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Smallest Town on RAGBRAI Prepares to Roll Out the Welcome Mat

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BUCKEYE, Iowa -- The announcement of the RAGBRAI route took the people of Buckeye by surprise. The Hardin County town has only 108 residents and is the smallest town the massive ride will swing through.

Mayor Gordon Kolterman said they learned of the ride passing through when it was announced.

"It was kind of a surprise," said Kolterman. "Nobody contacted us ahead of  time, we thought we'll just take a shot at it and do what we can."

To get to Buckeye riders will loop a half mile east into town, then back out to the route. There is no through street in Buckeye. The town slogan reads "the end of the line on Highway 359."

"The street ends at the end of main street, so there are two reasons you come to Buckeye, you are either lost, or you're coming here.  Highway 359 ends in downtown Buckeye.

Phyllis Smuck has lived in Buckeye almost her entire life.  "I love it because we hardly have any crime," said Smuck. "It's a small town, but the people here are good to each other."

The Mayor said he was able to attend a recent RAGBRAI host organizing meeting in Webster City. There he got ideas on what Buckeye might offer visitors.

Kolterman said they are considering selling ice cream, and displaying some old cars and tractors.

The big question is, what will riders want at the last stop before overnight destination of Iowa Falls?

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