Important Information for RAGBRAI 2023
Please be sure to read this information before check-in.
Arrival in Sioux City and Check-In
Camp in the start town will be set up by early afternoon on Saturday, July 22. Feel free to come get checked in any time after 3:00 pm. Our shuttle and bicycle truck will also arrive in camp on Saturday afternoon, some time around 5:00 pm. We’ll be camping at Riverside Park, on Council Oak Drive. If you are not arriving in the Padre’s shuttle from St. Louis, you will be able to check in when you arrive in camp to get your tent assignment and packet. Shuttle riders will receive tent assignments while on the bus. You'll need to complete our online waiver before checking in with Padre's. Here's a picture of our trailer and flags, which will be on site:
Wristbands and Baggage
Inside your tent, you will find a packet with a wristband and two baggage tags for Padre’s Cycle Inn, each with your tent number. If you are sharing a tent, you will find two packets inside the tent - one for each guest. Please verify that each guest has two baggage tags and one wristband, and that the number written on these matches the tent number you were assigned. These items are in addition to your RAGBRAI rider band. The wristbands in your tent packet signify that you are a Padre's guest. Only Padre's guests are permitted in the Padre’s Zone or to use any of our amenities. Please attach your baggage tags to your two bags immediately, using the zip ties included in your packet. Please also wear your Padre’s wristband all week. Here's a picture of a sample packet and its contents:
Each guest is allowed two bags, each weighing 40 lbs or less. As you begin to pack, you'll realize that you’ll have ample space for what you need. Remember, you don't need to pack a tent, mattress, pump, chair, or even towels. These are all provided for you. So, what you really end up needing to bring will be less than you may think. If you are undecided between one and two bags, opt for two and split the weight up. Consider leaving some space in your bags to come back with souvenirs you may acquire throughout the week. As with any camping event, we could have bad weather at times. We’ll do our best to store luggage in a dry location, but at times it’s impossible to keep everything clean and dry. We recommend you keep this in mind when bringing luggage and when packing your bags. If your bag isn’t weatherproof you may want to pack your items in zip lock or other bags inside your luggage. You may also want to avoid bringing luggage that you don’t want to get dirty.
You should pack your bags as if you were boarding a plane. Since all baggage goes into a truck or trailer, Padre's cannot transport items not in a bag or case designed for transport. Additional fees will be assessed for overweight baggage or loose items, so be sure to weigh your items before you arrive. If you absolutely need to be over the limit, contact us in advance to make special arrangements. All checked bags must have a Padre's Baggage Tag affixed with the provided zip tie. Please note that overweight bags, extra bags, untagged bags, and/or loose items are subject to a $30 baggage fee per item. Bags will be weighed, and each overweight item will be tagged as such and be subject to the $30 fee.
You will have a high-quality Kelty tent with a twin size air mattress (per guest), fully set up for you daily. You’ll use the same tent and mattress each day, and your tent number will be on your Padre’s wristband. You should have no issues with your tent, but if you do, please find a Padre's crew member. Crew members will be easy to spot in their bright yellow Padre's shirts or vests. Any crew member should be able to help you resolve any issues. Please do not wear cycling cleats inside your tent. The cleats will damage the bottom, which will result in you waking up with water on your tent floor if it rains. It's best to remove any shoes before entering. It will prevent dragging in grass and debris into your home-for-the-week. A pair of flip-flops works in camp, as you can easily slip them off and on.. Please do not eat, drink, or smoke inside the tent. Open food inside the tent will attract ants, and you’ll have them in your tent all week. We’ve seen issues with food attracting ants on past events, so please be careful. Here's a picture of our tent village:
If your air mattress needs more air when you first enter your tent, you can write your tent number on the "Mattress Top-Offs" board on the front of Padre's baggage trailer. Here's a photo of the mattress top-off board:
If you have an issue with your air mattress in the middle of the night, there will also be handheld inflators set out all night in the Zone, in case you want to top yours off. Here's a photo of an inflator being used:
There will also be inflated spares in the back of the baggage truck. It’s a good idea to check your air mattress when you arrive in camp and set a piece of luggage on top, which will help identify if there are any leaks or issues. If there is an issue, we can get it resolved before you are ready to retire for the night. You’ll need to bring your own bedding. We recommend a set of twin mattress sheets, blanket or sleeping bag, and a pillow. For reference, the mattress dimensions are about 75”x39”x10”. Here's a photo of the mattress inflator being used to top off a mattress:
