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Carriage Rides Give Old-Fashioned View of Holiday Lights

Wayne Duncan makes memories for people who want to see the holiday lights at Krug Park from the seats of a horse-drawn carriage.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Holiday Park, the seasonal light display at Krug Park, is a Christmas tradition for many in St. Joseph.

But some make a tradition of not driving through it, but doing it the old fashioned way; in a horse-drawn carriage.

"It's a great ambiance.  You can't beat it.  This time of year, you're building memories that are going to last a lifetime.  What better way to do it?" said carriage rider Ben Doornink.

The carriage is from Duncan Carriages, and Wayne Duncan is the driver.

Duncan makes a living around his horses, and he says this is one of his favorite times of year.

"It just makes dreams come true, Duncan said.  "Everybody comes up and they're excited to take a carriage ride.  Then you add the lights to it, and it doesn't get any better than that."

Wayne's carriage has two horsepower; but the horse themselves, Tower and Shrek, are absolutely gigantic.

"They are Percheron draft horses," Duncan said.  "They actually came out of a six-horse hitch.  They're almost twenty hands tall and weigh about a ton apiece."

It can be a bumpy ride, but you get a great view of the lights.

Sixty dollars gets you the full tour of Holiday Park.

For a little less, and he'll still take you on a romantic ride down below.

Duncan says there's no better way to see holiday park.

"It makes memories," he said.  "It is old-fashioned, of a time gone by.  It's romantic.  It's family.  You get in there without a heater and you're going to have to snuggle up and stay warm."

Staying warm might be important, considering that temperatures this time of year are freezing and there's snow on the ground.

"Going back to your memories as a kid, you always remember the things that are out of the ordinary," Doonink said.  "You can go through the park in the car, and it's still great memories.  But with this, you can make those memories last the test of time.  The carriage, the cold, being with family, that's the way to do it right there."

Duncan will be at Holiday Park on Thursday and Friday starting at 6:00pm.

He said he might be out Monday and Tuesday as well, weather permitting.

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