The Des Moines Reception
(from Chicago, IL )
June 21,2002
Brought to you by:
L-R:Jerome Hediger, manager of Wicks Aircraft, Don Tripp, Park and Recreation Director, Mayor Pro Tem, Christine Hensley, Gay Lea Wilson, Trails Committee, Jim Redd,webmaster for the Chicago Critical Mass with the Des Moines Proclamation and unidenbtified cyclist
I couldn't have had a better ride into D-M proper, especially that long downhill on Hubbel between Sheridan and Guthrie!

A few more words about Iowa. The beauty of biking across Iowa is being able to be part of the landscape. And it is a truly gorgeous one, much more diverse and intriguing than you are likely to experience on the interstate. To me, the value of Iowa does not lie along that cluttered I80 commercial corridor, but back along the farm roads and small towns. They say small towns are dying in America, but not in Iowa. Those were the places I enjoyed myself most, in those little towns with the inviting store fronts with benches out front, with people walking on the sidewalks. That is where I talked to people curious about my ride, and did most of my writing for the pocketmail lady.

Hopefully, my trip may inspire others to get out from behind that windshield, as far as you can from the sterility of that interstate, and experience the amazing richness of the true Iowa.

It was the big media event of the day at Des Moines city hall. Three TV stations, a radio station, and at least one print journalist! Wow it was my moment of fame. I got a great reception from the deputy mayor who read the proclamation, then gave it to me. I said a few words to the assembled crowd, then gave the proclamation to Jerome to take to Boulder. I rode part way out of town with him, then went back to a public plaza and had two Chicago style hot dogs to top the whole thing off! What a day!
Jim Redd

Read Jim's fun trip reports!!

Jim Redd holds court witgh the Des Moines presss

Jerome Poses with proclamtion and Deputy Mayor
Exit Des Moines
I have completed the first days ride in the wind and heat. Our meeting at the City Hall was a lot of fun. The media from radio and and TV was there. I hope we make the news. My short meeting with Jim was great, what a fantastic guy.

A few local cyclists escorted me to the Great Western bike path that took me out of town. The path was so nice I wished I could ride it all the way to Boulder. The ride today was pretty tough with hills,heat and wind. I will get out on the road early tomorrow to beat some of the heat. I could not help but think about our President and owner of Wicks Aircraft .

He had a tragic accident this last weekend and was buried Wednesday. He was my boss, but he felt like my father since my own father died last October. And of coause, Andrew's accident also weighs heavy on my mind. It excites me that the ride might help get out the word.

It is time for a shower and some food and bed time.

Signing off.
Jerome Hediger can be reached on the road at
Hello All,

I am from the Des Moines area and had the pleasure of watching Jim on the local news Friday evening. Jim did a great job representing all cyclists and getting the NBG message out to central Iowa. Good job Jim!

It is not surprising that there was such a positive media response here to his trip. The central Iowa media has a long tradition of being very pro-cycling. Iowa is after all, the home of RAGBRAI which is celebrating it's 30th anniversary this year. RAGBRAI was begun 30 years ago by Iowa's largest paper (The Des Moines Register) and is now the largest and longest running ride of it's kind anywhere.
I enjoyed Jim's journal entries on his trip through Iowa into Des Moines and of his time spent here. I think he very accurately portrayed the cycling experience in Iowa. As hundreds of thousands of the RAGBRAI riders through the years from all over the world can attest, Jims observations of cycling on the back roads, through small towns and his interactions with hospitable Iowans was right on. I wish I had known Jim was at the Farmer's Market on\ Saturday. As is often the case, I was down there on my bike too and would have enjoyed meeting him.

Anyway, congratulations to Jim, blessings to Andrew and good luck to Jerome.

Gary Mishler, 6/24/02 om rec.bicycles.misc

“I read in detail each time one of your reports comes in. What fun they are to read. You are giving me a chance to ride with you and that is wonderful. Have a good safe ride and keep up the marvelous reports for as long as you are on the road.
-- -- Velda, Roseville CA

“Just a quick note to let you know how great it has been to read your emails! You do a great job describing the scenes and your ruminations.”
-- Gin Kilgore, Chicago

“Just a note to say thanks for picking up the torch for Andrew, and thanks for sending your daily reports, which I read each day with great interest. Best wishes for a safe journey.”
-- Stephen Bach ,Charlottesville VA

“I've enjoyed reading your diary of your ride. Reminds me of doing the AidsRide from Mpls to Chicago, but doing it all alone is another whole category of effort-especially carrying all the camping gear with you! Inspiring indeed. Good luck! “
-Mary Henrickson, Quality Bicycle Products

“I just finished reading your "best-of" list from Martin Krieg. Very entertaining. Congratulations on the completion of your trek! “
-- Dave David Roos
Owner, Laid Back Biking
Englewood, CO

“Jim, I'm really going to miss your charming narratives from the road! You have a real gift. I hope you do more of the same and share with us again in the future? Safe journeys. “
-- Rita Walter, Chicago

“What a guy. I am not sure if I liked the fact that you did the ride more or the writing you did about it. No wonder you wrote a book. Keep up the good work….
… I think you have a real flair for writing and would like to get your earlier book. Please give me the name and how I could get it. You should do another book with your humor and style. “
-- Jim Muellner, NBG Indianapolis to Chicago 2002 Relay Cyclist
Owner, Just 2 Bikes

“as someone who's spent some time on the road i got a real kick out of your emails. i havent heard the pocketmail lady's voice in almost a year but i remember that (misdirected?) feeling of having a friend at the other end of the line. “
--- Andrew Morton, Portland
NBG Portland to Santa Cruz 2002 Relay Cyclist

“Jim, I knew you were cool in about 300 ways, but I had no idea you were such a kick-ass writer. I've been hanging on every word. “
-- Howard Kaplan, Chicago

“I am enjoying the updates, keep sending them. “
-- Bill Ressiguie, Chicago

“I've enjoyed very much your postings …. I really enjoyed following your trip. I do a lot of cycle-touring myself, alone, unsupported. “
-- Bob Kastigar, Chicago

“I've been enjoying your messages from the road. Keep 'em coming for the ride to Osceola and your Amtrak ride. “
-- Anne Alt, Chicago

“I have enjoyed reading about your adventures thru the corn belt. “
-- David

“I enjoyed Jim’s journal entries on his trip through Iowa into Des Moines and of his time spent here. I think he very accurately portrayed the cycling experience in Iowa. As hundreds of thousands of the RAGBRAI riders through the years from all over the world can attest, Jim’s observations of cycling on the back roads, through small towns and his interactions with hospitable Iowans was right on. “
-- Posted to newsgroups by Gary Mishler, Des Moines

“Very entertaining trip report!
-- Jill Shayhurst

“Thanks for sharing your travel journal. I shared your postings with Iowa friends and relatives, and everyone loves them. I had no idea you were such a great story-teller, though I'm not in the least surprised. “
-- Val Carpenter, Chicago

“I think the long-distance cycling brings out the rider's ability to write in a way they never have before....... I love reading these accounts as I can travel out of here to where ever the rider is at as a vicarious journey. I so enjoy the descriptive prose sprinkled with the individual's personality. Reminds me how connected we all are even though we do not know each other. Little does Jim know I am sitting in Lockheed reading of his exploits on the road, getting to know him even though he does not know me! “
-- Candyss Fitzgerald, California

“Thank you so much for your wonderful postings about your journey to Des Moines. I loved reading each and every journal entry. “
-- Jane Healy, Chicago

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