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    Stay connected during RAGBRAI

    July 20th, 2011

    Interested in RAGBRAI and want to stay in the know on what’s going on?

    Well we’ve scoured Twitter for the best ways to stay informed, and have come up with a few people and key words that you should follow to stay in the know.

    @RAGBRAICVILLE @RAGBRAIBoone @Grn_RAGBRAI @BikeAltoona @Dav_Ragbrai are the official Twitter handles for the overnight host cities of Coralville, Boone, Grinnell and Altoona, and Davenport respectively. Follow these to stay informed on what events are going as riders roll into their respective cities.

    @TJRAGBRAI TJ is the director of all of RAGBRAI. Be sure follow him throughout the week for a behind the scenes glimpse.

    @RAGBRAI_IOWA the “official” Twitter handle for RAGBRAI. Follow them to keep up with the official news of what’s going on with RAGBRAI.

    @3dudaks @SimpsonRagbrai Just 2 of the many teams that will be riding during the week. Follow them to get just a few perspectives on what life is like on the two-wheeled road.

    RAGBRAI iPhone App If you’re on RAGBRAI and want to see where your friends are, or if you’re at home and want to see how folks are doing out there then this app is for you. With events, course info and participant info, this app lets you know exactly what’s going on.

    Des M0ines Register Of course the Des Moines Register will have daily updates available for you as well on how the ride is going.

    So whether you’re missing out this year and want to feel like part of the fun. Or you’re riding and want to know how other people are doing. Then follow the people we suggested, or download the app and you’ll be set to take on open Iowa road.

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    RAGBRAI is coming! RAGBRAI is coming!

    July 18th, 2011

    This Saturday marks the beginning of the 39th annual RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa).

    RAGBRAI,

    Photo Credit:Andrea Melendez/The Register via ragbrai.com

    This year’s bike ride begins in Glenwood and travels across the state to end in Davenport. This year’s ride is said to be the 22nd easiest ride in history (only 17 rides have been tougher), with it being the 14th shortest (it’s 18 miles short of the average) and 24th flattest.

    One of the most exciting parts about RAGBRAI is the chance that riders have to visit towns in Iowa that they might not have with the overnight host towns.

    Atlantic is the first overnight host,with a population right over 7,000. Atlantic’s biggest claim to fame comes from them calling themselves the  “Coca-Cola Capital of Iowa” because of its bottling operations.

    At the end of day 2, riders will find themselves crashing in the town of  Carroll, home to 10,000 Iowans. Swan Lake State Park will offer riders good camping  and a new city aquatic center will give riders a chance to cool down after their long day of biking.

    The 3rd overnight visit for riders happens in Boone, population almost 13,000. Boone’s most popular attraction is the “Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad” which offers bikers a chance to sit and relax, instead of pedaling. Boone is also home to the famous Kate Shelley Bridge. The country’s longest and highest double track railroad bridge.

    Marking the halfway point is the town of Altoona, home to 13,000 people. After riders finish the day, they’ll have the opportunity to bet on some horse racing,play some poker or take a chance at the slot machines at Prairie Meadows. Or if they prefer, they can take in some excitement and cool down at Adventureland Amusement Park which is now home to Adventure Bay, a wonderful family-friendly water park.

    Next up is Grinnell, population 9,000. When riders visit Grinnell they’ll have a chance to visit the new swimming pool, try a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants, or visit Grinnell College, Iowa’s Ivy-League-esque college.

    The last overnight stop before hitting Davenport is the city of Coralville, the biggest overnight town with 17,000 citizens. Riders can visit the popular CoralRidge Mall and indulge in some shopping, eating and even ice skating if they choose.

    And of course, it all ends  with the tire dip in the Mississippi River in the city of Davenport. A couple of events make this an extra special end of the week city. As RAGBRAI rolls into town, the Quad Cities Times annual Bix7 Road Race, an international long distance road race, will be finishing up. This gives both runners and bikers a chance to celebrate their amazing accomplishments and enjoy their successes together.

    And if you haven’t heard yet, Tour de France multi-champion Lance Armstrong will again take part in RAGBRAI. According to a Des Moines Register article, he will most likely join the Live Strong team on the Tuesday/Wednesday or Wednesday/Thursday leg of the ride.

    For a full list of all the towns bikers will be pedaling through check out the list on RAGBRAI’s website.

    And if you’re looking for a bit of history about the big bike ride, check out a previous post we wrote here.

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    A great big bike ride

    July 29th, 2010

    Everyone has heard of the Tour De France, the world famous bike ride across France. But did you know RAGBRAI, Iowa’s own great bike ride has its own claim to fame?
    RAGBRAI, or the “Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa” is not only the oldest, but also the longest and largest bicycle touring event in the world!
    RAGBRAI was started in 1973, by two columnists at the Des Moines Register who challenged each other to ride across Iowa and write about what they saw. The very first year 300 people showed up and pitched tents on yards along the way, thus beginning a great tradition.
    This year, RAGBRAI will see about 10,000 riders make there way from Sioux City to Dubuque, making it the 3rd easiest ride in RAGBRAI’s history. This year riders will get to ride past the Grotto in West Bend, people boating on Clear Lake and the Field of Dreams in Dyersville.
    Along the way riders will be greeted by townsfolk happy to lend a hand. Whether it’s a day stop, where riders can relax for a few hours and enjoy homemade lemonade and some entertainment. Or a night stop where riders are welcomed into the homes of Iowans for a home cooked meal and a place to rest their head and feet for the night.
    Along the journey you’ll see thousands of bikes, traveling bike shops offering repairs, vans of team members offering refreshments and encouragement to their teams and plenty of crazy outfits and possibly crazy people.
    By the end of the journey, when the riders make the annual dip of the tire into the Missippi river, riders will have traveled 442 miles and climbed 14,527 feet ( a wimp in comparison to last years 22,000 feet).
    For more information on how to join next year, where else RAGBRAI stops this year or more history check out their website: www.ragbrai.com.

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