Article by Will Frazier for WakeUP Wake County
Many people think about riding the bus in practical terms: getting to work, beating traffic congestion, and having extra time to respond to emails. Increasingly, lots of folks in Raleigh are eager to use the bus for more recreational purposes. The R-line has made downtown pub crawls, dining, and entertainment a breeze. The problem arises when you want to take an evening trip anywhere else in the Triangle. Either you’re going to be driving yourself —which means finding and paying for parking, and securing a designated driver— or, well, you’re probably not going.
Natty Greene’s Pub and Brewing Company has helped to answer the question of what it would be like if there were an evening bus to, say, downtown Durham. The answer is - great! Natty Greene’s has launched “Bulls Buses” to ferry people to evening Durham Bulls games. A spot on one of these chartered buses provides a complete evening out for $25 which includes a ticket to the game, a hot dog, beer while aboard the bus, and a worry free ride with no parking hassles.
Right now, you can only catch a Bull's Bus a couple of times a month, but some local urbanites have started to use them to expand their reach, riding to eateries and bars for a night out in the Bull City. You can catch a few innings of baseball before enjoying a nightcap on the way home. Having ridden the bus to catch a baseball game last week, I have to say this seems preferable to driving and parking. The bus was packed so clearly there’s strong demand for this party-type excursion!
The Raleigh riders told me they’d rather forgo the hassles of driving and use this service in the absence of other evening transit options. Clearly transit is about more than efficient travel, it can be about fun too. And, for me, it really brought home how the availability of transit options can improve your quality of life
Check out a video documenting my experience on the Bull’s Bus!