RAGBRAI

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The death of a central Iowa cyclist in a drunk driving accident last month has sparked a conversation among bikers and motorists about keeping cyclists safe on our state’s roadways.

Mark Wyatt, Executive Director of the Iowa Bicycle Coalition, says that while Iowa has three to five cycling deaths per year, if you compare that on a per capita basis, we’re not having fewer accidents than anywhere else.

Kent Newman

Raha Moharrak had been a world-renowned athlete for years, but still had one gap in knowledge. 

"I was a little bit arrogant," says Moharrak. "I said, 'Oh I climbed fourteen mountains including Everest, I can learn a bike.' I was wrong. I needed help."

But she learned to ride and this month joined RAGBRAI at the urging of Mara Gubuan, an Urbandale native who originally set out to ride RAGBRAI with her high school friends for their fiftieth birthday. Gubuan works with Shirzanan Global, an organization that empowers Muslim women through sport. 

Clay Masters / IPR

The Okoboji area is known for its tourism industry. The most recent data from the Dickinson County Chamber of Commerce says 255 million dollars are spent annually from tourism. But for last 40 years, cyclists on the Register’s Great Bike Ride Across Iowa have never stayed overnight in the Iowa Great Lakes. The natural barrier is a winding highway that goes from four to two lanes to wind around the lakes and an amusement park. But the RAGBRAI moved through the Iowa Great Lakes with no major problems.

Jaroslav A. Polák

For our weekly news buzz program, we get a review of the pending U.S. farm bill that is moving through Congress, how businesses are dealing with the Affordable Care Act, modern humans have a surprising amount of genes that come from Neanderthals, an important piece of art is returning to Iowa, a new  smartphone app designed in Iowa with which users can hear and see how to pronounce certain foreign language sounds, and we hear from a couple mayors of towns on this year’s RAGBRAI route. 

John Pemble

Taped on Tuesday 12/17/13 as part of the IPR Insight Series, this is a special edition of River to River with NPR’s Don Gonyea, recorded before a live audience in Des Moines. Host Ben Kieffer asks Gonyea about the 2013 political year, his career, and his connection to Iowa. IPR also tests Gonyea’s Iowa knowledge with a bit of trivia.

Top five moments and quotes from the night:

Ben Stanton / Iowa Public Radio

Studies estimate that at least one in every five veterans experiences post-traumatic stress disorder after returning home from Iraq and Afghanistan. Today, guest host Emily Woodbury talks with two Iowans working to change that statistic.

Steven Lancaster, an assistant professor of psychology at Drake University, discusses his new study on how a soldier's "military identity" affects their likelihood of experiencing anxiety or depression.

John Pemble / Iowa Public Radio

Every summer more than ten thousand people gather at a town on the Missouri River for the start of RAGBRAI, the Register's Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa. Visit day one of RAGBRAI with host Charity Nebbe and producer Ben Stanton as they ride their bikes from Council Bluffs to Harlan and meet a lot of people along the way.  Hear about bikes, parties, campgrounds, the pork chops and the pie, and other special traditions.   

John Pemble / IPR

 RAGBRAI, the annual bicycling ride across the state, made its way to Des Moines Tuesday. The trip wraps up this weekend in Fort Madison. Among the cyclists this year are NPR reporters Don Gonyea, Scott Horsley and Brian Naylor.

IPR's Clay Masters caught up with the trio. You can follow their travels the rest of this week at Return to Iowa.

Dave Herholz / flickr

RAGBRAI XL, the Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa, rolls out of Sioux Center on Sunday. On the latest "Talk of Iowa", host Charity Nebbe spoke with the director of RAGBRAI, TJ Juskiewicz. Juskiewicz shared what is new for this year's route, why the tradition has continued over the years, and how the weather might affect the ride.

RAGBRAI's 40th Year

Jul 18, 2012
Eva Ekeblad / flickr

RAGBRAI XL, the Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa, rolls out of Sioux Center on Sunday.  On today's program, we talk about why this event has endured for forty years, why people from all over the world flock here to bike across Iowa in July, and we reminisce about RAGBRAI's past with Chuck Offenburger.

This summer RAGBRAI will roll across Iowa for the 40th time and right now bicycle enthusiasts are converging on Des Moines for the Iowa Bicycle Summit. This year’s RAGBRAI route won’t be announced until Saturday (Jan. 28), but we will get a preview of RAGBRAI 40 from the event's Director, T.J. Juskiewicz. We'll also talk about biking in Iowa with Mark Wyatt, Ex. Director of the Iowa Bicycle Coalition and Nick Sobocinski, also with the Coalition and Program Director of "Safe Routes to School."