The Ottumwa Courier

Southeast Iowa

July 26, 2013

Fairfield hosts Iowa's biggest party with RAGBRAI

FAIRFIELD — Jachin Otte stood in front of a vendor's stall, waiting on a friend who was looking over the merchandise.

Otte was easy to spot with a black-and-gold University of Missouri jersey. He didn't attend Mizzou. In fact, his home is closer to this year's RAGBRAI route than the university. But he still supports his home-state team.

It's relatively easy to see how someone from northeastern Missouri could wind up on RAGBRAI this year. But Otte was waiting on Bill Dillon, who hails from Virginia. That's a bit more of a trip.

“I did an internship up here,” Dillon explained.

This year is the first RAGBRAI for both Otte and Dillon. Both said they enjoyed it, even though the routes through southern Iowa are known for having hillier terrain than when RAGBRAI treks through the northern part of the state.

“It's a challenge, for sure,” said Dillon. “But the towns have been really nice to us. They've been really encouraging.”

Dubuque's Martin Fesler was getting supportive reactions, too, because of his “Metropolis” jersey. No, not Superman's Metropolis. Fritz Lang's 1927 film. He bought it “a number of years ago” after seeing a vendor who had biking shirts that featured old movies.

“I get two, three compliments per day on it,” Fesler said.

Making the compliments sweeter was the fact Fesler was in a competition with a friend to see who got more comments. His friend was wearing a Cubs jersey, and Fesler was winning.

The Fairfield square steadily added people as morning blended into the afternoon. Food vendors on one side sold everything from gyros and salmon poppers to the more traditional tenderloin sandwiches.

The repair shops were busy, too. The riders have put a lot of miles on their bikes in the past few days. Some sought out routine maintenance, while others needed more serious repairs. The acrid smell of spray-on lubricants spoke to a steady business.

Text Only
Southeast Iowa
  • Tulip Time schedule

    Tulip Time is just around the corner. Here's the complete schedule for events.

    April 23, 2014

  • Centerville drug take back set for April 26

    On April 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Appanoose County sheriff and the Drug Enforcement Administration will give the public its eighth opportunity in three years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired

    April 23, 2014

  • Iowa delays plan to move inmates out of old prison FORT MADISON, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Department of Corrections is delaying plans to close the 175-year-old Iowa State Penitentiary after discovering problems in the heating and cooling system in its $132 million replacement. The department said Tuesday

    April 23, 2014

  • 0423 OTT Byway color photo -L -T -M Bike the Byway coming to southeast Iowa

    OTTUMWA — The first Bike the Byway ride will feature communities along the Historic Hills Scenic Byway and make for a fun day of bike riding. Scheduled for June 21, the ride will begin in Ottumwa and take cyclists through Blakesburg, Unionville, Drak

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Iowa gets nearly $72M in yearly tobacco payment Eds: APNewsNow. DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa received $71 million last week from tobacco companies — its annual share of a 1998 landmark legal settlement in which tobacco companies pay states for smoking-related health care costs. The Iowa Attorney

    April 21, 2014

  • Volksweg.jpg New Section of Volksweg Trail Now Open

    The 1.25 mile newly constructed section of the paved Volksweg Trail between Fifield Recreation Area and the new Robert's Creek Trailhead has been opened.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Managing concerns about falls with program The fear of falling can be just as dangerous as falling itself. People who develop this fear often limit their activities, which can result in severe physical weakness, making the risk of falling even greater. Many older adults also experience increa

    April 21, 2014

  • North Mahaska Jazz North Mahaska Jazz Band are Class 1A state jazz champions

    The title is the fourth in the past six years for North Mahaska's jazz juggernaut.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • New boilers cost district $380,000 The summer boiler replacement projects will be getting underway after the Centerville School Board approved a $380,801 bid from Capital City Boiler and Machine Works out of Des Moines during their April 14 meeting. Six bids were received and the boar

    April 18, 2014

  • Troy Rider.jpg Judge grants motion on witness comments

    Judge John Lloyd has granted a motion, filed by Troy Neil Rider's defense, to limit extrajudicial comment by witnesses regarding the sexual abuse case against Rider. 

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National