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  • Mo Haider
  • Wed July 02 2014
  • Posted Jul 2, 2014
From cleaning flood damage, to putting up welcome Ragbrai signs, Rock Valley has taken a 180 degree turn in a very short period of time. A city that was once worried about flooding is now full of smiles.

"Yeah, we have a busy summer here but we're getting ready, our people our fired up and they're great,” said Kevin Van Otterloo, Mayor of Rock Valley. Before Ragbrai riders start pedaling through the area, the city wanted to make sure folks in Rock Valley were okay with it. After careful consideration, officials decided hosting the event is exactly what they need.

"We want to show off our community. We want to show off how strong we are, how resilient. Also, a little bit of pride, that we can go through this and help each other and get all these volunteers together,” said David Miller, members of Ragbrai committee. An estimated 10 to 15 thousand riders are expected to roll through. Despite their troubles, folks are still giving what they can.

"Some people don't give up their homes, but they give up their back yards and they can camp here. That's the big thing. We've had people all in say, I wasn't going to do this before, but i will now,” said Van Oterloo.

Even though the city is excited, folks know they can't forget about each other. "There was a lot of doubt about whether Ragbrai was going to be able to come to Rock Valley. We were in the midst of devastation, so we had to take care of those things first, “ said Don Ortman, Ragbrai committee member.

All the city's proceeds from Ragbrai will go to the flood victims. If you'd like to donate, please visit the city's website or Facebook page for fore information.

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