10:08 PM EDT, May 14, 2012
Covered wagon rides are coming to Virginia's Explore Park this summer, as leaders of the park look for more public- private partnerships.
Spiritriders Covered Wagon Rides will hitch up a team of mules beginning Memorial Day weekend. Wagon rides will be available by reservation through early November. The program is one of the first public-private partnerships that Explore leaders hope to develop on the property.
Mikel Carmon is with Spiritriders Covered Wagon Rides. "I'm thrilled," Carmon told WDBJ7. "I've heard a couple of comments that nobody wanted to be first, and I'm thrilled to be first. And I guess I'm kind of a pioneer in that way. It's great to have Lester and Festus the mules, kind of break the ground for everybody, if you will."
Executive Director Debbie Pitts says Explore's plan for the future is built on a business model of public-private partnerships. "By creating partnerships and business opportunities for other folks to use the venues that we already have created here," Pitts said, "is a win-win all the way around."
The Ladies of Lake will provide musical entertainment. The wagon rides will also include catered meals and a healthy serving of history.
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