Approximately 10,000-12,000 RAGBRAI riders and their support teams camped overnight in Water Works Park July 23, 2013. One cyclist was overheard remarking that Water Works Park was “by far the coolest camp” he’d experienced in his 16 years of riding.
While riders and campers enjoyed the nature of the park and the close community it provided, the “hot” commodity was a chilled water station where bicyclists could fill their reusable water bottles with ice cold tap water. Recently designed by Des Moines Water Works staff, the water station connects to any water supply and utilizes ice to cool the tap water flowing through a 100’ coil to four bottle filling faucets. Chilled water was extremely popular as the riders are accustomed to drinking lukewarm tap water all day long.
Two additional water stations were strategically positioned in the campground to provide thousands of gallons of water for the campers’ needs. Riders were extremely appreciative of the plentiful supply of water allowing them to clean up and board a bus to experience the festivities in downtown Des Moines.
Cyclists and their support teams got an early start July 24 and by mid-morning, few traces remained of the epic camp-out the night before. From all accounts, cyclists enjoyed their stay in Des Moines and the hospitality offered by the entire community. In return, DMWW thanks RAGBRAI-ers for being great stewards of Water Works Park. Come back and enjoy!