Aug 9, 2023 - News

Ask Axios: Why can't RAGBRAI be held in cooler months?

Eric Doll and his son Gavin, 10, participated in this year's RAGBRAI. Photo: Courtesy of Eric

"Does RAGBRAI have to be held during the hottest time of the year in Iowa? — Eric Doll, WDM

Zoom in: Fall or spring would offer seasonal change and interest to the ride while eliminating some of the pitfalls of summer, Doll writes in to Axios.

  • Summer is peak construction season and the plastic water bottle usage "is obscene," he says.

State of play: Holding the ride when public schools are still in session would make the event almost impossible to plan, Anne Lawrie, director of RAGBRAI's cycling division, tells Axios.

  • The event leans heavily on educational facilities, students and staff in hosting or providing rider services.
  • And increased activity around school drop off sites would be difficult to safely manage during class times, she adds.

The bottom line: You're gonna keep sweatin', Eric.

Editor's note: This story first appeared in the Axios Des Moines newsletter.

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