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Riverside has linked its identity with the Star Trek franchise, calling itself the future birthplace of Capt. James Kirk.
It makes sense then that the city’s slogan for RAGBRAI is “Ride Long and Prosper,” a take-off on the Star Trek Vulcan greeting of “live long and prosper.”
The city is leaning on its experience staging the annual TrekFest community celebration as the basis for its RAGBRAI planning.
At the core of its plan is signing a number of bands to provide entertainment throughout the day. The City Council recently approved up to $12,000 for RAGBRAI Committee Chairman Kevin Meller to spend on bands and entertainment.
Meller led a meeting of about 20 people on Sunday, April 22, to solicit ideas for keeping riders in town when RAGBRAI rolls through on Friday, July 27.
Meller echoed City Council sentiments about the need to showcase the community that day.
“We cannot buy this kind of marketing and advertising,” he said.
Meller said Riverside will be establishing a single tent for community organizations where they will only have to pay a single permit fee for everybody in the tent.
The permit fee will be $300 for all groups, organizations and vendors.
Meller said that statewide RAGBRAI organizers said that all vendors need to be charged the same fee.
“We cannot discriminate against out-of-town groups,” he said.
Entertainment plans include bands from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., a waterslide and splash pad, a human foosball table, a giant Jenga game, and a slip and slide. The nationally competitive Highland High School robotics team will offer demonstrations.
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