The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Features

July 28, 2012

RAGBRAI riders make final stretch to Clinton

CLINTON — Having survived the heat, hills, and headwinds of the week, Friday was one of those gifts that are given every so often on RAGBRAI.

I am Rod Schultz (Camanche High School class of 1986) and I’m leading a group of alumni from Grinnell College, where I work. It has been quite an adventure for all of them, and now I see the bonding and hear the stories that come from a week’s adventure that has been described as “tribal.”  

We left the western part of Cedar Rapids from our group campsite after a team photograph. Since we could sleep in, it allowed for a more relaxing day.

By the time we rode along the river and to the Czech Village, it was time to eat breakfast and take in the Bohemian culture of this beautiful area. After some Kolaches and breakfast pizza, followed by some accordion and polka music, we finally left town and climbed our first series of hills, hills, hills.

There are ways to convince yourself it is OK, when you use words like scenic instead of hills, and cooling breeze instead of headwind.  

Our arrival into Mount Vernon was easy as the northwest wind gently pushed us along. After being greeted by the Mustangs cheerleaders, I arrived on the Hilltop at Cornell College and met up with former Grinnell College employee and now president of Cornell, Jonathan Brand. The main street was packed to the rim with colorful cyclists and the festivities were entertaining.  

We rolled north and started climbing hills with those “cooling breezes,” enjoying the scenery along the way. Sometimes the portable toilets are busy in town, so the cornfields along the road tend to look like a scene from “Field of Dreams,” substitute cyclists coming of the corn.

One of our riders from Washington, D.C. who really enjoys the day at a nice pace summed it up best by saying, “I start the hills slow and then taper off.”

That is the beauty of this great ride, people of all ages, strengths and abilities go along for an adventure across it all.  

I’ve met so many fascinating people along the way, carrying on conversations on all topics. You never know who you will meet and how farfetched the stories will get. 

The day was so mild that our team has been sitting around talking and laughing without even going to the showers yet.  Old friendships have been rekindled.

Since it was also College Spirit Day, the jerseys have been fun to see and everyone asks about the colleges and universities, promoting the value of higher education all the way.

So, yes, it is tribal.  It is an adventure. It is RAGBRAI for 40-years now and my photo with John Karras on the century loop is a great souvenir. 

I am looking forward to ending in Clinton where my bicycling fascination all started with the River Bend Bicycle Club.

My ninth year is almost done. A new friend described it best when he said, “RAGBRAI is like joining the circus. It’s fun but then after a week you realize you need to go home.” 

1
Text Only
Features
  • 4-17-14 Trees forever photo 2 Let it grow (with Video)

    CLINTON - A new generation of trees will be planted by a young generation of Irish. Wednesday during class, Lisa Golden's Prince of Peace Prep third-graders continued their year-long biology education with the help of Clinton's Trees Forever organiza

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • Communities prep for hunts CLINTON -- Easter weekend is nearly here and two local organizations are calling all children for the hunting event of the year -- Easter egg hunting that is. Both Camanche and Fulton, Ill., will host Easter egg hunts Saturday, each at different time

    April 17, 2014

  • Women's Expo set for Tuesday at Wild Rose CLINTON -- It is time again to gather the girlfriends and head out to the Ultimate Spring Women's Expo at the Wild Rose Event Center in Clinton. The third annual expo from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, hosted by the Clinton Herald, offers an opportuni

    April 14, 2014

  • Fulton housing loan Program to assist Fulton resident FULTON, Ill. -- Brian Hollenback and Beth Payne delivered good news last week, traveling to seven cities, three counties and two states, ending their journey in Fulton. Hollenback, who is the Northwestern Illinois Housing Coalition president, and its

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stutting Camanche native tapped to head North Scott schools CLINTON -- A Camanche native will return to his roots this June, after being selected as the new superintendent for the North Scott Community School District. Joe Stutting, a 1987 graduate of Camanche High School, has been away from his hometown for

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • preview-1.jpg Luau raises funds to support programming

    CLINTON -- Hundreds of supporters and volunteers gathered Friday night to endorse a lifesaving organization in the Gateway area. The 10th annual Gateway Area Red Cross Luau kicked off the night at the Tuscany Event Center at Rastrelli's with a buffet

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Anderson Meet Your Neighbor: Gardening serves multiple purposes

    CLINTON -- For Kathy Anderson, gardening is something she has always enjoyed. "For as long as I remember, I have been obsessed with being outside," Kathy said. "My mother never had to ask twice for me to go outside and play." At 5 and 6 years old, Ka

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stepping forward: The real Colbert

    Letterman changed the late-night TV game between his run on NBC's "Late Night" and starting the "Late Show" franchise in 1993. And while it's tough to replace a pop-culture icon, Colbert, in terms of pedigree and sense of humor, makes the most sense.

    April 11, 2014

  • Longman.jpg Stars and stripes to fly at half-staff

    Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad has ordered all flags in Iowa to be flown at half-staff from 5 p.m. today until 8 a.m. Monday in honor of a World War II airman, whose remains were recovered more than 70 years after being killed in action.
    Lt. Louis L. Longman, a 26-year old at the time he was last seen April 16, 1944, was a Clinton native. He served with the U.S. Army Air Corps Air Force and when he was last seen, his unit was returning from a B-25 bomber escort mission over Hollandia, New Guinea.

    April 11, 2014 2 Photos

  • 4-10-14 Take Back the Night photos 04 Take Back the Night seeks change

    CLINTON -- Marcia Lathrop and Kris Ayala have witnessed and experienced sexual abuse and domestic violence. According to Clinton YWCA Executive Director Shannon Sander-Welzien, someone is raped in this country every 1.3 seconds. On average, a child w

    April 10, 2014 5 Photos

Clinton Herald Photos


Browse, buy and submit pictures with our photo site.

Facebook