As Emmetsburg prepares to host RAGBRAI for an overnight stay July 21, here are some thoughts about the annual event, compiled by veteran riders Greg and Steven Hoyman.These "RAGBRAI?Moments" are intended to give people some insight into RAGBRAI and what goes on behind the scenes.
Many of the bikers will be looking for housing. Some for medical reasons and some because they do not want to camp out. This works well in a small town because everyone is close but does not work in a larger town, since homes may be a long way from where things (activities) are at.
Some want 1. A shower, bed, bathroom. 2. Shower, bathroom, yard for tent.
Be sure you know what your guests are expecting.
Ask if they are registered riders, we should give registered riders first choice.
You can charge if you want but make that clear when agreeing to this (most do not)
Know if you are going to be home and if you are willing to let them in your home if you are not home.
Know how many people are going to be in group.
Get all this in writing.
Discuss with group your and their expectations.
Discuss when they will leave in morning, most will leave early.
Many people have done this before and have had a good experience.
Some will just show up that day asking to use your yard, be prepared with an answer.
Most RAGBRAI rider's camp. There are several large groups that have up to 1,000 people. These groups are very well organized and look after themselves. They come with support staff and may have their own showers and KYBOs. (Portable bathrooms, named after a company that used to serve RAGBRAI, stands for keep your bowls open)
The register brings 2 semis with luggage for about 2,000 people, most of which camp.
There are about 48 groups of 50 or more that will camp together.
The campers and groups are looking for the following in any order. 1. Location near activities 2. Location near showers 3. Location near KYBOs (Not too near, the opening and shutting of doors keep you up all night) 4. Shade, but not under large trees, since you don't want them to fall on you in storm 5. Food stand near is great. (RAGBRAI bikers are always eating)
church or food stand.