Pork Belly Update #22---Your Arrival in Pork Camp, an d Courtesy

July 22, 2021
Dear Porkers, 
THIS UPDATE COULD BE USEFUL FOR JUST ABOUT EVERYBODY.  It is your last one before the ride.
Three Parts to This Update!
  • Dinners--Included and Optional
  • Everything related to Check-In for Weeklong Support in LeMars
  • What We Expect in Terms of Courtesy
 If you're scrambling a little---we know how that is---print this one and read it on your way to Iowa. 
Six Dinner Menus
with Pork Belly Ventures:
3 Included,
3 Optional
Please see our menus below. All dinners are served from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, to allow those who may be late coming into camp, shuttling back from town, or hurrying from the showers to enjoy these meals. Remember that our entertainment usually begins at 6:00 and goes through the dinner serving window, until 8:00 p.m. We don't want you to miss our meals or entertainment, but your time is yours to manage as you see fit.
At check-in on Saturday in LeMars, you will have the opportunity to select and pay for any optional meals that appeal to you. We encourage you to consider your daily mileage and our entertainment--as well as the menus--when making these decisions. We cannot be certain that our caterers will allow us to continue selling these meals after we give them our totals on Saturday night. So Saturday is the time to decide and purchase any optional dinners!
Saturday in LeMars. You'll be roaming on gathering day--to and from the big Expo--but we will have a food vendor in camp for you, all day and into the evening.
Sunday in Sac City
INCLUDED Welcome Supper! 
84 miles today!
On Pork Stage Tonight: MK Ultra with the Burney Sisters for a Stompgrass Vibe!
Menu: Grilled Chicken Breast, Potato Salad, Rotini salad, and green lettuce salad, dinner roll, and brownie
*Vegetarian: Vegetarian Lasagna
Provided by our friends at The Villager/Family Table
Monday in Fort Dodge
67 miles today.
On Pork Stage Tonight: The (beautiful, talented) Burney Sisters
Menu: Sausage Pasta Bake (sausage, yellow squash, zucchini, and red onion with mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce), honey glazed carrots, green salad (spring mix with French or Ranch, Dinner roll and cookie
*Vegetarian: Pasta bake with onion, peppers and squash
Provided by Michael Payne and Olde Boston Pub of Ft Dodge
Tuesday in Iowa Falls
55 miles today
On Pork Stage Tonight: Billy and the Downliners--you'll want to dance!
Menu: Beef and noodles, dinner roll, vegetable broccoli salad, spring mix, strawberry salad, cookie and fruit
*Vegetarian: Vegetarian meatball with noodles
Provided by Great Western Dining and Ellsworth College
Wednesday in Waterloo
68 miles today
On Pork Stage Tonight: Natalie Dark and Her Talented Friend
Menu: Pulled Pork Sandwich on a bun, black-eyed peas, candied sweet potatoes, green salad. Dessert not included, but available: Pound cake and fruit pies by the slice.
*Vegetarian: Black bean burgers
Provided by Mt. Carmel Baptist Church of Waterloo
Thursday in Anamosa
85 miles today!
On Pork Stage Tonight: Grand Ave Ruckus, 8 guys with horns and drums
Menu: Seasoned boneless porkchop, homemade baked macaroni and cheese, creamy coleslaw, fresh mixed greens garden salad, and buttery corn bread.
*Vegetarian: Stuffed green peppers
Provided by the Avacentre and the Pork Producers of Jones County
Friday in DeWitt
64 miles today
On Pork Stage Tonight: Vertigo, an amazing BluesEd Band, plus Hallelujah Singalong
Menu: Jambalaya with Sausage, kernel corn, garlic bread, salad and cookie.
*Vegetarian: Meatless jambalaya
Provided by Sandy, our wonderful local caterer in DeWitt!
ABOVE: One of our catered dinners a while back
--hmm, looks like the vegetarian version of that dinner!
Other possible food options, in camp and downtown: If you decline our optional dinners, you should be prepared to board a shuttle to a church or to the downtown area, where most of RAGBRAI will be choosing among the food vendors. Also, we will have afternoon/evening lunch vendors in camp--a different vendor each day-- usually through dinner. If you decline an optional dinner and if you are too tired on that day to go in search of other meal options among the downtown vendors, we hope these Pork Camp vendors will have something you like. In our update called "Our Week in the Corn," we have detailed the offerings of our afternoon/evening vendors.
BELOW: One of our 2019 food vendors--the swim team in Indianola.
When your bus rolls into our campsite in LeMars, somebody on our crew will try to jump onboard and give you some direction about where things are located. Be sure to unload or claim your bags from the coach. You can check in right away, if you like, at our Front Desk under the red canopies alongside our Roll With It trailer. When bike trucks roll into camp, be sure to claim your bicycle from the bike truck. Our crew will unload the bike trucks.
