Tour Testimonials

“I had the great privilege of experiencing Hood Tours while I was in Asheville a few weeks ago. Mr. DeWayne Barton (aka Tour Guide Extraordinaire) escorted us to a fantastically decorated van and began what is better categorized as a cultural experience vs. a tour. Hood Tours allowed me to learn about Asheville’s diverse history, especially within traditionally African-American communities. I often forget some details about places I visit but I don’t forget the stories. Mr. Barton and others we met along the way made my Asheville visit unforgettable.  Wish I could have this experience everywhere I visit!” – Jaymie Lorthridge

Hood Tour of Asheville's Historically African-American Neighborhoods

“I am grateful to DeWayne for collecting and telling stories about our community that might have been lost. These are not only stories of struggle but also stories of great resilience. This experience has given me deeper appreciation for my neighbors and for what we might build together.” – J. Clarkson

“Thank you, DeWayne Barton for the wonderful tour of Asheville’s Historic Black Neighborhoods today! It was a highly illuminating trip that has greatly expanded my awareness of Asheville history. My friends and I had a wonderful time. Hood Tours gave me a much better insight into the importance of community and the importance of knowing the history of African Americans here. I endeavor to get involved to help protect the communities I encountered today. Thank your Mom, too, for letting us experience her yearbook!”
– Kate Tinnan

frank and judy

“Carolina Jews for Justice is happy to support the efforts of Hood Huggers International to expand awareness of Asheville’s African-American communities. Having ourselves taken a Hood Tour, we encourage people to avail themselves of this unique opportunity to learn about an important element of Asheville’s history and the communities’ creative plans for a sustainable future.”
– Judy Leavitt and Frank Goldsmith

ab tech group

“The Hood Tour should be called Wonderhood! Hoodaganza! Black Hoodstory! Just calling it a tour is not enough. The history of black Asheville is rich with tragedy, sadness, triumph, and inspiration, and DeWayne Barton brought it all alive for us. We could have gone on for a few hours more – the story of Affrilachian people, their extraordinary achievements and their everyday courage, is so compelling.”
– Daav Wheeler

“African Americans historically had a well defined, prosperous community in Asheville.  Desegregation and urban renewal during the last half of the twentieth century decimated that community and scattered it into public housing projects around the city.  DeWayne’s Hood Tours gives us a glimpse of what happened and what the community is doing to reform and re-energize itself.  All sorts of emotions come up during this tour. It is two hours well spent.”
– Stephen Pohl

“The staff at MountainTrue took a Hood Tour in an effort to build organization-wide awareness of the history of African American communities in our area. With a commitment to racial equity, our work is informed by the history and context of land use and transportation policies and projects that have had dramatic impacts on communities of color in and around Asheville. We are grateful to DeWayne and the team at Hood Huggers for making this powerful educational opportunity available and accessible for our team and would encourage others to take the tour as well.”
 – Susan Bean, Community Engagement Manager for MountainTrue


Rebuilding Affrilachia: The Art of Resilience