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Horse-drawn history tour carriage rides in Brooksville

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Imagine enjoying a festive horse-drawn wagon ride through the history of Brooksville this holiday season; a trip through yesteryear enjoyed in lavish yuletide surroundings. This year, the Brooksville Main Street Christmas carriage ride will come with an exciting Brooksville history tour option. Select carriage rides will include a tour led by local historian Jan Knowles, who serves on the Brooksville Main Street programs committee, and Andrea Read, special events coordinator of the Brooksville Main Street program, will also be riding along with families to tell the stories about historic homes and businesses they pass along their travels. Carriage rides will start at 6 pm and will depart from the Brooksville Courthouse on December 14, 15, 21 and 22.

“We started offering the history tour option in 2021 because people would come back from their ride and ask questions about the houses,” explained Natalie Kahler, executive director of Brooksville Main Street. “Jan was always there as a volunteer so we would send them over to talk to her. We decided we might as well put her right in the carriage! This year, Andrea Read will also be doing some of the tours. As a seventh generation Brooksvillian who is very passionate about the city, Andrea will also have great stories to tell.”

Jan Knowles is pleased to offer this unique historical journey as a part of this year’s carriage ride experience. “We have so many historic homes and businesses in Brooksville, some dating as far back as the 1800s,” she explained. “We have written histories of so many of them, and at least 30 of them will be featured on this 20-minute tour.”

Knowles and Read will be adorned in historic dress for the duration of the ride, conducted in a classic wagon decorated for the holidays. “Only I’ll be leaving hoops out of my vintage skirts,” Knowles said with a chuckle, “to make more room in the carriage.”

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The tour will encompass Main, Irene and Olive streets. Guests will be free to ask questions, and also will receive information regarding a myriad of Main Street neighborhood programs, such as the Mobile Mural program.

Get your tickets for the Christmas Carriage Rides at the following link:
www.welovebvl.org/christmas-in-brooksville. Tickets are $15 for the history tour, which is the same price as the sleigh rides. The wagon tour without the historical option is $10.

“So much of the time, people sail down 41 and 50, and they might not have a clue as to the history they’re passing by,” said Knowles. “On this tour, they get the history.”

For this unique experience, select the “History Tour” option!

Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey is a features journalist and author who is the winner of Florida Press Association honors and a certificate of appreciation from LINCS (Family Support Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force) and Sunrise Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Center for her newspaper coverage of these issues. She graduated cum laude from Ball State University in Muncie, Ind., with a journalism major and English/sociology minor, and previously wrote for publications that include the Pasco editions of The Tampa Tribune and Tampa Bay Times. A native of Indiana, she lives in Florida.
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