• Posted Jan 27

Please welcome Perry Chamber of Commerce/BRR Ride as BIKEIOWA's newest sponsor.

With the long history of BRR, Perry has welcomed the Iowa Cycling Community long before being passed through on the Raccoon River Valley Trail! It wasn't long ago that the town motto was "Make Yourself at Home!" but whether just for the day or an extended stay, Perry will wow you with just how much "Culture & Community Thrive Here!" As one of the bigger stops along the trails, Perry is a great community to explore on and off a bike!

Yes, Perry is known best for the "BRR RIDE" aka “The Original WINTER Ride”, a 24 mile road ride that goes from Perry to Rippey and back, the city of Perry in Dallas county with a population of 8,000 residents has so much more to offer!

Perry is in a prime spot for Iowa cycling - the 47th BRR Ride will take place in February, the High Trestle Trail will connect to the Raccoon River Trail IN Perry in 2024. There are many great restaurants and watering holes in town. Art and History? check! Places to stay? yep! - the Hotel Pattee is right downtown as is other hotels nearby plus camping in Dawson.

Let Perry be YOUR STAYCATION destination whether it be in the Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall!


In the wake of recent tragedies, the 2024 BRR will be a bit different in that it may not feel quite like the big party as it has been in the past, but it may be the most important BRR yet, as one of many 'firsts' when it comes to getting back on the trail of recovery for our community. We ask that riders "show up for Perry" joining us with an outpouring of love and support for the community, respectfully participating in a moment of silence before the Group Start. The Chamber ordered the usual 800 shirts back in December and it would be wonderful to run out and to need to reorder due to an influx of registrations, or to have a record number of "Support the Ride" donations! PERRYSTRONG stickers and bandanas will also be available for purchase as a fundraiser to support the school and the families impacted.

About the BRR Ride

BRR! It's the name and usual sentiment for the beloved winter bike ride that has become an annual tradition for thousands of bike riders since 1978! The Perry Chamber of Commerce hosts the Annual BRR - Bike Ride to Rippey - each year on the first Saturday in February as its biggest and 'coolest' annual fundraiser.

Known as “The Original WINTER Ride” and the second longest standing bike ride in Iowa, this quirky tradition rolls on regardless of the weather! Over the past 45+ years, BRR riders have experienced frigid temperatures and wind chills while plowing through a foot of snow, but have also enjoyed spring like temperatures of 60 degrees! (more details)

2024 BRR Ride

The 47th Annual BRR - Perry's Bike Ride to Rippey - is Saturday, February 3, 2024.

Registration is GREATLY appreciated, as it is the Perry Chamber of Commerce's coolest annual FUNdraiser!

Registration Details:

ALL pre-registration packets will be MAILED before the ride (updated prices include shipping).

  • $40 Pre-Registration open 1/1 - 1/26/24
  • $40 Week-of Registration (with day-of packet pick-up) open 1/27-2/2/24
  • $45 Day-of Registration at Hotel Pattee on 2/3/24 (8am-2pm)

$15 Support the Ride donation (no merchandise) appreciated any time!

Support the Pedal Perry Connector Trail between the Raccoon River Trail & High Trestle Trail with an optional Let's Connect! See donation section at checkout.

Day-of Registration on 2/3 still available at the historic Hotel Pattee in downtown Perry (1112 Willis Avenue)starting at 8a.m., with the group start at 10a.m. from the corner of Willis and 2nd Street.


History of the BRR Ride

In 1977, Twenty brave souls participated in the very first BRR, organized by Jim Walstrom and Dennis Hurley, just as a memorable way to get people out and about for a fun activity when there wasn't much else going on in the winter time. The annual ride slowly grew to 50 riders, many from outside of Perry, then jumped to 320 in 1985, surprisingly when the wind chill was -25 below, and then continued to rise in popularity with more than 1000 riders in 1987, attracting riders from all across the state and even beyond! Since then, attendance has varied from year to year depending on the weather, but there has always been a core group of faithful riders as well as first timers! Annual traditions have shifted over the years with different businesses in town, but there has always been a halfway warm-up stop, food in Rippey, and other activities along the way or after the ride!

BRR has never been canceled, but there have been a few times when riders were encouraged not to ride and those that still ventured out got frostbite (back before winter gear was available/common)!

