabilities are another unique feature of the project. The Web site integrates the audio with Google Maps to help people customize a map to match their selected tour, print it out and take it with them as they explore the city.

The Web site will grow over time as a living space for oral information about the city and region, where downloadable tours (beyond the original seven) will live in the future. And, as Philadelphia becomes an increasingly wireless city, the audio tours will be accessible to anyone with a wireless Internet connection in Philadelphia.

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