By: Brian Clarke
If your one of the thousands that will hit the streets of downtown Ottawa for the Canada Day celebrations, here are some reasons to track down a rickshaw runner and go for a spin:
Anyone who’s ever been on Parliament Hill, in the Byward Market, or on Rideau Street on Canada Day understands that it is nearly impossible to move. With everyone in the streets moving every which way, and some not even moving, it can be frustrating to navigate. Taking a rickshaw ride can help with this. Not only will you be able to relax and avoid the stress of pushing your way through hordes of people, but our rickshaw runners have become experts at getting through crowds as efficiently as possible. We will be equipped with bells, horns, whistles or other noise-making trinkets to assist ourselves in navigating up and down Parliament Hill. Plus, people generally move aside when they see a running cart.
With the abundance of activity across downtown and the difficulty finding a place to sit, it is easy to get tired. For example, if you’re celebrating at the Parliament buildings, then go to the Rideau Center for some shopping, then Elgin Street for dinner, then to Major’s Hill Park to watch the fireworks and finally head back to the Rideau Center to catch a bus, you’ve accumulated a lot of walking miles over the course of the day. Rickshaws are a perfect way to give your legs a rest and make sure you still have the energy to enjoy all the festivities. Go for a rickshaw ride and you’ll have the perfect opportunity to kick back, relax and enjoy the celebrations from a comfortable position.
Many people are heading downtown on Canada Day to see Prince William and Kate Middleton. For a brief time, you can also see what it feels like to be treated like royalty. Rickshaw rides are flexible; in other words, they can be whatever you want them to be. You have the control to decide where to go, what route to take, what music to listen to on the ride, and have someone to carry you there while you relax, eat your lunch or chat with your friends or family – now that’s royal treatment!
Each year, our Canada Day rickshaw decorations get more and more extreme. For example, last year, I covered myself head-to-toe in red paint! While this is fun for us and increases our visibility, it also makes some excellent Canada Day photos. So, if you see a rickshaw runner this Friday, get your camera out and start shooting! You can upload any pictures you take to our Facebook page. Who knows? We might one day ask to use your picture on some of our publications.
This reason for taking a rickshaw ride can stand all by itself. What is better than whipping through the streets of downtown on a man-powered roller coaster? Our rickshaws are equipped with iPods and speakers, and our runners are trained to do various jumps and tricks to make the ride as exciting as possible. You’ll be downtown to celebrate and have some fun, so add a rickshaw ride to your itinerary! No one ever disembarks with disappointment!