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  • Art Cullen
  • Tue February 07 2023
  • Posted Feb 7, 2023

Congratulations to our friends at The Des Moines Register for 50 years of RAGBRAI, and for returning to the original route that includes Storm Lake for its 2023 run. It is serendipitous that the golden anniversary of the famed bicycle ride coincides with the 150th anniversary of The City Beautiful. We’re glad to welcome the world to our hometown on July 23 for an overnight stay, and to be reminded that indoor plumbing is a wonderful development in our time.

We were here in 1973, one of us in high school and not paying attention. The other, John Cullen, was on the scene shooting photos for the Storm Lake Register and Pilot Tribune. He caught up with Register columnists Donald Kaul and John Karras as they parked their bikes by the lake with a few hardy friends. They were just hoping to indulge themselves in biking across this lovely state for a week and get paid for it. The parties developed organically in coming years until it attracted tens of thousands of riders and gawkers to the annual soiree.

Eventually Kaul got fired and Karras got old. They’re gone now.


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