RIGHT: This new perforated check-in sheet--which you cannot tear--will revolutionize the PBV check in process! The tent address card (bottom segment) will already be on the rental tents when you arrive in LeMars. Your locations card, your meal card, and your baggage tags are all together on a single sheet, with all of your vital info at the top (for our use)!
NOTE: The rental tent owner (who has the tent on his/her application) may get all four bag tags. Tentmates may need to get their tags from their mates. Anyhow, put your bag tags on your bags Saturday!
CHOOSE Before You Arrive:
  • Look back at the menus of our optional meals above.
  • Decide before you arrive in LeMars whether you want one, two, or all three of these meals.
  • Decide before you arrive in LeMars whether you want our Midweek Laundry Service for $20. (You can read about it in the June Letter.)
  • Decide before you arrive whether to purchase one or more beverage punch cards? Cold beverages in camp are $1 each, but if you use our handy punch card, you'll get 11 beverages for $10 and faster service. You can purchase punch cards, or you can just buy beverages at $1-per all week. 
  • Please be sure of these things when you arrive in LeMars, so that you don't slow down your own check-in process and that of others.
Stations at Check-in
Check-in is organized by last name, obviously. We'll have stations for early alphabet, middle alphabet, and late alphabet, etc.
You will need ID when you check in. One person may not check in for the whole group. Each individual must check in for himself. Please have your ID ready.
RAGBRAI Wristband
In order to receive the Pork Bracelet that entitles you to Pork Goodies all week, you must have your RAGBRAI Wristband on your wrist at check-in.
Your Pork Bracelet admits you to the shower, to the supper line, and every other thing we have planned for your convenience, comfort, and entertainment. We will put your bracelet on your wrist.
Pork Cups
We will issue you a Pork Cup at check-in. This is for your morning coffee and other beverages. If you bring us a broken Pork Cup during the week, we will replace it. We will not replace lost cups. Keep track of your Pork Cup.
Meal Cards
You will get a PBV Meal card at check-in, for our included meals and for any optional meals you purchase. This meal card is like money. If you lose your meal card, you will have to pay for a replacement. Seriously, right now, think about where you will keep your meal card. Keep it where you keep your cash. Keep track of it.
International Folks
Tell us at check-in if you are from another country. We'll have fewer of you this year--darn! But we know that your RAGBRAI packets were not mailed to you.
Cash Only
From January to mid-July, the form of payment is credit card or check in the mail. At RAGBRAI, we accept cash.
By the way, there's an ATM in camp on Sunday in Sac City.
[During the week, most convenience stores, supermarkets, and banks across the state of Iowa have ATM machines. At least we think so.]
Baggage Tags
Everybody on Pork Belly gets two bags, and you will receive your baggage tags at check-in. We have two types of baggage tags: one type, with your tent number, for those in our rental tents, another for everyone on the charter. The tag for everyone has a spot for your name and cell phone number. Please complete your tags and attach them to your two bags.
Every Porker is responsible for putting contact information on your bags. Use the tag you normally use when you travel. Let's tag the heck out of those bags!
We'll have a station for signing up with our massage therapists (after 9:00 on Saturday) or claiming your appointment cards if you have already made appointments.
Souvenir Pork Shirts
Everybody on weeklong support gets one of our new shirts at check-in. We hope you like them.
Shipped Bikes and Bags
All shipped items will be available to claim in camp. If we are storing boxes or bike cases for you during the week, you will see a place to put those when they are empty. We would like you to flatten boxes for weeklong storage, please.
Bike Mechanics
Our mechanics are great guys and gals, and they will put in some long hours on Saturday. Please don't go off to the Expo until you have finished with your bike. Use their help as early as you can, please.
Pork Showers
Available on site in the afternoon and until about 8:00 p.m.
We're condensing to bullet points on being a courteous Porker and Living Like a Pig.
RAGBRAI attracts good-natured people like you. You're probably accustomed to being courteous even when you are temporarily uncomfortable. Thanks for reading these reminders. 
  • In any hotels, in Omaha, Des Moines, or throughout the week of RAGBRAI, be good to the staff and respect the furnishings. No bike work in hotel rooms (in Omaha or Des Moines). Believe it or not, people have carelessly stained carpet and linens with bike grease in the distant past. We know you won't.
  • If you took our indoor sleeping opportunities, respect our hosts. Lock bikes outside. Carry only one type of beverage-- bottled water -- into the sleeping area. Carry trash out with you in the morning. Be courteous of other campers during the night. Lights out at 10:00 p.m. The point is a good night's sleep for all. And besides, leaving our hosts happy this year will help us to persuade future indoor sleeping hosts.
  • Be on time. If you're using our sag or taking our bus to hotels, you must be on time for the coach. Everybody's happy when the bus rolls on time.
  • If you have made a massage appointment, keep it. Standing up your therapist is bad form. You may wish to take the therapist’s cell phone number and text if you are delayed for some reason.