After a long day’s ride, you’ll enjoy the Padre’s Zone. Under our canopies or occasionally, some shade trees, you’ll find a chair to sit in, complimentary snacks and refreshments, cooling fans, and more. Our goal is to have this area setup each day by 1:00 pm and to have your tents and luggage ready to go by 4:00 pm. Each morning, in the same area, you will find freshly brewed coffee, starting at 6:00 am. There will also be water, ice, and sports drink powder. One cooler will be solely for clean ice. When getting ice from the clean ice cooler, please use the ice scoop, and sanitize your hands before doing so to avoid the spread of germs. Do not grab ice while wearing cycling gloves. Mounted to the side door of the Padre's Zone trailer will be cups, utensils, & coffee supplies, as well as hand sanitizer and a first aid kit. Typically, we close up the trailer and secure the charging station around 10 pm. If you are in this area after 10, please be respectful of other guests who may be trying to sleep. Here a photo of the supply door:
In the Zone, you’ll also find our electronics charging station. There will be more outlets than guests, so everyone should have an outlet to use at any given time. But please remove your electronics once they are fully charged. Your phone will charge faster if powered off while charging anyway. The charging station is not monitored, so please do not leave your items unattended. Padre’s is not responsible for lost or damaged items left on the charging station. If you are riding an e-bike, you can charge your removable batteries at the charging station. If your e-bike battery doesn’t come off, please bring a 50’ extension cord so that you can charge your bike outside the Zone. The charging station will run from approximately 6:30-8:00 am, and from around noon until 10:00 pm, when it will be put in the cargo trailer and locked until morning.
Early Items Bins
If you think you'll arrive in camp before the 4:00 baggage time, you might consider using our Early Items bins. Each morning we'll set out plastic totes that you can put your shower items in for immediate access. Please use a sling bag or similar - nothing larger - to place a clean set of clothes and any toiletries needed at the showers. These bins will be the first items unloaded when we set up the Zone. Here's a photo of an Early Items Bin:
Reducing and Recycling
Help us keep our carbon footprint as low as possible. Please consider using your water bottle when getting water, lemonade, or sports drink, rather than using a disposable cup. Feel free to also bring an insulated cup for your favorite in-camp beverages. Please also place only plastic bottles and aluminum cans in the green trash bags; put all other trash in the clear trash bags.
Bikes, Racks, and Maintenance
We will have bike racks for Padre’s guests to hang your bike each day. This is the best place to put your bike while in camp. Please do not bring your bike inside your tent or lean it against your tent. This can damage the tent and get grease inside, which will ultimately end up on you and your things. If you have mechanical issues with your bike, there will be a maintenance stand available for you to use, along with a limited set of tools to borrow. Please do not move the tools from the maintenance area. Your used shower towel will work well for wiping things off at this time, and you’ll have plenty of dust and grit from the ride each day. We will also have several bike pumps available. You may find that some of the bike pumps we have in camp don't function like yours. If that occurs, feel free to ask for help or choose a different pump that suits you. Please keep the bike pumps in the maintenance area as well, so that we can keep track of them.
Showers and Towels
Each evening, you'll be provided with two new shower towels. The towels are eco-friendly, recycled, and disposable. But have no fear; we have used these towels many years with virtually no complaints. The towels are strong and absorbent, but to ensure that they do the trick, feel free to take two daily. Save a used towel after your shower. They are ideal for wiping your bike or other gear down in the morning or should you need to work on your bike at any time. Don’t forget to grab your clean towels on your way to the showers each evening!
Our crew will begin breaking camp at 6:00 am each day. Please plan to be out of your tent with your gear no later than 8:00 am. In order for our crew to break camp, transport everything to the next town, and have the next camp ready for you, we must begin taking tents down as early as possible. Please place your gear outside your tent as early as you can so that the crew knows your tent is ready to be taken down and that your bags are ready to be loaded. When you are finished inside your tent, please open the valve on your air mattress. This will allow the mattress to self-deflate by the time the crew breaks down your tent. Do not fold or roll the mattress up. Just let it lay flat in its place.
