High Five Pedal Tours will focus on experiential activities in Ann Arbor, Michigan
Toward the end of December, Travel Agent told you about a new experiential bike tour company in Ann Arbor, Michigan. And now we're telling you it's ready to be booked.
Dave Cicotte, who previously served as marketing communications and social media associate for Conlin Travel, is aiming to give the traditional pedal/beer tours an interesting spin with his new High Five Pedal Tours.
While most bike-and-drink tours include drinking from point A to point B, Cicotte’s High Five Pedal Tours aims to make alcohol just one part of the attraction, but not the main event. The official launch of High Five Pedal Tours was on March 2. Tours are available for booking now for dates between April 2 and the end of November. Tours can be booked on www.highfivepedaltours.com. There is a 10 percent commission for travel agents.
|Dave Cicotte, owner of High Five Pedal Tours|
High Five Pedal Tours is a local tour company that offers guests the chance to experience Ann Arbor via an 18-person commercial quadricycle, which is also referred to as a Pedal Trolley. Tours include progressive restaurant tours, bookstore tours, brewery and brewpub tours, art tours and more. There is also an option to add entertainment to tours, which includes comedians, improv actors, magicians, musicians, and local tour guides and historians. The improv cast comes from Pointless Brewery and Theater.
The tours will start/stop at AnnArbor Distilling Company, where passengers can enjoy a hand crafted cocktail with house made spirits in the tasting room before and after tours. Also some musicians used will be the Violin Monster (an Ann Arbor legend, also travels to New Orleans in the winter and was recently on an episode of "America's Got Talent"), and Luis Resto, who won an Oscar and Grammy for co-writing "Lose Yourself" with Eminem on the "8 Mile" soundtrack. He has worked with a number of artists like Frank Sinatra, Willy Nelson, Jay-Z and more.
“I think all anyone has been hearing is how experiential travel is so hot and so in demand, mainly among Millennials,” Cicotte told us back in December. “When people think of Millennials, they usually think we are all super young and never want to spend money. That isn’t true. We just want to spend money on something we’ve never done before, something new, something different.”
Whereas brewery and wine tours on bikes have been done before, Cicotte is looking to spice up the experiential portion of his company by offering such tours as visiting historic bookstores in Ann Arbor. A lot of the bookstores do signing and reading events at night. The plan would call for perhaps spending 20 minutes at a bookstore followed by a stop at a wine bar before experiencing a reading and signing at another bookstore later in the evening.
On the bikes will be various forms of unique entertainment. Cicotte says he has already secured the service of some local musicians who will perform live music on the bikes and is also looking to hire some magicians to perform magic tricks as clients are pedaling. He has also targeted tour guides and improv actors.
Cicotte says he also hopes to work with the University of Michigan to do walking tours of the campus since biking there is very difficult. He is not looking to target students however as Cicotte says he would like instead conduct walking tours mainly for the visiting parents of students.
|High Five Pedal Tours uses 16-person, battery assisted quadricycles|
Cicotte says the main difference between his company and other bike/wine/beer tours is that there is no actual drinking while clients are pedaling on High Five Pedal Tours. Instead, clients bike to various historical, drinking locations and indulge once they get there, but there is no drinking on the bike. You drink at the pub and not on the bike. And to make sure his clients are receiving accurate knowledge, Cicotte has met with local Ann Arbor historian David Bardallis.
The bikes are 17-person (including the driver), battery assisted quadricycles (name given by Michigan legislature). They are produced in the Netherlands by a company called Fietscafe (Bicycle Cafe). It seats 16 passengers (six on each) on the sides where 10 people pedal (two of the seats over the wheel wells don't have pedals), three on a bench in the rear of the bike, and one in the center. The center will be the area where the entertainment (comedians, improv actors, magicians, musicians, and tour guides) will work.
Prices for these tours will range from $350 and $400, Cicotte says, and will depend on the day of the week and the time of day. Anyone looking for a tour from noon to 10 p.m. will pay about $350 while late night tours from 10 p.m. to noon are $25 extra. Tours are offered from Sunday to Saturday.
Cicotte's also has more than nine years of experience in events, marketing, public relations, digital marketing, communications, design, and social media advertising/marketing. Cicotte was also a board member for Signature Travel Network’s Young Advisors Community (YAC).
He also spoke at the 2015 Travel Industry Exchange on the topics of Millennial travel and social media advertising and marketing.