Just over a year after launching the Detroit Cycle Pub, the couple behind the bicycle bar is launching Michigan's first Cycle Boat.
Nick Blaszczyk and his wife, Jody, first launched the Detroit Cycle Pub when they were looking to start a business.
They came up with the idea for the cycle boat through growing up in Michigan and being surrounded by the Great Lakes.
"We live in the Great Lakes and it's so nice to be on the water, we thought, wouldn't it be fun to have a bike on the water, a cycle boat?" Blaszczyk said. "We talked about it and were kidding around about it, then somebody called me and said, 'You know they make cycle boats?'"
That's when he and his wife began reaching out and found a company that made the boats. They purchased one and became the first cycle boat in Michigan, and one of the first in the country.
"So many people love to be on the water. We live in one of the most beautiful water states in the country, but some people never have the opportunity to get on the water," he added. "Everyone knows someone with a boat, but you never want to ask someone to go on their boat. This gives people the opportunity to get out there!"
According to Blaszczyk, they will launch the cycle boat on May 20 at WaterMark Bar and Grille in St. Clair Shores. It holds up to 16 people, and only a minimum of six people are needed to pedal the boat. They are currently taking reservations on their website, detroitcycleboat.com, for two-hour tours.
After getting the boat, they had to work with the U.S. Coast Guard to make sure everything was regulated and get approval. Then, they had to find the right place to launch it. Blaszczyk said WaterMark was the perfect partner.
"It was a great relationship right away and we're prefect together," he said. "They have a patio, bar, and will offer drink and food specials for riders."
People who book the Detroit Cycle Boat bring their own snacks and drinks, which you can get at WaterMark. There are two Yeti Coolers and a bar built in, and the company provides both the captain and the deckhand.
Blaszczyk's passion for both Detroit and Michigan were important when it came to launching both Detroit Cycle Pub and Detroit Cycle Boat.
"I think the biggest thing for us with the bikes and the boats is that we're proud to be from Detroit, and all of our stuff is made in America," he said. "We're really excited. We want everyone to come out and experience the boat."
Another important factor for the boat was making it a fun and affordable experience for everyone.
"Everyone can come out, if you want to bring the family, kids, grandparents, it's good for everyone," Blaszczyk said.
Prices for the boat begin at $450 for two hours on Monday-Thursday and $525 Friday-Sunday. That works out to just over $28 per person for Monday-Thursday and $33 per person on the weekends.
According to Blaszczyk, there is only one boat right now, but he's pretty sure they'll be adding a second boat sometime this summer. He also said they are planning to expand to Traverse City in 2018 with the Traverse City Cycle Boat.
If a group is planning on booking both a tour on both the Detroit Cycle Pub and Cycle Boat, there will be a discount, according to Blaszczyk.
They do expect bookings to sell quickly, as they did last year when the Detroit Cycle Pub was launched.