Nothing is more romanitic that a carriage ride. Read the original about Grand Junction’s best way to experience this holiday magic here:
Talley-Ho For Holiday Magic
By Cecily Whiteside
There is something magical about a horse-drawn carriage ride. Joe Burtard has known that since the age of fourteen, when he began is own carriage business in 1998: The business he still has today, and which we have the privilege of enjoying Downtown this holiday season. His passion for his horses and driving carriages has lasted throughout the years. You can find him at weddings, doing wine and fruit tours around Colorado, or giving historical tours from his high seat holding the reins. Even a pub-crawl takes on a whole new meaning when the carriage is waiting outside after each pint!
Thanks to Downtown Grand Junction, Joe will be giving free horse-drawn carriage rides every Saturday and Sunday from noon til two, from now until Christmas. Pick up locations will alternate; in front of Mesa Theatre or Café Sol, depending on the weekend.
The horses Joe will be driving are named “Commander” and “Chief.” He says it all together: “Commander ‘n Chief,” with a smile in his voice. They are black Percherons, a French bred war horse. As a breed, the Percheron has been highly prized throughout its history, and therefore coddled by their owners. According to the Percheron Association of America, this has caused intimate and warm relationships with their human families, making them easy to work with and great with the public. Added to this is their great strength and endurance. They were bred to carry heavily armored knights, then “drafted” to pull heavy passenger and mail coaches. These days, with diesel trucks doing much of the heavy-duty work that they used to do, Joe’s Commander ‘n Chief get to pull the lucky citizens of Grand Junction instead.
Joe’s horses have all come from Amish communities in the Eastern U.S. where the breed has been flourishing. Joe personally raises, trains and drives his own horses, who are almost 19 hands high with a combined weight of over 3600. Strong but gentle, these horses are the perfect accompaniment to a trip downtown this holiday season. Come see Downtown Grand Junction from a new vantage point: above the fray, listening to the clip-clop of hooves. Harken back to the time of the horse.
“When I am traveling in carriage, or walking after a good meal, or during the night when I cannot sleep; it is on such occasions that ideas flow best and most abundantly.” – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
“Many people have sighed for the “good old days” and regretted the “passing of the horse,” but today, when only those who like horses own them, it is a far better time for horses.” – W. Anderson
“The horse. Here is nobility without conceit, friendship without envy, beauty without vanity. A willing servant, yet never a slave.” – Ronald Duncan]
And indeed, a horse who bears himself proudly is a thing of such beauty and astonishment that he attracts the eyes of all beholders. No one will tire of looking at him as long as he will display himself in his splendor.
Published with permission of Grand Valley Magazine