Delegates from 40 different area communities were in Webster City Saturday morning to learn all about their roles in the 2012 RAGBRAI event.
"These towns are pass-through communities," said T.J. Juskiewicz, RAGBRAI director. "We named the eight overnight towns back in January. And all of the towns in between, like Kamrar and Lehigh, they are going to be here today to learn how to be a successful RAGBRAI pass-through town."
More than 100 people gathered at Fuller Hall where Juskiewicz and other RAGBRAI officials outlined the plans for the July 22-28 trek across the state. Riders will spend the night in Webster City on July 24 before moving on to Marshalltown the next day.
- Daily Freeman-Journal photo by Anne Blankenship
More than 100 representatives of 2012 RAGBRAI pass-through communities were in Webster City Saturday for an informational meeting.
Juskiewicz said the 15,000 or more riders that pass-through small communities along the route can have a big impact economically on those towns.
"There's a tremendous impact," he said. "Obviously, the churches and youth groups in those towns are going to be serving the masses. So when 15,000 ride through the town, they may not serve them all, but they'll serve a great many people."
"If they serve 5,000 people in the town, that's a great economic impact for them. And they get to showcase what that community has to offer," he said. "This is a chance to introduce their town to a lot of people."
He said that the pass-through communities offer a different feel for the riders than the overnight towns.
"Along the way, the riders are going to stop about every 10 miles and they'll really have a chance to learn about the different towns in Iowa," he said. Juskiewcz said the riders have about seven or eight stops each day along the route.
"It kind of refuels them. They get off their bikes and eat something, maybe listen to a little music before they get on their bike," he said.
Lehigh, Stratford, Kamrar, Jewell, Story City and Roland are the local pass-through communities, according to the official route map.
Webster City RAGBRAI officials said volunteers are still needed to help in the planning and implementation of the activities for the July 24 overnight stay. To register to volunteer, or to register as vendor or food vendor, send an email to email@example.com or visit the Daily Freeman-Journal website, www.freemanjournal.net, and fill out the online registration form.
Contact Anne Blankenship at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 832-4350.