Again in its 32nd year the villages of Van Buren County, in Iowa will be hosting their annual pedal Van Buren ride August 18-19, and there is still room. Join over 200 bicyclists as they tour the countryside visiting several Civil War historical villages along the way. Ride participants can select the 42 or 66 mile route on Saturday and a 42 mile’r on Sunday. Along with SAG support and refreshments, a fun poker-run will be a part of the ride both days.
If you want to experience pedal Van Buren
The host villages will welcome the bikers with free refreshments and outstanding hospitality! All of the routes will lead you through some of the most beautiful countryside in Iowa! Register for Bike Van Buren online at www.villagesofvanburen.com or walk-up registration will be held at the Keosauqua City Park, Saturday 7 to 8:30 a.m. and Sunday only rider registration is 7:30 to 8 a.m. Two day registration fees: Adults: $45, Children under 18 years old: $37. Single day registration: Adults: $35, Children $27.
Bike Van Buren route options
Two routes will be offered on Saturday (66 miles & 42 miles) and 1 route on Sunday (42 miles). Riders can create their own route as well. All routes will begin and end at the Keosauqua City Park and all are clearly marked with large colored arrows. Bickel’s Cycling & Fitness, of Burlington, will provide technical support and several SAG (Service and Gear) wagons will be in-route with the riders at all times. Phone numbers for staff support crews are provided on the maps riders will receive upon registration (Riders are encouraged to carry a cell phone). All support crews will be equipped with free cold bottled water, courtesy of Dutchman’s Store, in Cantril and limited first aid.
Lunch options on the ride
Riders will have the option to purchase a lunch band at registration ($8 adults, $5 youth). Saturday’s lunch will be hosted by the Lunch Box Café, in Douds and on Sunday the Bridge Café, in Farmington will provide a lunch buffet. Registered riders will take advantage of 100% complimentary refreshments at each of the nine hospitality stops. Hospitality stops average 8-10 miles apart and will include some fascinating historic sites such as the Bonaparte Pottery, Stockport Depot and Pearson House Museum Complex.
A little gaming fun is included on the ride
A Fun Poker Run will be part of the event on both days. Riders will try to build their best hand of poker by drawing cards at designated hospitality stops. The best hand on each day, will win $100 cash. Bickel’s Cycling & Fitness in Burlington will provide prizes for 2nd, 3rd and 4th place winners.
Tour the Underground Railroad after the 1st days ride
Saturday’s ride will conclude at the Pearson House Museum Complex. Here ride participants can tour the Underground Railroad safe house. The tour shows places where escaping slaves hid under the floorboards, during the Civil War, on their journey to freedom. The Pearson House will also be open on Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. On Saturday evening, in the Keosauqua City Park from 4 to 7 p.m. Goehring Brothers BBQ will be serving mouth-watering pulled pork & brisket plate dinners. From 5 to 6 p.m. the Tarnished Brass Band will perform and everyone is invited to bring a lawn chair and enjoy the evening!
A Van Buren breakfast tradition
The Keosauqua Lions will be serving an all-you-can-eat pancake & sausage breakfast ($7) with scrambled eggs and fresh fruits (courtesy of the Dutchman’s Store in Cantril). Held in the Keosauqua City Park and open to the public, both mornings, serving time is from 6:30 to 10 a.m. A raffle Saturday morning, for a beautiful TREK Domane AL 3 Road Bike, will be held at the pancake breakfast. The Keosauqua Lions, First Iowa State Bank and Bickel’s Cycling & Fitness have partnered together to raffle the bike. Tickets ($5 each or 5/$20) will be for sale during the Lions breakfast on August 18 and again that afternoon at the Keosauqua City Park. A winner will be drawn Saturday evening, at 6 p.m. You need not be present to win the bike. Proceeds will benefit various Lions Club projects.
For more information contact: Villages of Van Buren 800-868-7822 / 319-293-7111 www.villagesofvanburen.com