  • Be courteous on the bike. If you encounter people who are struggling, please defer to them. Do not shout "On your left" at a slower rider. Yield the right of way. Show concern for other riders. It's good karma.
  • Approach the kybo door with caution. Knock, even if the thingy says "Open." People forget to latch.
  • Remember: Be out of Tent City by 7:00. Have your bags on the truck by 7:00. Be courteous to our crew, who need five morning hours to do a lot of work.
  • Never climb onto a Pork Belly truck or vehicle. Not a baggage truck. Not an equipment truck. During the week, CREW ONLY on all Pork vehicles except the SAG bus.
  • READ THE ANNOUNCEMENT BOARD EACH DAY. Lots of pithy, helpful info there, and evening Pork Events and menus. After you read the board, say hi to the Front Desk crew and they'll be glad to help you with any questions.
  • Look at the COB daily--this is our Campground Orientation Board. It will show you the locations of all Pork Equipment. You can snap a photo of it to get oriented in camp each day. Where are the Showers? Where are the charging trailers, the mechanics, the massage therapists? Check the COB near our Front Desk.
  • In camp, whisper after 10:00 p.m. and before 5:30 a.m. We have placed friends next to each other in Tent City in good faith that you will be quiet for the sake of your other neighbors, please.
  • Our crew members have real-life jobs that require them to analyze and solve problems, direct others, save lives and property, and work as members of a team. They are teachers, managers, paramedics, firefighters, students, moms, dads, good neighbors, and fine citizens. Be pleasant and courteous to our crew.
  • Be pleasant and courteous to our crew.
Pork Hours of Operation 
On any day of the week, if you have any questions about when our events happen or when our equipment is available to you, check the boards, look at the COB, or ask at our Front Desk.
Each day, we'll make an effort to post on our announcement boards what's happening at what time in camp that day and the next day.
Here are some general guidelines, and like most things on RAGBRAI, most of these times are approximate: 
  • Front Desk: noon to 8:00 p.m.
  • Morning coffee and local breakfast venders: 4:45 to 7:00 a.m.
  • Assistance with our Pump Thingy: around 6:30 a.m. for a while
  • Pump Thingy, self-serve: 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
  • Pork Showers: Around 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. One trailer will stay open a little later, if needed.
  • Evening meals, shindigs, entertainment: begin serving at or before 6:00, end serving at 8:00.
  • Live music: Coincides with dinner
  • Front Desk/Cold Beverages: 11:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. (Remember to get beverages before we close the desk at night.)
  • Lemonade: 2:00 through dinner
  • Juice Thingys for charging your phones and devices: trailer open from 5:00 a to 10:00 p, locked up overnight, but still charging.
  • Shower Thingy: from noon, overnight and until 7:00 a.m.
  • Bike Mechanics in camp: about 3:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.
  • Massage Therapy: about 1:00 p.m. to about 10:00 p.m. Some therapists may book appointments outside these hours. Check at the massage tent.
  • SAG Sign-up: 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
On Tuesday, give us dirty laundry by 8:00 p.m., please.
***If you end up staying on the road until almost dark, you will miss out on many of the comforts, conveniences, and the fun stuff included in your weeklong support from PBV. By all means, ride your own RAGBRAI and do what's fun for you. But if you stay on the road, just know that you may miss Pork activities, equipment, or services. (FYI, RAGBRAI stops services on the route at 6:00 p.m. or a little later.)
Pork Crew Hours of Operation
Cardinal Sin of PBV: awakening crew members. You can see from the information above that our crew works long days. The first batch of coffee is brewing at 4:30 a.m., and our evening load for the night run goes on until about 11:00 p.m. The night-run crew will not go to sleep until 1:00 a.m. or later. So our crew sometimes needs naps in the afternoon, and they need several hours of continuous sleep during the night. If you forget your phone or electronics on our chargers, don't wake us. Claim your stuff in the morning. If you see a crew member napping, do not wake him or her. If you attend a town street dance, re-enter our campground quietly and find your way to bed without disturbing others. Thank you.
Pork Photographers
Official Pork Videographer Pat Rainey will be flying his drone around and shooting video--please wave. Austin Uhlig will point cameras at you. Ham it up, make a face, show some teeth! We'll make a great slide show after the ride.
What to do if something goes wrong during Our Week in the Corn? Well, something will. We have approximately a bajillion moving parts on this charter, and regular ol' human beings are running the show. So, we figure, you plan and you plan and you plan, and then you're ready to catch curve balls and roll with it.
It will rain, and then it will shine. You'll be hot and sweaty, and then you'll be cool and clean. A misplaced bag can usually be found inside of fifteen minutes. If you forgot something, we can probably lend it to you. If you're feeling upset, talk to us and give us a chance to help you. We have upwards of one hundred able-bodied, good-natured, joke-telling, fun-loving crew members to help you. Together, we can handle what comes.
Over the next couple days, we'll meet you on one side of Iowa or the other. Until then, we remain,
Your friends,
Tammy and Pete