Meet Our Guides

Our friendly, knowledgeable guides can't wait to help you Explore the City!

Barb Abbott, Owner

The original guide, Since 2012!

As a former park naturalist, Barb may get sidetracked if she sees a bird, but don’t worry, she’ll rebound quickly and point out many interesting things throughout the city, including our feathered friends.

Growing up in Akron’s North Hill neighborhood, Barb was raised on Italian pasta (Dad’s side) and Slovak pierogies (Mom’s side). She is a University of Akron graduate and loves to banter about it with fellow tour guides Stephanie and Eric who are Kent State grads. She resides in Canton.

An avid reader, you may find her at the Main Library in Akron, Little Sparrow Book Shop in Canton, or Books in Stock in Wooster.

Of course you’ll also find her enjoying a meal at our great restaurants. As founder of our food tour company, she has officially taste-tested items from every single partner. She’s also gotten the opportunity to eat and travel beyond the region, and has been on 50+ food tours throughout the United States, Canada, and Bahamas. Favorites include Juneau, Alaska and West Palm Beach, Florida.

Favorite Quote: “Live Ever in a New Day”

Eric Smer

Canton Guide

Eric is a Canton native, with family all across Stark County. His undergrad dream at Kent State was to design the next Coca-Cola Super Bowl campaign.

Every Spring and Fall you’ll spot him volunteering at the polls or at a watch party refreshing precinct updates. When he’s not at his Mac, he’s kayaking, snapping pictures, or attending some event in the Canton Arts District… with iPhone tethered close at-hand.

For fun:
-Eric met one of the original and last surviving Wizard of Oz munchkins
-He was the 2018 winner of Dancing With Canton’s Stars

Stephanie Sweany

Canton Guide • Since 2017

Stephanie is a self proclaimed history nerd who has been a food tour guide since 2017. She grew up in Stark County and currently lives near Downtown Canton with her cats Spooky Mulder and Chandler Bing.

Stephanie is a Golden Flash forever, graduating from Kent State University with her degree in Human Development and Family Studies and is active with the Kent State University Alumni Association.

Stephanie spends her days fighting hunger as the Executive Director of Stark County Hunger Task Force. She founded the Canton Kindness Coalition in 2018 and is also active in Women’s Impact. She is a graduate of the Leadership Stark County Signature Program and has been the Twenty Under 40 Award and the Kent State University Alumni Association’s Advocacy Award.
Stephanie can often be seen and heard enjoying a D.O.R.A. or a coffee in Downtown Canton. She has been a vegetarian since age 11 and loves exploring Canton and other cities looking for tasty vegetarian dishes, especially tacos.

Favorite Quote: “Slowing down is not really my jam”, Lesline Knope

Cathy Wyatt

Canton Guide

As a lifelong Canton area resident, 20-year business owner of Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, and nearly a 10-year Downtown Canton apartment dweller — it’s difficult to find someone that isn’t a bigger cheerleader for ALL THINGS CANTON! 

Hard-pressed to ever leave downtown to eat, shop, or go to a social event she can be forced to leave her comfort zone on special occasions. A euchre card shark — she can be spotted at Milestone for a tournament or at The Conestoga on Wednesday evenings for a ‘friendly’ game. She regularly volunteers at The Palace Theatre and can share a few ghost stories or fill you in about the exciting plans for the 100th Anniversary coming up in 2026. 
Favorite Quote: “Carpe Diem!”

Sarah Ozar

Wooster Guide

A Wooster native, Sarah loves to show off her hometown – especially the revitalized and delicious downtown. Her knowledge of the area comes from generations of her family living here, but also her deep dives into Wooster food history. 

During the day, she works at The College of Wooster in the admissions office, and gets to talk about Wooster for her job (doesn’t feel like work most days!), often answering her favorite question, “Do you have any restaurant suggestions?”
Sarah also devours books, making the downtown branch of the library a frequent stop weekly, and a good excuse to stop into Local Roots to see what is new. 
She can’t wait to show you around! 

Join Our Team!

Join our team! Part time positions are available to lead walking/food tours in Akron, Canton, and Wooster. Tour season starts in May or June and runs through November. Afternoon, Evening, and Weekend options.


Please complete the application below. If we feel you are a fit for one of our openings, we’ll be in touch! Thank you for your interest in Explore City Tours!