The 2020 BRR was just before COVID shutdowns and the ride even rolled on in 2021, the first year that pre-registration packets were mailed (just in case!). It ended up being cold and snowy and it was the first time in BRR history (they think) that there were fewer riders counted on the route than the total number registered! There were even first time riders that year that came out JUST BECAUSE it was cold and snowy!

VIDEO - 2020 Start
VIDEO - 2021 Start

The 2022 BRR weekend followed a polar vortex so 19 degrees felt warm and balmy compared to the week before! (fingers crossed for February 3rd 2024!)

Current Era BRR Ride

The Perry Chamber of Commerce plans on about 600-800 registered riders each year, all receiving the annual long sleeve t-shirt, and typically counts 1200+ riders out on the route. Additionally, area organizations such as the Rippey Lions Club as well as many Perry businesses and organizations benefit from the many riders enjoying the fun day of food and entertainment!

About Perry Area Chamber of Commerce

The Perry Area Chamber of Commerce promotes and strengthens our members through active leadership, networking, promotional activities, educational programs and community involvement. We strive to provide quality member services, community support and economic development, We actively promote tourism and nurture an inviting atmosphere for area citizens and guests (more details).

In addition to BRR, other annual events hosted by the Perry Chamber of Commerce include Perry's Chocolate Walk, Friday Fest, 4th of July, 2nd Street Block Party, Spooktacular, Lighted Parade and the Downtown Perry Summer Farmers Market. Other notable annual community events in Perry include Art on the Prairie, Art Harvest Tour, Fiber Festival of Perry, KidsFest, ¡Viva Perry! Latino Festival, Perrydice Cruizers Car Show, and the BACooN Ride.

As the biggest annual fundraiser of the year for the Perry Chamber of Commerce, funds raised through BRR registration, donations, and merch sales, help ensures that the Perry Chamber has the staffing capacity to host a number of other annual events and activities for the Perry Community, as well as other community projects throughout the rest of the year. Additionally, BRR is a major fundraising event for organizations in Rippey, including the Rippey Lions Club, Rippey Baseball Commission, and Rippey First United Methodist Church. Businesses and Organizations in Perry and surrounding communities benefit from the influx of riders over the BRR weekend which would otherwise be a very slow time of year for lodging, restaurants and retail!

About Perry

Designated as one of Iowa's "Great Places," Perry boasts a combination of arts, history, culture, commerce, and recreation, unmatched to any other of its size! (more details)

Perry's walkable downtown is home to more than 30 buildings on the National Register of Historic Places, multiple arts and cultural festivals, as well as several murals and public art installations, including four illuminated sculptures along the Willis Avenue boulevard that pay tribute to Perry's historical ties to the railroad, agriculture, industry, and the arts. Discover the many treasures of the Downtown Perry Historical & Cultural District including a boutique hotel, unique shops, destination dining, photo ops, and access to miles of paved trails!

With the expected completion in Summer 2024 of the Connector Trail from the Raccoon River Valley Trail (longest paved loop trail in the nation) to the High Trestle Trail (most photographed trail in Iowa), Perry is looking forward to welcoming even more riders through town to explore the trails and area attractions.

Perry Amenities

Make Hotel Pattee your home away from home - one block from Caboose Park and the Raccoon River Valley Trailhead - with 40 uniquely themed overnight rooms, including BRR and RAGBRAI rooms! Sportsman Park in nearby Dawson also provides a great outdoorsy lodging option!

Forest Park Museum and Carnegie Library Museum are great attractions right off the trail to explore area history.

A variety of area restaurants - from BBQ and pizza to authentic Mexican and Salvadorian specialties - offer great pit-stops, several with outdoor seating spring to fall!

There are a number of convenience stores near the trail to for quick on-the-go stops.

A number of bike-friendly shops even offer shipping to riders!

Other bicycle-friendly amenities include a Welcome Depot, Pattee Park, Wiese Park, and McCreary Community Building offer public restrooms and as cooling stations to riders.


  • Perry is northwest of the Des Moines Metro, approximately 38 miles via bike trails or 40 highway miles
  • from Waukee, 19 miles via Raccoon River Valley Trail and 27 miles via Hwy 141
  • Perry is southwest of Ames, via Hwy 30, Hwy 169, and Hwy 141.
  • Perry is north of Adel and other communities connected by I-80.
  • Soon, Perry will connect via High Trestle Trail east to Woodward (11miles), Madrid (17 miles), and Ankeny (36 miles).

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