We’ll send out a few text alerts throughout the week of the event as reminders or important updates as needed. Please sign up for our text alerts by texting @pciragbrai to 81010.
End Town Procedures for July 29
The luggage, bike truck, and optional shuttle location is listed below. But you can just follow the Padre’s arrows like any other day to get to the baggage truck and St. Louis shuttle. The Padre’s shuttle to St. Louis departs promptly at 3:30 pm. If you are riding the shuttle, this means you'll need to be in Davenport with enough time to remove your pedals, load your bike, get a shower, and hopefully have a bite to eat - all before 3:30 pm. Even if you are not riding the shuttle, you’ll still want to be back by 3:30. After that, any remaining bags will be left unattended, as the luggage truck needs to return with the shuttle. Needless to say, you'll want to spend less time in the towns on the last day, and/or leave earlier than normal that morning.
We will have two meetings. The first meeting will be on Saturday at 5:30 pm in the Padre’s Zone, at the trailer. There will be an additional meeting on Friday at 6:00 pm to discuss the last day procedures. Please try to attend these meetings.
Gratuity & Crew
The Padre’s crew will typically be wearing bright yellow Padre’s Cycle Inn shirts or vests when they are working. We estimate they’ll be hauling as much as 10,000 lbs of luggage twice each day as well as setting up and tearing down camp. If you need anything, feel free to ask any of them for assistance! Since our crew begins working before 6:00 am, we give them most evenings off, but we will always have someone around the Zone that is there to help you until 10:00 pm each evening. There will be a tip jar out in the Zone at the end of the week to recognize the staff for their hard work. The tips are for the crew (all workers, not Dave or Jimmy). If you’re wondering what an appropriate tip amount would be, our crew typically averages about 15% in tips. If you need to leave before the last day and want to leave a tip for the crew, please see Suzie, Jimmy, or Dave.
Please click here for a list of suggested items.
Optional Round-Trip Shuttle
If you are riding the round-trip shuttle with Padre’s Cycle Inn, please read the information below regarding procedures.
Hollywood Casino & Hotel St. Louis
777 Casino Center Dr,
Maryland Heights, MO 63043
Check-In and Bike Loading
Bike check-in will be Friday, July 21, between 4:00 pm and 7:00 pm. There will be no bike loading on Saturday. You must check in and load your bike on Friday because of the lengthy amount of time needed to carefully load each bike. When you arrive with your bike, you’ll find us in the northeast corner of the parking lot. Look for the 26’ moving truck. Here's a map showing directions to the parking lot where we'll load the bikes. The map is linked to a gps pin as well, so you can click on the image from your phone and navigate right to us!
When you check in, we’ll give you a parking pass for your vehicle, and the staff will load your bike and wrap it for transport with a moving blanket. Pedals MUST be removed before your bike can be loaded. Please remove your pedals BEFORE you arrive to check in your bike because some pedals are on so tight that a bike shop has to remove them, and we will not have a mechanic or tools there to assist you. Be sure to bring tools for this and pack them in your luggage so that you can replace them when we arrive in the start town and remove them again at the end town. Please feel free to bring more padding or protection if you do not think that one moving blanket will be safe enough. If your bike is already in a case, you may leave it in the case and place the case on the truck. We will transport the case with us all the way to the ending point where you can place your bike back into it for transport back on our truck. To avoid damage to your bike and belongings, please be sure to remove sensitive or fragile items beforehand, including pedals, bike bags, cycle computers, mirrors and anything else which takes up more room than the normal bike frame or that may be easily damaged. Padre’s is not responsible for items left on a bike. Pack these items with your baggage; do not leave them hanging on your bike. Rear racks do not need to be removed, nor do your handle bars need to be turned. Again, please be sure to bring tools to replace the items you have removed when we arrive in the start town, as we have very limited tools and may not have what you need.
Free Long-Term Parking
All shuttle riders have access to free long-term parking in the parking garage. Be sure to place the Padre’s Cycle Inn parking tag on the dash of your vehicle when you park it there for the week. And as always, secure your vehicle and be sure not to leave valuables in plain sight.
