State College, PA - Centre County - Central Pennsylvania - Home of Penn State University

Pedicab Business Goes Green for the Holidays

by and on December 21, 2013 12:00 PM

Driving through the snowy streets of State College last week, a brightly colored rickshaw-like apparatus suddenly appeared in front of me.

The operator motioned for me to pass him and I hesitated. It was dark and the street was slushy.

It took a moment to realize that I was looking at a bicycle with a box attached for passengers.

Imagine my surprise when I received an email from Todd Miner the next day. He said he had read one of my articles and thought I might be interested in his business. Curiosity drove me to reply and ask some questions regarding his work.

Miner said he first thought about bringing bike taxis or “pedicabs” to State College after a trip to California. He researched and learned that the bike taxis are popular in many larger cities in the United States and have been used for centuries in Asia and Europe.

He says, “I felt there might be a market for the pedicabs in the State College area, especially with the university here. They are “green” and they are convenient. A bike taxi is faster than walking and there is no waiting for a bus or cab.”

Miner started his business in April 2012, and at first he considered the season for it to run from April until the last home football game ended. Some decorated Pedicabs that he had seen were the impetus to add some festive touches to his taxis for Halloween, Valentine’s Day and Christmas.

From now until Jan. 2, 2014, Vamos Lion Chariot is offering “sleigh” rides — downtown on the holiday-adorned lion chariot. Listen to carols as you pass by the holiday displays downtown and on campus.

“I wanted to create more of an entertainment genre that would fit State College,” explains Miner. “I could see my cabs carrying a couple to a downtown date, either as a destination, or as a special event tour of the campus and local streets.”

Clearly the decorations and the snow give such a tour a particular draw during the holiday season.

Miner’s background is in meteorology and he works part-time at AccuWeather. It seems that might come in quite handy with a job that involves pedaling people around in the snow.

A unique experience awaits you if you decide to use the services of Vamos Lion Chariot. You can call and make an appointment for a special occasion or, if you spot Miner and his “chariot” along the streets, shout “Vamos!” and climb aboard.

Click HERE for information about prices or you can call, (814) 404-2782.

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This story was produced by the staff at the Centre County Gazette. It was re-published with permission. The Centre County Gazette is a weekly publication, available at many locations around Centre County every Thursday morning.

Connie Cousins covers Centre County for the Gazette.
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