The Transylvania Times -

Leap Frog Tours Hosts Ribbon Cutting


October 2, 2017

Ray Adams

Leap Frog Tours recently held a ribbon cutting. On hand were (left to right) Stanley Walker, Adam DeWitte, Beth Best, Josh Chambers, Mark Merritt, Kim Turpin (co-owner), Jen Brauer (marketing manager), Amber Webb, Clark Lovelace, Don DeBiase, Julia Dunn and Chaz Breedlove. Not pictured is the other co-owner, Ann Smith.

Leap Frog Tours, LLC, a new tour and transportation business operating in Western North Carolina (WNC), hosted a ribbon cutting event in conjunction with the Brevard/

Transylvania Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, Sept. 21, from 4-5 p.m. in the Ecusta Brewing Company parking lot (Pisgah Forest location). Light refreshments, including Ecusta beer, were served.

Leap Frog Tours was founded by Kim Turpin and Ann Smith in December 2016 with the goal of showcasing the best of Western North Carolina, ranging from beer to art and everything in between.

The company owns two 15-passenger Ford Transit vans and provides three key services:

•"Click and Join" Tours-These tours offer a set itinerary and price point with a typical head count of six to 12 participants, allowing for interaction and education during the tour. Guests can visit to view available tours and book directly online. An example of a "click and join" tour is our Brevard Outlier Beer Tour which takes guests to Oskar Blues, Ecusta Brewing Company and Brevard Brewing Company. On the tour, guests hear how each of these breweries make their unique craft beer and enjoy a flight or pint of beer at each brewery.

•Customized Tour Services-If you would like to do one of the "click and join" tours but the date or time doesn't work for your group, they will work with you to select the date and time that suits your itinerary. In addition, they also work with clients to create one-of-a-kind tour experiences tapping into their extensive knowledge of the area.

•Transportation Services - Leap Frog Tours provides one-way and round-trip transportation for groups of all sizes, including airport transfers to/from the Asheville Regional Airport, shuttle services for private functions, like weddings, as well as transportation to excursion activities.

Leap Frog Tours launched its Brevard Beer Tour in early 2017 and was the only tour company offering a beer tour in Brevard.

According to Mark Merritt, business development manager for Leap Frog Tours, "When I approached Oskar Blues, Ecusta, and Brevard Brewing back in January to develop the Brevard Beer Tour, all three breweries were immediately on board. The beer scene is huge in Asheville, but there are also great breweries in the communities outside of Asheville proper, like Brevard. We wanted to showcase this untapped segment of the brewery scene. We are a growing business, and these three breweries, as well as Brevard and Transylvania County, have been very supportive of our efforts."

Leap Frog Tours wants to make sure that locals and visitors alike enjoy the breweries safely and responsibly.

Smith, said, "People need a safe way to get to and from the many breweries that are further out in WNC. One of our goals is to make sure that our roads are safe for everyone who lives and visits our area. So, we want people to have fun, and leave the driving to us!"

Following on the success of its Brevard Beer Tour, Leap Frog Tours is currently developing several other tour and transportation offerings in Brevard and Transylvania County.

Merritt said, "I've been meeting with several different organizations and businesses about developing some really interesting new tour and transportation offerings. As we roll-out these new offerings, we will strengthen our commitment to the area."


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