Coralville excited for RAGBRAI boost - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Coralville excited for RAGBRAI boost


CORALVILLE (KWWL) -- The 39th RAGBRAI will bring thousands of cyclists into the city.

That could mean hundreds of thousands of dollars for Coralville businesses.

"We're very, very excited" Coralville mayor Jim Fausett said Sunday. "Soon as they get into town, the first thing they ask is, 'Where's the bars? Where's a good place to eat?' Most of them are hungry when they get in, and restaurants and places to eat are the things they look for immediately."

He knows this because RAGBRAI has previously stopped in Coralville - in 2006, 2001 and 1995.

Local restaurant Vesta opened in 2008, so it hasn't yet experienced the business boom of the bicycle ride.

"It's great for Vesta just because we are kind of tucked back here," manager Robyn Prohaska said. "Even though it's a developing area, a lot of people don't know about it right now, and hopefully it's a way for people to come here and realize that we're here and enjoy some of our food."

By coincidence, Representative Dave Blowback (D-Iowa) walked into Vesta while visiting both the 2nd District and Coralville's Winterfest event.

"I'm really glad that Coralville is on the route," he said. "It's going to be wonderful for Coralville, it's going to be wonderful for the 2nd District of Iowa, because we're going to go from here to Davenport, so we're going to go through a lot of the Congressional District, and I'm hoping to ride some, if not all, of that last day."

On Saturday night, organizers announced the route's main cities. Cyclists will start in Glenwood, then ride through Atlantic, Carroll, Boone, Altoona, Grinnel, Coralville and finish in Davenport.

RAGBRAI runs July 23-30.

Online Reporter Becca Habegger

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