LE MARS, Iowa (KCAU) – Saturday night it was announced that the Ice Cream Capital of the World will be the starting place in this year’s RAGBRAI.
Six months from now the streets of Le Mars will be full of thousands of bicyclists. As the riders prepare for the miles ahead businesses in Le Mars are gearing up as well.
“Bikes and beers they kinda go together,” said Ben Sitzmann, the co-owner of Wise I.
One of Le Mars’s newest attractions Wise I brewery has already started hosting RAGBRAI celebrations.
“Everybody in here was really waiting for them to say what the first town was so when they did everyone was cheering it was really exciting,” said Aislinn Durr, the taproom manager at Wise I.
Saturday’s announcement not coming as a shock. Many had heard rumblings the ride may start in their town but now the ride is officially on to get prepared for the estimated 10,000 guests.
“I hear breweries usually sell out of beer in any of the towns that are an overnight stay or a starting point I’m gonna probably start ramping up production next month,” said Sitzmann.
RAGBRAI will take place from July 19th to July 27th during national ice cream month, a time the people of Le Mars are very familiar with.
“The renovation that we had our grand reopening for this past summer couldn’t have come at a better time,” said Shannon Rodenburg the senior manager of Wells Business Center and Ice Cream Parlor.
Wells Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor already talking about serving cool cones to the tired cyclists along with other surprises in store.
“I’m hoping to participate in a number of communities but wells will definitely have a hand in the activities that go on here,” said Rodenburg.
Some of those activities taking place 15 years ago the last time RAGBRAI began in Le Mars.
“I kinda remember bikes riding around and people in and out of stores some camping on the streets and just having a lot of fun it was fun to watch them,” said Patty Mullally owner of Lally’s Eastside Restaurant.
Bringing with it the thrill of highly anticipated statewide event and a boost to the local economy.
“It’s a good thing for Le Mars to have all these people come in because it will bring in a lot of business and a lot of participating stores will be open,” said Mullally.
Registration for RAGBRAI is still underway they will be accepting 8,500 bikers for the entire week trip and 1, 500 daily bikers each day.