Happy Trails, Larry

Larry walking at the beach
A Legacy of Instilling a Passion for Walking

Happy trails to Larry Forman, Founder of Walkabout International and Professor of computer and information sciences at City College, where his presence has been felt for nearly 40 years. He made history by teaching the first college credit racewalking class in the United States at City College, and then went on to teach a class in the neighborhood history and architecture under the invented interesting title “The Sociology of the Urban Encounter.”

Recently he passed away from an acute illness, during which he corresponded with Senator John McCain, who had succumbed to the same illness recently. Dr. Forman’s “hiccup” in his health emerged in April of 2017. Within two hours of the first operation, Professor Forman emailed his students to apologize for missing class and announced what the next assignments were, all from his hospital bed. 

In November of 2017, although quite ill, he conducted a Joy of Walking event at Liberty Station to help honor Walkabout’s 40th anniversary. He worked tirelessly to put together the event and was able to give a heartfelt presentation honoring Walkabout and the community. Known for his over-the-top and eccentric ways, Larry was well known for his cheerful greetings both of his students and his Walkabout friends: “Welcome friends and neighbors, to another day of fun and games!” 

He was always serious about having fun in teaching and learning for both the students and for himself then he would follow up with his typical rhetorical question: are you ready to rock? If the response was not sufficiently enthusiastic, he would play the famous Queen Youtube video of Freddie Mercury singing we will we will rock you until the students responded in a dramatically exuberant way.

During his years at City, Professor Forman had legions of students taking his courses with many students taking multiple classes.  Professor Forman’s first of three sabbaticals led him to enroll in a Ph.D. program.  After receiving his degree, he was eventually awarded two Fulbright scholarships, one to Canada and one to Denmark, before returning to City College to become chair of the new information technology department. Along the way he received numerous awards for teaching excellence, including City’s Golden Apple award as well as districtwide, statewide, national and international awards for teaching and for innovative curriculum development.

When not roaming the hallways of City College, Larry Forman often wandered the sidewalks as a professional streetwalker. He conducted customized behind-the-scenes walking tours in distinctive neighborhoods of the world as the founding father of a nonprofit educational organization called Walkabout international, which annually conducts in San Diego over a thousand free walks of varying pace, distance and theme. A favorite is his La Jolla ice cream social amble he conducted with his teenage son Joel, where hundreds would wander the streets of the seaside community stopping at every ice cream and frozen yogurt parlor. Since 1977, Larry has been the catalyst for Walkabout leading over 40,000 walks on planet earth covering over 2 million people miles, the equivalent of walking around the equator over 80 times for thousands of souls. Quite a feat!

The climactic ending to every one of Larry’s classes was his hosting a pizza party while students presented their final projects to the class, which concluded by all singing Roy Rogers and Dale Evans signature song,

Happy trails to you, Larry Forman.

Matterhorn Meanderings August 2008
Switzerland Interlaken


Elaine Berger, President

It is with great sadness that the Walkabout family learned of the passing of our dear friend and co-founder Larry Forman. However, Larry would not want us to mourn him but instead celebrate the full life he enjoyed. How best to honor and celebrate him-get out and WALK. Grab a friend and go walk on the beach, in a local park or even just in your own neighborhood. Larry’s great love for walking is an inspiration to us all and we thank him for the numerous adventures he provided for his many Walkabout friends.

La Jolla village Trail

Stan to lead Boise and Trailing of the Sheep Festival October 7 to 14, 2019

Join us for an 8-day, 7-night Coach tour of Idaho highlights, from the state capitol in Boise to the wonderful Trailing of the Sheep Festival in Ketchum. On Monday we fly nonstop to Boise and will start with 3 days with walks along the Boise river and tours of the beautiful State Capitol. We will stay at the Marriott Springhill Suites as we have in times past. Please use these hotlinks to see the some of the attractions  on this trip. https://www.marriott.com/hotels/hotel-photos/boidt-springhill-suites-boise-parkcenter/

Walter K Serenading the group in 2015
Walter K entertains our 2015 group; they are in the mirror and are really watching him. 
We will have the wonderful fountain of information and baritone voice, Walter Konopka Jr. as our co-leader.
Del Parkinson has agreed to entertain us again as he has on ALL of our previous Boise trips https://music.boisestate.edu/dparkins/ Other attractions will be announced as they develop.
Del Parkinson seated at his piano August 23, 2017 Photography by Gabriel Mayberry /BYU

On Thurs we take a coach trip to Ketchum where we will spend 4 days and enjoy the Trailing of the Sheep Festival and watch hundreds of sheep parade through town. On the last Monday, we will again coach back to Boise  have a nonstop flight home. Breakfasts in our hotels and one or two evening banquets are included in the cost. 

In Ketchum, we will be staying at the Limelight Hotel, https://www.limelighthotels.com/ketchum , which is in the middle of town and right on the route of the Sunday  of sheep parade and other attractions.The cost of the trip is still evolving; however, until April 5 the cost is $1,219 per person, double occupancy (PP/DO). The cost for single occupancy is $1,789.  If 3 travelers wish to share a double queen bedroom the cost for each will be $839 and a discount for each of 3 in a double queen bedroom will be $380 The minimum number of travelers may be 20. The maximum number will be determined by hotel room availability and air travel factors. The deposit is $719 and is refundable until April 5, at that time it will be NONREFUNDABLE Travelers are always encouraged to take trip insurance to cover unanticipated cancellations.Please send your deposits of $719 to the WI office now and mark for “BOISE 2019”.  If you have paid your deposit of $419 Please send an additional $300 which is refundable until April 5. There will not be any mailed information so one person in each traveling group needs to have an email address. 
Walkabout International
Boise 2019
2650 Truxtun Rd, Suite 110
San Diego, CA 92106
Please call Stan Follis at 619.222.3447 or reply to this email, if you have any questions.

October 2015 our previous group walks along a road in Ketchum

The main event is the Trailing of the Sheep Festival in Sun Valley, an amazing collection of wool crafts; Peruvian, Scottish and Basque culture; and sheep dog herding competition. Please check the web site for information.   http://www.trailingofthesheep.org/