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Seeing the city the Segway way

A Segway tour of downtown Houston sounds like a great idea.

The tour, led by Apollo Scooters proprietor Matthew Creede, is the first to exploit the scenic secrets of the city’s heart. Similar tours are offered in San Antonio, Austin and Galveston, and a second Houston tour company, SegCity Segway Tours, offers a nature excursion at Burroughs Park.


Creede has offered variations on his downtown tour for more than a year, but only in the past few months, he said, has the formula been perfected. His company usually offers three bayou tours a day, and plans to begin a evening tour this week.

The 2½ -hour outings typically begin at the Wortham Center, then wend their way past such landmarks as the bayou-side statues of former President George H.W. Bush and his secretary of state, James Baker, the concrete cellist at Lyric Centre and the refurbished Market Square.

Occasionally the Segway tourists make their way to Allen’s Landing, Houston’s historic heart, or out along Buffalo Bayou to Eleanor Tinsley Park. All told, the tours cover about eight miles. The vehicles have a top speed of about 8 mph, although with the twists and turns of the bayou, they rarely travel that fast. The tours are designed with an eye for visuals, and stunning cityscapes demand frequent stops for photos

Creede, whose nonstop patter ranges from Sam Houston, to Emily Morgan, the so-called “yellow rose of Texas” to the ghosts at downtown bars and restaurants, said he learns as much on the tours as he teaches.

“Most Houstonians who go on the tour, after about 20 minutes they’ll confess, ‘I’ve lived here 30 years but never have seen any of this before,'” Creede said.

I know Segways are kind of dorky, but you can cover a lot more ground with them than you could on foot, and you’d be able to actually see more of it than you would in a bus. It hits a sweet spot, really. And I totally believe Creede gets that reaction from folks who live here. I’ve been to many of the places mentioned in the story, but not with someone who knows more than the limited amount about them that I do. But any city worth living in will have a lot of history that many people will have forgotten about or never knew. I’m glad there are folks out there doing what they can to help us remember.

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One Comment

  1. Ginger says:

    They have these in Austin and San Antonio too.