Student finds his calling in ghost tours

By Jenna Carpenter |

Like many college students, Flagler College senior Lorenzo Deagle manages both school and work. However, he does not have the run-of-the-mill or ordinary college job. In fact, Deagle has a job unique to St. Augustine — he is a tour guide for Ghost Tours of St. Augustine and Potter’s Wax Museum.

As a guide, Deagle’s main responsibility is to dress in period-accurate costumes and lead tour groups around the Nation’s Oldest City.

“I lead historical, myth-themed and ghost-themed walking tours for public groups and elementary school, middle school, high school and college groups,” he said.

Deagle first became interested in a job as a tour guide when he moved to St. Augustine. He entered the tour guide business in the summer of 2011.

“I went on a tour with friends and I enjoyed the fact that being a tour guide required a lot of energy, strong communication skills. You have to enjoy human interaction and be good at managing one’s time. I realized I had all of these qualifications,” he said.

A member of the top 10 percent of his class, it was important for Deagle that his job did not interfere with his studies.

“Tour schedules are very flexible, and work with my school schedule,” he said.

Deagle has been a tour guide for two years. A seasoned guide, he said that the worst part of leading tours is when the groups are disrespectful.

“It is hard when I have school groups with kids who are either rude, unruly, or don’t care they are on the tour,” he said. “Or having public groups where the people have been drinking heavily and are not cooperative or are just flat out mean.”

However, despite dealing with uninterested children or drunken adults, Deagle said being a tour guide is rewarding. His favorite part is meeting new people with every new tour. And, like every other tourism business, tips are appreciated.

“This is a tip-earning profession, so there is always the chance of getting a big tip from a good group if the members of the group really get to know their guide and really enjoy the experience,” he said.

Another aspect of being a tour guide is getting the chance to wear the period costumes. Deagle has collected a number of costumes over the past two years.

“During the summer, I wear a Scottish kilt for fun. It’s a good attention getter and it helps the employees point out to the customer who their guide is,” he said.

For something that started out for fun as a hobby has turned into a life-long passion. Deagle plans on continuing reenacting after he graduates. He does not have plans on quitting the business, and he wants reenacting to be a side hobby when he enters the professional world.

“Being a tour guide has given me skills to be flexible as an interpreter for large groups of people, thus serving as a reenactor and historical interpreter is something right up my alley,” he said.

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