The Development of the Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls Using Mobile App Technology by Andrew Porteus

Brock University conferred on me the degree of Master of Arts in Popular Culture at the virtual convocation ceremony held in mid-October, 2020. Part of the requirements was to complete a major research project (MRP). My MRP was the development of a poetry walking tour of Niagara Falls using mobile app technology. The tour is available for android users (iOS will be coming) – click here for the instructions for using it.

I had previously posted about the Poetry Selection Event that was part of the development of this tour. Here’s a link to that post.

In addition to developing the walking tour itself, an academic paper had to be written about the project. This paper is now in the Brock University Digital Repository and can be accessed using this link. I have included the abstract below.

Please feel free to send feedback if you use the walking tour app or read the paper.


The Niagara Falls Poetry Project (NFPP) has been an ongoing research-creation project for many years. In addition to being a site of poetry of place it is also a site of recovery and discovery of Niagara poetry. This MRP used social construction of technology and of literature theories as a framework to develop the Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls (PWT) to extend the NFPP. Twenty-four points of interest were selected following a route along the Niagara River, passing Niagara Falls. Content analyses and close readings of the poetry on the NFPP website were conducted to preselect suitable poems to present to a panel of poets, academics, and end users at a Poetry Selection Event. Using the participatory design techniques of crowdsourcing and a modified Delphi method, the “best” poem for each of the points of interest was selected. The poem, explanatory historical and literary material, images, and multimedia were added to the Interpretours platform website, which was then used to populate the GuideTags mobile app for smartphones and tablets. The end result is a fully functional mobile app GPS guided walking tour of Niagara Falls that alerts users to points of interest that highlight the poetry and history of Niagara Falls. The role of the PWT in the local economy as a tourist attraction, particularly for the heritage and literary tourism sectors are contributions of the project

Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls

Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls Logo

It’s not totally finished yet, but the Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls is now live. Starting point is Dufferin Islands and ends at the Rainbow Bridge.

poetry walking tour
Route of the Poetry Walking Tour

There are 24 “Points of Interest” on the tour, each with a poem, photos, and information about the spot. Some have videos or audio recordings also.

For best results, download the tour ahead of time. It is available using the internet or data, but if they’re not working properly or the signal is weak the tour may not load completely.

Go to the NFPP Instructions for Accessing the Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls page for instructions.

Here’s a link to the announcement about the Poetry Selection Event that we held in January, to select the poems on the tour. Here’s a link to the wrap-up, including a video.

Poem Selection Event

Most of the people at the poetry selection event. Thank you very much for participating.

Last Sunday, January 19, 15 people joined me at the Third Space Café in Niagara Falls for a poetry selection event. The purpose of the event was to select the poems that would go into the Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls app that I’m developing.

Each of the people involved gave permission to be photographed and videotaped. Thanks to my son Oliver Porteus who  photographed, videotaped, and then edited it.



Poetry Selection Event

Please join me on Sunday, January 19, from 2-5 pm at Third Space Café on Queen St., Niagara Falls, Ont. for a poetry selection event.

We will collectively select the poems of Niagara Falls that will appear on the Poetry Walking Tour of Niagara Falls mobile app that I am developing. First we’ll get together in small groups and pick the best 2 poems presented to your group. Then we’ll get together as a whole group, read them out, and decide which ones are the best. You don’t need any poetry experience, it’s just the ones you like best.

We will provide free food and drinks .

Please email me at so I know how many people are coming. Please feel free to invite your friends.

I hope to see you at the poetry selection event!

poetry selection event