RAGBRAI XLIX registration is now open!

orange city town.

anyhow, i wonder what kind of town it is? and has ragbrai ever been there?Or used it as a starting town? I am excited just to be there this year.it was i will be a good ragbrai as i understand that this will be a bueatiful route. I wll start in this town and ride a few days

, and turn around and head back to sturgis. i meet a lot of people from iowa everyday who ride it all the time. they rave about how good it really is. I will buy some shirts and a few posters.I think i will get me a go pro just for the ride.I wonder what towns are a first on the route. Even ride through towns.The bike i will be riding is a fitness bike a fugi 1.1 22 lbs very nice. it has shimono 105’s on it.my problem is i have to find a person that will shuttle me in my van. thanks ride on!!!!!!

40 Replies

John Weber, January 29, 2017 at 8:54 am

You guys are going to love Orange City! It is a beautiful, clean town with nice people. It is steeped in Dutch heritage. Downtown has a beautiful park with miniature windmills(which will make for nice RAGBRAI pictures with your bike). We are not dry, but there aren’t many bars/restaurants downtown. In fact, there’s one. Don’t worry, we will have plenty of places to get refreshments and food, though. There is a bakery downtown, with great Dutch treats. And Woudstra’s Meat Market is a classic with the best brats in Iowa.
We are really looking forward to everyone coming. It’s going to be a long six month wait! Please come to the Tulip Festival in May if you want to check us out.


mootsman, January 29, 2017 at 9:02 am

It should be great to start in Iowa’s version of the OC. A bit far from the border but I’m considering getting there a day early and doing a round trip ride to Hawarden on Saturday. I didn’t notice any negative comments. There was the rumor about it being a dry town although dry or not, its not a negative. Glad TJ cleared that up for us definitively. I want to enjoy a beer on Saturday.

JW, I’ll need to track down one of those brats….


sjrs88, February 1, 2017 at 1:51 pm

I am Catholic, but attended one of the Reformed churches Sunday services when Orange City was a pass through town a few years back. Love starting my week off that way and the community was so friendly and inviting!


KenH, February 2, 2017 at 8:02 am

I’m an evangelical Protestant and I attended Mass at Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Church in Glenwood on Saturday evening last year. It was a great way to start the week off! As a bass player at my home church I appreciated their worship team, the sermon was fine by anyone’s standards, and I had no idea what I was supposed to be doing much of the time but I survived and no one made fun of me. The only downside really was that I rode to the church direct from the tire dip site on the Missouri and arrived feeling more than a little spent from the oppressive heat and humidity only to find that there is a hors categorie climb to reach the church!

I wanted to get an early start on Sunday so I was happy to find a Saturday evening service. I don’t know if any of the many, many Reformed churches in Orange City have Saturday evening services. Many Protestant denominations do not, Lutherans are often an exception but apparently not in Orange City. At some point I will write the RAGBRAI team at the Register and suggest that they encourage the local churches to have a special Saturday evening service or an early, perhaps abbreviated, Sunday morning service for us. It is really not an issue to “go heathen” for a week since I spend plenty of time at my church the rest of the year. It was a surprisingly nice cherry on top of the sundae of experiences that is RAGBRAI to have attended Mass last year however!


W Fanning, February 2, 2017 at 10:27 am

I plan on getting to OC Friday night.. So I can bike to Hawarden on Saturday morning.. It be great to ride with others.. Expo.. hopefully church in the afternoon on Saturday.. looking to soak it all in…


alan.2020.davis, February 5, 2017 at 3:58 pm

I noticed that Orange City is not a western border town.
For those interested in dipping a tire in the river on the western side of the state, is there a reasonable route to the river from Orange City?


KenH, February 5, 2017 at 6:08 pm

There is a thread devoted to the topic of wheeldipping opportunities this year, Wheeldippers XLV Edition.

Hmm, I wonder if some local farmers would be interested in hauling us to the river on hayracks for a fee? Or the RAGBRAI SAG van/trailer? It is not an outrageous distance to ride there and back of course but some of us will arrive in town late enough that being able to run to the river via motor vehicle and then pedal back to Orange City might make the journey more feasible, schedule-wise.


