Most Metro Detroiters know the third week in August brings a plethora of classic cars and spectators to Woodward Avenue for the annual Dream Cruise. But how many know about the other cruise that goes on during that time – the Kids’ Cruise?
The free event, sponsored by the Royal Oak Downtown Development Authority, runs Aug. 16 from 4 to 10 p.m. at Sixth Street and Center in Royal Oak. This year marks the third annual Kids’ Cruise.
The purpose for creating the event is twofold, said Stephanie McIntyre, event manager for the Royal Oak DDA. “One, to create an interest in a family-focused event, and also to draw people into our downtown,” she said, explaining that business can get pretty slow when everyone’s prepping for the world’s largest one-day automotive event on Woodward Avenue.
What’s in store? For car-loving youngsters, there’s a classic car display from the Dead Last Car Club. For those who want a more hands-on experience, there’s Explore-A-Truck, where kids can climb on and explore fire trucks, dump trucks, mail trucks, flat bed trucks and other favorites.
The ever-popular inflatable bouncy house and other rides will also be there for kids’ enjoyment. In fact, the DDA expanded the inflatable area this year since it’s been so popular in the past, McIntyre said. A rock-climbing wall is included in the inflatable area.
Rounding out the event are kid-friendly music concerts — including a performance by the Detroit School of Rock and Pop — specials at downtown business and an outdoor movie, “Gnomeo and Juliet,” at dusk.
So far, the event has been successful. “It’s been expanding every year,” McIntyre said. “We’re anticipating 6,000 people for this one. We like to say the stroller brigade comes downtown.”
For more information, visit www.downtownroyaloak.org.
By Pamela A. Zinkosky