Hello! And thank you for inquiring about Michstory Tours.
I created this tour company while taking care of my brother when he was under hospice care in my own home during the summer of 2021. Clinton Grove Cemetery asked if I would continue giving a cemetery walk when the museum I worked for decided not to continue the event that I created for them and continued to provide since 2006, with the exception of two years providing walks for St. Peter Cemetery and Beth Tephilath Moses Cemetery. This was the push to form my own touring company. It was something that I had thought about for many years.
I have spent the past 30 years working in the museum field. The first ten years were spent honoring the daily life of how most people in America were living as farmers. Working as a lead of living history programs for Henry Ford Museum & Greenfield Village in Dearborn, Michigan allowed me to "live" the life of a farmer from eras spanning from the 1750s to the turn of the century. It allowed me to step into my ancestors shoes and experience the day to day life that they experienced.
Then I became Marketing Manager for the Automotive Hall of Fame when it just opened to the public. I was then exposed to the history of the auto industry of which my own grandfather moved off the farm to participate in.
I also directed the Macomb County Historical Society and Crocker House Museum for 19 years. While there I steeped myself into the local history of Macomb County, Michigan and its famous Mineral Bath Era.
I then worked as Curator for both the Selinsky-Green Farmhouse Museum in St. Clair Shores and the Packard Proving Grounds Historical Site in Shelby Township. As of March 16, 2023 I'm happily working full-time hours as Curator of the Packard Proving Grounds Historical Site.
One constant thread remains and continues since 1994; teaching American Mourning and Funeral Customs and hosting Cemetery Walks. I have enjoyed the honor of helping many other institutions and historical sites create their own Cemetery Walk with the use of having reenactors tell the stories of the individuals who were part of their community. It is the one thing that truly stands out throughout the years of working in the field of history. And it all sums up to PEOPLE! It is the people, not objects, that are truly the gems of each community. Its sad that often these gems are not truly seen for their value while they are alive and with us. So, its my hope that this tour company can help people realize that they have their own story that is worth preserving and telling. And that each of us are important to each-other even if we have never met. In some way or another we connect. Even through time that connection remains. Something from everyone is left behind for the next generation.
My love and life partner, Jeff Pavlik, is now working with me to create new programming. We met over 26 years ago while working together at the Firestone Farm at Greenfield Village. He has a wonderful knowledge of history and is a bread historian. We enjoy giving baking and cooking programs together up at Fort Michilimackinac and other historical sites throughout the U.S. We are excited to work together with our combined experience and knowledge to offer some interesting and fun programs.
We look forward to having you join us in discovering fascinating stories from this wonderful and beautiful state of Michigan. And, we hope that through these journeys you are inspired to realize your value and worth to the greater community of Michigan. Everyone has a story worth telling.
Please join us in looking forward and past this time of pandemic in planning interesting and fun adventures together.
We look forward to seeing you!