With word spreading about the completion of the new “north loop” of the Raccoon River Valley Trail, bicyclists have already started visiting from all over. We met this group from Greeley, Colorado, on Thursday when they were taking a break on the RRVT in the town of Minburn. They were spending four days riding the RRVT and the neighboring High Trestle Trail, while staying a couple of the nights at the Hotel Pattee in Perry and another night at the Old Lincolnway Hotel at the trailhead in Jefferson. They were eating at restaurants in trail towns, too. The group of friends, now mostly retired, said that in the past eight to 10 years, they’ve taken several trips together to ride trails in many locations around the U.S., and they gave high marks to the RRVT. Left to right are Larry Jenkins, Karen Giebler, Jerry Akers, Jo Akers, Ralph Jenkins, Cathy Lasell, Gale Giebler and Bonny McNerney. The Akers couple live in Ankeny, and joined the Colorado group on the trail ride because Jerry Akers is the brother of Ruth Jenkins. Meanwhile, Karen Giebler had a message for us: “You should write a nice story about the co-op elevator right over there,” she said, pointing to the Heartland Co-Op Elevator office in Minburn. “They were really nice to us, letting us come right in and use the bathroom.”
So, how long has it been since you decorated up your bicycle and rode it in a parade? You can do that this weekend in the Raccoon River Valley Trail town of Jefferson, which is hosting the second annual Iowa Bicycle Festival. There’s a full slate of bicycle-themed activities, including art, history, fashion, music, food, competitions and more.
Raccoon River Valley Trail in Jefferson hosts a good turnout of “volkswalkers” on Saturday from the Greater Des Moines Volkssport Association. It was a beautiful day for a walk on two routes — one on the trail and the other around the community — and you can see more about it in our brief story and seven photos.
This Saturday’s 15th annual “Hiawatha Classic” bike ride is a highlight of an ambitious “bicycle month” line-up during May in Perry. Most of the Saturday ride will be on the new north loop of the Raccoon River Valley Trail. And check this story to learn about all the other cycling activities going on in the town during this month.
The Raccoon River Valley Trail showed really well for nearly 1,500 runners on the Market to Market Relay/Iowa event on Saturday, May 11. There is lots of photo coverage to come, but you can lead off by watching KCCI-TV News’ story on the event in their Saturday evening broadcast. We’ve got it right here for you.
A big step forward for the Raccoon River Valley Trail: Acclaimed sculptor David Dahlquist and his associates have been engaged to begin work on developing “an iconic public art installation” to go at the RRVT trailhead in Waukee. And hopefully their work will eventually become the “template” for other major public art pieces in other communities along the trail. Public input is now being taken on what these art pieces should be.
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