Fort Madison preps as final stop for 41st RAGBRAI bicycle race - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Fort Madison preps as final stop for 41st RAGBRAI bicycle race

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FORT MADISON, Ia. (WGEM) -

The city of Fort Madison is gearing up for one of the biggest events it's hosted in a decade.

The 41st annual Registered Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa, known as RAGBRAI, starts Sunday, and ends in Fort Madison next Saturday.

But preparations are already underway Thursday night.

The race starts Sunday at the Missouri River on Iowa's western border in Council Bluffs, seven days later, it will end at the Mississippi River in Fort Madison.

It's an event so large, that it takes more than 200 local volunteers to pull it off. And Thursday night, the RAGBRAI volunteer committee met to figure out the best way to get that done.

"We are expecting over 10,000 bike riders to come through town on July 27," said Angie Budnik the Fort Madison RAGBRAI volunteer co-chair.

That's why Budnik was prepping more than 30 volunteers that came out for Thursday night's RAGBRAI volunteer orientation.

Cortney Liggitt, who has participated in RAGBRAI before, was in attendance. Liggitt who is also a nurse, is eager to be on the other side of the ride this time.

"I'm going to help with the medical tent and whatever needs they need, any medical attention I will help with," said Liggitt.

Budnik says volunteers will do everything from helping riders park, to getting them registered.

"We want to make sure that all of the volunteers understand exactly what's going to happen on the day of the event. Understand the layout of the town, where everything is going to be located," said Budnik.

But Budnik says, even though they've been prepping for months, it's going to come down to these last couple of days, to get all the help they need, and they're looking for more volunteers.

"The big need is basically to be able to know our town to direct people, to answer their questions. We also have some great things about Fort Madison that we want to make sure they impart upon our guests here so they are excited about the city, and someday maybe come back," said Budnik.

If you want to volunteer, you can either call the Fort Madison Chamber of Commerce to get signed up, or on the day of the race, there will be a volunteer booth set up in Riverview Park.

Information on RAGBRAI:

  • This year's route is just over 400 miles long from Council Bluffs to Fort Madison.
  • Riders travel about 50 miles each day.
  • 2003 was the last time Fort Madison served as the finish line.

For more information on RAGBRAI click here.

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