Melissa Nierman, NOW Age Travel
We offer alternative small group tours for those looking to explore a different side of Witch City.
Tell us a bit about you and what you do?
I'm the founder of NOW Age Travel. So much of what I do brings together my otherwise non-sensical skill set, which includes a background in elementary education, stand-up comedy, improv theater, Tarot, Reiki, and clairvoyance (so what else do you do with that?!). I guide many of the tours myself, and do a lot of planning with individual clients, as well as retreat groups. My focus is really to help create transformational experiences for people coming to Salem, while also supporting our local community of healers.
What part of your job would you consider creative, and why do you enjoy that part of what you do?
My job is very dependent on me being tapped into my creativity, and intuition. What we're really doing is designing experiences. I definitely always enjoy the initial spark of an idea for a tour, and the process of building them from the ground up. But I'm also constantly challenging myself to perform established tours in a fresh way. I also really enjoy the process of building our custom packages, which are like a puzzle that require a lot of listening to both the client, and also my own gut in terms of the flow of experiences, and how they fit together.
How does your creative work contribute to the growth and stability of the Creative Economy? If this isn't applicable: Why do you feel a healthy creative economy is important to a successful community?
There's a common misconception that art, and creativity in generally, are only reflected in traditional mediums, such as painting, theater, and music. But life in itself is a creative process, and helping people experience the world and themselves in unique ways is also an art form, which absolutely contributes to our Creative Economy.
What’s your favorite part of running/managing a local business? (References to how this ties in to your specific community are even better)
My favorite part of running a local business is also my least favorite part. I love (and hate) how it forces me to dig deeper into who I am, what I have to offer the world, and also how I want to do it. And the fact that it's all taking place within this small community (all the people I work with are also my friends) supports that process in a very human way.
What’s the one thing people would be surprised to learn about you our your business?
I think most people who encounter what we do are pretty surprised in general, since it's not the norm in terms of travel companies. It usually takes people experiencing our services for themselves to truly wrap their heads around it. I mean, what's a Tarot Journey walking workshop, right??
Want to learn more about NOW Age? Visit their website
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