There are about 40 “Party Bikes” operating across the United States, but Elm City Party Bike is the first to hit New England. Located in the company founders’ hometown of New Haven, Connecticut, the endeavor combines a city tour concept with a party bus pub crawl – and throws in a bit of exercise for good measure!
Colin Caplan identifies himself as an “owner, captain and spokesman,” for the company. He was born and raised in New Haven, has written books about the city’s history, and operates another successful tourism business, Taste of New Haven.
Caplan was the natural choice to act as guide and bartender for the inaugural tour on Saturday April 1.
His partner, Christian Bruckhart, was the driver, maintaining a speed of about 5 mph. Bruckhart is also a New Haven police officer – at least until the success of Elm City Party Bike allows him to retire!
The “bike” is powered by 8 – 15 riders pedaling from various points along the contraption. A tour guide rides up front and can turn on an electric motor if the peddlers need a little extra steam to take them up a hill.
Riders must be 21 or older since the party bike serves alcohol and makes stops at local bars, cafes and shops. A two hour tour costs about $35 per person, or the entire bike can be rented out for large groups or events for $450.
Ticket holders with jobs associated with the military, emergency, education and healthcare enjoy a 20% discount for their service.
Aside from the standard sight-seeing/bar-hopping tour, guests can also request a “Historic Narrated Tour with one of our historian guides, or a Spirits & Spirit & Experience with our resident medium and ghost finder!” according to the website.
The party bike has been so popular that it has already expanded to Milford, CT!