Washington D.C. welcomes you to our next National Docent Symposium, October 24 to 27, 2019.

NDS2019 is happy to announce we have completed registration for this year’s National Docent Symposium in Washington, D.C.  There will be over 400 registrants attending, representing art, history and science institutions from around North America.

If you have questions about the Symposium, please go to our “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQ) tab for your most commonly asked questions. Additional information may be obtained by contacting us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

You may view details of our upcoming Symposium by clicking on the Registration tab.  Descriptions of Pre-Tours, Afternoon Out tours, and Breakout sessions are detailed there. 



  • We have completed registration for all Pre-Tours, Afternoon Out tours, and Workshop events. If you would like to make further changes or see about attending specific events for which you have not yet registered, please check at the Registration desk in the Promenade Foyer.
  • When you arrive at the Mayflower Hotel, please check in at the NDS2019 Registration and Hospitality Desks in the Promenade Foyer on the first floor.  Hours are - Wednesday, Oct 23 1:00-7:00 pm and Thursday, Oct 24 8:00 am- 6:30pm.  Check the desk for hours of operation from Friday through Sunday. 
  • For an overview of the Symposium program, check out  https://www.nationaldocents.org/dc2019/schedule
  • Please be aware that there have been substitutions made for cancelled Workshop sessions.  Certain ‘Pre-Tours’ and ‘Afternoon Out’ programs have been cancelled due to inadequate registration.  We have attempted to contact all those involved.  Nonetheless, review your “Registration History” on our website to check on your scheduled events.  There remain ‘Afternoon Out’ tours and Workshops for which you may register.  You will receive a printed list of your activities when you register at the Mayflower Hotel.  If you no longer plan to join a workshop or afternoon out tour, please cancel that event on our Registration tab as early as possible, allowing others who are on wait lists the opportunity to participate.
  • Space is still available on two pre-tours, both involving private collections.  Please contact us ASAP at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.
  • Cool weather has finally arrived in Washington.  As temperatures in the event rooms are quite variable, we suggest you bring a sweater with you.
  • While we anticipate that the Symposium will keep you quite busy, your NDS2019 hosts hope that you will have a chance to see at least a small part of what Washington DC has to offer. Remember, you are free to explore on Friday night - dinner, a show, a walk on the mall or along the Potomac River. If you’re a “foodie”, consider making reservations right now. Nobody in DC cooks at home on Friday night. Need some ideas or suggestions, see our Local Faves tab on the NDS website or any of these sites (https://washington.org/ and https://www.washingtonpost.com/goingoutguide/  - click on Events tab) 
  • The Hospitality Committee is excited about your arrival. We can help you find things around the hotel, down the street or in the DC and nearby Maryland and Virginia areas. You will find us at the Hospitality Desk in the lobby or engage with any of the 100+ NDS 2019 Volunteers helping in the workshops, the afternoon out, and the pre-trips. You can’t miss us; we will be wearing “Ask Me” buttons and big smiles. And if you don’t have a question, chat with us anyway. We are all docents from museums in the DC area, have great experiences to share and would love to hear about your museum. 

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What's New

Keynote Speaker:
Augustus Casely-Hayford
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Symposium Speakers:
Kaywin Feldman
Karleen Gardner
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