What to expect when RAGBRAI rolls in Tuesday

In less than one week Clear Lake will welcome 40,000 plus RAGBRAI participants to town.

Clear Lake RAGBRAI Committee General Chair Diane Thompson and her committee want Clear Lakers to be ready to  enjoy the day and show off our community.

She provided this summary of what you can expect in Clear Lake on Tuesday.

A good time!

RAGBRAI is a unique event where we have a chance to show off our community and to have a lot of fun. Those who get involved will be glad they participated. Our guests come with enthusiasm and energy and a desire to meet people and see Clear Lake while they are here. It’s a fantastic day for Clear Lake, our guests, our residents, and our volunteers. Everyone who wants to have a good time will have a good time.

Lots of Questions

All of our guests will have questions about directions, available local services, food, entertainment, schedules, shuttles, etc. If you know the answer, that’s great. If you don’t know the answer as it applies to July 25, please tell them to go to one of our Information Centers (at North and South Campgrounds and at the Chamber) to get the best answer. Our Information Committees will have the most updated information.

Cell phone service

Service might be hampered on July 25. The concentration of bodies and phones might cause some problems. Just like everything else, plan around an anticipated inconvenience.


Hundreds of support vehicles will be coming to Clear Lake the morning of July 25 and many will be at gas stations. It would be smart to not wait until Tuesday to fill your vehicle with gas before work.  Also, if you think you want to get gas at a local gas station for your boat, it would be advisable to do that before Tuesday.


Chances are that you will not be able to buy ice in Clear Lake on July 25. If you think you will need ice, buy it on Monday.


Many bikers bring support vehicles whose drivers buy groceries immediately upon getting to town. Certain items will be in short supply. Besides that, getting to the grocery stores will be difficult with all the extra traffic. Best advice -- Go grocery shopping on Monday.

City Pool

The Clear Lake Aquatic Center will be open from 1 p.m.- 6 p.m. on July 25. Cost for admission on July 25 will be $3.50 for everyone.  If crowds are large, the management will break the swim time into shorter segments and the pool will be emptied of people and then the next group can then enter. The pool may also be closed temporarily for a short time for cleaning purposes if necessary. Inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated.

Law Enforcement

The Clear Lake Police Department will patrol the city as usual on July 25, with the exception of the downtown area.  RAGBRAI is bringing extra law enforcement officers from surrounding areas to assist the Police Department. They will be concentrated in the downtown area. The RAGBRAI Committee is paying for those officers. State Highway Patrol will be traveling with RAGBRAI and will have officers in Clear Lake while RAGBRAI riders are in town.

General Traffic

•Car – It will be crazy. If you don’t need to drive, don’t drive. If you need to drive, leave early and plan your route according to the RAGBRAI maps which will be available to the public on July 19 or can be seen on www.clearlakeragbrai.com .

•Bikes (local) – A great way to travel in town, but please stay off the Official Bike Route to avoid accidents and please avoid the downtown area

•Motorcycles – see Car

•Rollerblades – see Bikes

•Golf Carts – Only official RAGBRAI golf carts will be allowed in the downtown area on July 25.

North/South Travel in CL

There will be only two ways to get from the South side of Main Avenue to the North side of Main Avenue.

•Drive between Exits 193 and 194 on I-35.

•Drive east of Ventura.  Highway S14 (north/south) will be closed in Ventura on Tuesday.

Official Bike Route Activity – Welcoming our Guests

Between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. everyone in Clear Lake is encouraged to be near the Official Bike Route at any location and yell a welcome to the bikers. You might want to bring a lawn chair and some water. (Check the maps for official route information)  Everyone is encouraged to wear the Clear Lake RAGBRAI T-shirt to show support for having our guests in town. Bring crazy hats, noise makers, balloons, crazy stuff – and have fun. Here’s some precautions to make it a safer day:

•One of our primary goals is making the route safe for the bikes and bikers – and we also want our pets and children to be safe. Please keep pets away from the route.

•Do not let small children go in the street.

•While the bikers look as if they are having a great time, it is best not to try to join them.


Suggested parking for those wanting to be downtown is anywhere you can find a place. Parking close to downtown will be limited.


•Most streets will be blocked off.

•No coolers or beverages can be brought into the downtown area.

•An Information Center will be located at the Chamber office from 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. July 25.

•Smoking will be discouraged in the downtown area on July 25.

City Park

Beverage Garden – The area will be open at 9:30 a.m. and serve until midnight.  No beverages can be brought into the Beverage Garden through the nine Beverage Garden entrances and no beverages may be taken out.  Food is available in the streets surrounding the park and may be brought into the Beverage Garden. No animals will be allowed in City Park except for guide dogs.

Shuttle Buses

Shuttle buses will loop from campground entrances on 12th Avenue and 6th Avenue and the circle drive at the high school to the Charlie Brown parking lot from 10 a.m. – 1 a.m.  The 6th Avenue route will have a stop at the pool from 1-6 p.m.  No alcohol allowed on buses.


Wear a Clear Lake RAGBRAI T-shirt to show our guests that you are glad they have come to Clear Lake! Buy them at Lake Lifestyles, Emerson’s, Y Knot, and the Chamber office until Friday, July 21. After July 21, T-shirts will only be available at the Chamber office. Shirts are available in sizes Youth S-L and Adult S-XXL for $20 each.


The word RAGBRAI is copyrighted and cannot be used without the permission of the Des Moines Register. If it is used on signs and other ways, RAGBRAI has the right to remove the signs, etc.


Signs will be everywhere. Signs do not need the RAGBRAI committee approval except in the downtown area, however, if the sign is inappropriate or uses the name RAGBRAI, it will probably be removed. Anyone planning on using signs needs to get permission of the owner of the property on which the sign is to be placed.  The owner of that property has the right to remove the sign if they want to. Signs along County roads need County approval. If signs are placed without approval, they will be removed. Residents are under no obligation to agree to have signs in their yard. It would be appropriate for anyone requesting a place for signs to give their name, phone number, and a design (including size) for the sign.

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