I was here to teach for Quilt Iowa, the annual retreat for the statewide guild. http://www.iowaquiltersguild.com/
One of the great things about traveling to new places is the fascinating information gleaned from life in a new town. I just happened to be here on the weekend of the Ride Across Iowa http://www.ragbrai.org/, in which bicyclists from around the world travel a route that crosses the state in one week, averaging 50 or so miles per day. It began in 1973 as a challenge between Des Moines feature writer, John Karras, and avid bicyclist, Don Kaul. Karras challenged Kaul to ride his bike across Iowa to experience the state on a more personal level, and to write about what he saw from that perspective. Today, the race "Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI) is limited to 8,500 participants in order to maintain control and to reduce injuries. Makes me wish that I'd brought my bike too.