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The last time RAGBRAI passed through the town of Brandon was in 1985 as the annual, week-long bicycle ride moved from its overnight stop in Waterloo to the next overnight in Monticello.

And for a few short weeks earlier this year, Brandon again found itself back on the map for the Register’s Annual Bike Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI).

After spending the night in Waterloo, riders taking part in 2021 RAGBRAI were meant to pass through the towns of Raymar, Gilbertville, Brandon, and Urbana on the morning of July 29.

But those four towns have now been replaced by Jesup, Shady Grove, Rowley, and Walker in an attempt to avoid planned construction on the Highway 150 curve just outside of Urbana.

Mayor Guy Stacy of Brandon views the change as both a disappointment and a bit of a blessing.

“I don’t know of anybody that was too frustrated,” Stacy said when asked about the recent change that now left his town off the official 2021 RAGBRAI route.

“I hadn’t even attended a meeting yet about what to expect.”

Stacy said while it is discouraging to not be able to showcase his town’s features, the consequences that invariably arise from having thousands of people move through a very small town—Brandon’s population hovers just over 300—on their way to the next overnight stop will not necessarily be missed.


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