Fredericksburg Segway Tours
The Fredericksburg area has always been an attraction to tourist and residents alike, but getting around to see all that is offered can be a difficult task. One of the newer businesses in downtown has taken this situation and not only made getting around to all this area has to offer easier, but has made it a lot of fun. The business is Old Town Seg Tours which teaches individuals how to ride segways and provides tours on them.
My first thought upon arriving at the offices on Princess Anne Street was,”Why is a fifty six year old man risking his neck riding one of these things just for the sake of an article?”
Much to my surprise (and relief) riding a segway is not difficult and is very relaxing. Operating on gyroscopes, forward and backward movement is initiated by the slightest movement of ones body. In order to hover, or stay still, merely standing relaxed and upright is all that is required. Because the gyroscopes are extremely sensitive to tension from the body, relaxation is a must.
Under the able instruction of Jennifer Dougherty, the tour manager and our tour guide, we soon had the skills necessary to go up and down hills, around corners and over the many bumps that are found in the historic section of downtown Fredericksburg. By the time we reached Fauquier Street, Brian, my tour companion, and I were challenging each other as to who would be the first to make the segway reach its maximum speed of twelve and one half miles per hour. Often we would lag behind the tour guide just to be able race in order to catch up.
Growing up in the era of GTO’s and Corvettes with their large, fast engines, never did I imagine anything could be this much fun without leaving behind a carbon footprint that was a total mess. Speed is relative. While driving a car at a rate of ten to twelve miles per hour it may seem as if the entire world has come to a standstill and destinations will never be reached. To go that same speed on a segway is totally different. There is no windshield or automobile body to block the air passing by. It is a state of exhilaration that enlivens the senses and leaves one hoping the destination never will be reached.
To add to this, all tour guides are certified Fredericksburg historians providing a wealth of knowledge about the area that makes the cost of the tour more than worth its while. Starting at the corner of corner of Charlotte and Princess Anne Streets the tour took us down Sophia Street across William Street and back up to Princess Anne, while stopping to see and discuss the many historical buildings and sights of interest along the way. Continuing up Fauquier Street to the other side of Fredericksburg, the layout of the city became a lot clearer and the role different people and historical events played brought to light by the knowledge our tour guide provided
I have lived in this area since 1991 and yet have never knew there were so many side roads and interconnecting ways downtown. The tour not only was one of historical facts, but it also proved to be a good lesson in the geography of the area. Between the thrill of the ride and learning the history and geography, I found my intellectual and thrill seeker appetite sated, at least until the next time I have an opportunity to take a seg tour.