Dave Ducharme is committed to bringing his horseless horse carriages to the city of Detroit. He's nearly there, too, with the first two of his three 'old world'-style carriages approved to begin providing tours downtown as Andre's Carriage Tours
. He hopes a third carriage will be approved by the Department of Natural Resources to tour Belle Isle State Park.
After dreaming up the idea for a horseless horse carriage, Ducharme partnered with Quality Time Recreation in Kimball, Michigan to make it a reality. The carriages utilize electric golf cart motors as a means of propulsion. Every driver will either wear white tuxedos with high hats and canes or French Renaissance costume attire, complete with puffy shirts and hats with ostrich feathers.
Ducharme came up with the idea for a horseless horse carriage -- the only of its kind, he says -- over three years ago. Since then, he's been pursuing officials in city and state government to allow him to make it happen. Originally hoping to provide tours along the RiverWalk, Ducharme was told the carriages were too wide and would get in the way of pedestrians. He then shifted his focus downtown, where he was eventually given permission to operate.
"I'm back. I'm licensed. I'm approved," says Ducharme. "Let's entertain people and show off those jewels downtown."
Andre's Carriage Tours are currently based out of the Miller Parking structure across from the Renaissance Center. Though not yet operating on a regular basis, Andre's Carriage Tours will begin as soon as the weather warms up. Once you don't need a blanket covering you during the ride, he says, the tours will be running from sun up to sun down.
Ducharme plans on offering sports-, theater-, and architecture-themed tours with an emphasis on the city's history.
Source: Dave Ducharme, proprietor of Andre's Carriage Tours
Writer: MJ Galbraith
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