Amanda, February 5, 2017 at 6:32 pm

You could take Hiway 10 west out of Orange City. That will take you to Hawarden direct. The road is alittle iffy. Not sure what the traffic is like on a Saturday. Its 22 miles to Hawarden. You can dip in the Big Sioux there. OR go to Alton 3 miles east of Orange City. You could dip in the Floyd River -it empties into the Big Sioux which goes into to Missouri. So technically, its the same river water. :)


KenH, February 6, 2017 at 8:46 am

It’s really not a tire dip that drives some of us to seek the western border. It is the border itself. This is supposed to be a ride across Iowa and that means border to border. For some of us anyway. We dip our tires because there is a river there and the actual border is under several to many feet of potentially fast flowing water. If the border were dry we’d happily pose for pictures by the welcome to Nebraska/South Dakota/Wisconsin/Illinois signs on the borders. Starting the ride in a place like Orange City that is off the border is fine. Failing to provide an official way to get to the border is akin to stopping the ride in Waukon and not providing a Mississippi River dip site! Trucked in pools of water or dip sites in tributaries are as satisfying to the border to border crowd as Peter Jackson’s movies are to Tolkien fans.

I understand the desire of towns like Orange City to be the start town and I am sure that Orange City will do a fine job. Start town is a much bigger economic and social plum than end town is. But if the ride is going to start in places like Orange City then perhaps the routes on those years should include towns like Hawarden as pass through towns. I’m also of the opinion that the faithful and long suffering end towns on the Mississippi River should occasionally be used as overnight towns to reward them for participating as end towns with the bigger economic benefit that overnight town brings. Besides, it would be nice to spend the last day riding along the River!


T. Gap Woo, February 7, 2017 at 11:37 am

KenH: Besides, it would be nice to spend the last day riding along the River!

Why limit the fun to the last day? Now that we know that Lansing is the ending town for this year, I am planning a personal extension of my RAGBRAI vacation. I’m still working out the logistics, but I’m thinking of a border-to-border NORTH to SOUTH ride from the Minnesota/Iowa border in New Albin to the Iowa/Missouri border in Keokuk, following the Great River Road as closely as possible. Some day, I’d like to ride the whole river from Lake Itasca to the Gulf of Mexico, but that’s another story.

Now, if Mrs. Woo can wrangle the extra time off from work. . . . .

See you along the I-O-Way in July.


jwsknk, February 7, 2017 at 1:01 pm

T. Gap Woo, did the Gulf (60 miles south of New Orleans was really as close as we could get by road, but we were about at sea level, one town elevation was 2)to Ft. Francis Canada once. 5 weeks about 2300 miles. Some Mississippi River Trail, some Great River Road, and some Adventure Cycling route.


Bernard Schwartze, February 7, 2017 at 2:31 pm

T. Gap Woo, this sounds like it could be fun. http://www.ctre.iastate.edu/mrt/


John Weber, February 13, 2017 at 10:22 pm

KenH, we will be having an afternoon or evening church service for those who want to attend. Hope you make it!
To address the tire dipping question, Hawarden will be the closest town. I would NOT recommend traveling on Hwy 10 from Hawarden to Orange City. It’s busy with no shoulder. The best way would be be to go from Hawarden two miles south to B58, through Ireton and Maurice, over to K64 (Jackson Ave), then north to OC. Much less traffic hat way. This is the route our bike club takes every Tuesday during the summer.
Hope this helps.


Amanda, February 14, 2017 at 8:22 am

Thanks for the tip, John! I did not know that B58 was a straight shot from Maurice to Hawarden. I thought it turned into gravel just out of Ireton. Now I will have another route to use. I usually ride over to Remsen and Marcus for my rides. I do know K22 which is the 2 miles you ride south of Hawarden to get to B58. We lived on a farm on that road when I was in 1st grade. Guess I need to ride that way. :)


jwsknk, February 14, 2017 at 8:29 am

What do you think the main route into town Saturday will be? from the south 75 to K64? or stay on 75 to 10 and in from the west? dependent on where the main campground is. (college south side of town?)


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