Shuttle Departure from St. Louis
Please note that the shuttle departs the casino promptly at 6:00 am on Saturday, July 22. The motor coach will be in the same location that the bike truck was when you loaded your bike. It is imperative that we leave on time, in order to ensure that everyone has time to get unloaded and set up in Sioux City, and has an opportunity to check out the expo and entertainment Saturday evening. Do not be late on Saturday morning. We cannot make exceptions for departure times. If you are late, you will be left behind. Please realize that it takes a while to load the luggage into the cargo hold of the motor coach. Thus, if you arrive right at 6:00 am, we cannot depart promptly at 6:00 am. Be sure to give yourself enough time to park, walk to the shuttle, and load your luggage. We suggest arriving at the casino as early as 5:00 am but no later than 5:30 am. The shuttle does have a bathroom, but we will make several rest stops along the way. Anticipated stops will be in Columbia, then again in St. Joseph for lunch at Bandana’s. Your lunch (meal, non-alcoholic beverage, and gratuity) is included in your shuttle fee. We have requested a shuttle with wi-fi and 110v outlets, but there’s no guarantee, so please plan accordingly for the ride. Be sure to bring your luggage with you on Saturday morning to be loaded into the luggage compartment of the motor coach. Don’t forget to pack any tools you’ll need to reinstall your pedals and any other devices you choose to remove during transport.
If you are coming from out of town Friday night, consider booking a room at Hollywood Casino Hotel. To reserve a room there, click here to book online using the room block and lock rate (while they last). If you’d rather call to book, please call 855-785-4263 and use the code: PADG23A. If interested in booking there, be sure to book your hotel asap. If that does book up, there are several other hotels nearby, in the Earth City and Maryland Heights area. Therefore, you may also want to consider an overnight stay on Saturday, July 29, as we do not recommend trying to catch a flight out of town the day we return. Because of traffic and other unforeseen circumstances, we cannot guarantee a specific return time. Additionally, we don’t recommend driving a great distance upon return to St. Louis. You will have just completed over 400 miles on your bike in a week’s time. We recommend you get some rest before making a long drive back out of town.
Each day, you'll find maps in the Zone, posted on the side of the trailer. Sometimes, we’re right along the route, but many times, we’ll be at another location in town. Simply follow the Padre’s arrows, and you should arrive in camp without issue. If you do become off-course, the town information booth should typically know where we are and how to direct you there. For example, if you just tell them, “Padre’s Cycle Inn” or “Carroll Middle School” they should know how to get you there. Below are pictures of what our arrows look like. We’ll also try to highlight our arrows by affixing them to signposts with green duct tape, just in case other groups are using similar arrows. If you start seeing other groups’ arrows but don’t see ours yet, don’t panic. Some groups need to put their arrows out sooner, depending on where they are located, so you may start seeing other arrows well before you begin seeing ours. Just continue on the RAGBRAI route, following the orange RAGBRAI rider signs until you see the Padre's arrows as shown below:
Additionally, we'll be creating map routes using Ride With GPS. These routes are primarily to help you get from camp onto the route, and from the route back into camp. The Ride With GPS routes won't be available until mid-July, to try to avoid any last-minute changes made by ride the event organizers. Click here to join our Ride With GPS club and get free access to the TBD routes. We recommend you download these routes in advance for use offline, as quite often mobile data service is limited on RAGBRAI. To do this, open each route on your phone, click SAVE, then click DOWNLOAD FOR OFFLINE.
When you're out on the main route, just follow the orange signs and/or the crowd. Here's what the official RAGBRAI rider signs will look like:
Click on each location for a GPS Pin:
Saturday, July 22 - Sioux City
Riverside Park on Council Oak Drive, by Porkbelly Shower Trailers
Sunday, July 23 - Storm Lake
Storm Lake Middle School
Monday, July 24 - Carroll
Carroll Middle School
Jack Trice Stadium, at the corner of South 4th St & University Blvd
Wednesday, July 26 - Des Moines
Waterworks Park, Coordinates Coming Soon!
Thursday, July 27 - Tama-Toledo
City Park/Oak Park, at McClellan St. & West 17th St.
Friday, July 28 - Coralville
S.T. Morisson Park, by the tennis courts
Saturday, July 29 - Davenport
Rogalski Center at St. Ambrose University, next to Porkbelly Ventures
See you in July!