A former youth pastor is behind a Winnipeg summer staple offering a different experience for couples and families.
Chad Celaire and his wife Kim own an outdoor service called Bee2gether Tandem Bike Rentals and Sales, but many people just call it Bee2gether Bikes.
"We started back in 2007 with one location at The Forks in Winnipeg. I was the only one working it and it was quite an endeavour," says Celaire.
They had four tandem bikes but they now offer over 100 bicycles and have 25 staff.
"We have three locations. We added Assiniboine Park and Birds Hill Park on the beach."
Celaire moved to Winnipeg back in 2002 and was a youth minister in the city up until three years ago when his son was born. He and his wife now have two children.
When COVID hit, Celaire and his wife didn't know what to expect.
"It was very stressful initially. We usually start in May, so we had a lot of time to stew on how this would affect us. But a lot of my friends were telling me 'you'll probably have the busiest year of your life," he says.
To Celaire's delight, this turned out to be true. With limited activities for Manitobans, outdoor activities saw a spike in popularity.
"We were able to open and we saw right off the bat, we were seeing a lot more people coming to us than usual. In that regard, it's been a good year for us and we're expecting the same this year."
Bee2gether is usually open from May until mid-September, however, because of the beautiful initial spring weather, they were able to open up on March 12.
In the winter months, Celaire normally sings and performs for crowds at Farmers Markets or Personal Care Homes with Christmas music in December or jazz music.