Pork Belly Update #6-The Buzz about Birds & Bees

March 28, 2021
Dear Porkers,
We are flush with good news these days, and on a warm afternoon, we can already smell the soil. These March rains will green things up in no time.
Maybe you're thinking how nice it will be to take a long spring weekend, saddle up, and do the thing you love... join a bicycle tour for the first time in a long time.
We have just the tour for you.
Top 10 Reasons
to Ride Birds & Bees
on May 21-24
It's Not Steep.
These are gentle miles, 22 each day. The trail used to be a crooked little railroad, so the inclines are gradual and the declines are wonderful.
It's Not Steep.
(The Other "Steep")
The entry fee for this fully supported 4-day ride is only $199.
Don't see that every day.
(Check out all the inclusions below.)
Hit the
Small Time.
If real life is hectic for you, Birds & Bees is the antidote. We're planning for 150 riders, passing through Mineola (pop. 166), Silver City (pop. 245), Malvern (pop. 1143), Imogene (pop. 72), and Shenandoah (pop. 4728). For these four days, life gets
pretty small.
A Good Groove
We just booked the Burney Sisters, a sweet duo from Missouri, to play on our little wooden stage. We'll book bands on all three nights, so that come May, you can get up and dance or lean back and listen while the sun goes down.
Meet New Peeps
RAGBRAI's Ride Director is a big fan of Malvern, Iowa. Dieter Drake, Anne Lawrie, Andrea Parrott, and other RAGBRAI crew members will ride Friday and hang around to chat. So far, riders are traveling from from South Carolina, Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, Kansas, Colorado, Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Iowa to ride Birds & Bees.
Toast A Marshmallow
At Boehner Pond, our campsite in Malvern on Friday and Sunday nights, we will have fire pits at our disposal. Hang on till dusk, and we got the marshmallows.
Art Appreciation
You may not associate southwest Iowa with art. Think again.
The Backside of a Pig
on Your Souvenir
It will be a collector's item.
A Big Welcome
Waiting for You.
This past week, we drove down to Malvern and met with the artists of the community, the restaurant owners, the city clerk, and folks with the Malvern Betterment Association. They're creating a tiny town festival around you--planning for what you'd like to eat, drink, see and do while you're on Birds & Bees.
FYI, we're coordinating with folks in Malvern (and Shen) on optional breakfasts in camp. Stay tuned.
ABOVE: That's my friend Sue and me in Malvern, having a couple beers al fresco before pedaling north again. There's also a wine bar, a little grocery, and some nice restaurants, but we just
grabbed a couple Stellas.
BELOW: Here's one I snapped on the Wabash last November, south of Silver City.
Pure Beauty
The Wabash was listed among the top rail-trails in the country. We knew that, but here's what they said:
"This jewel of southwest Iowa provides an idyllic route from Council Bluffs through a chain of small towns down to the Missouri border. Scenery along the northern part of the trail includes the windswept Loess Hills.... History buffs can spy remnants of ghost towns that disappeared along with the once-bustling Wabash Railway."
That's true.
And one more...
It's Almost
Time to
Get Out Again.
And Play.
You've toughed it out. So have we. You've made it through. We have, too. That seems like something to celebrate together, doesn't it?
Download Our Flyer, Below.
Here's our little flyer. Just click on it to download and share with your friends. If you're within driving distance of Iowa (and who isn't?), come on out and ride with us.
Feel The Wabash
To virtually experience rolling on the Wabash Trace, ride along with Pat for a bit. Just click on the image below!
Birds & Bees officially begins on Friday about noon, but feel free to show up early and do the Taco Ride on Thursday, 5/20. No change in our entry fee, and there's a little up-charge to add Thursday night in your rental tent or your PHAT Room.
Dieter Drake, Anne Lawrie, and Andrea Parrott will stay over and ride Friday of Birds & Bees. They're excited to chat with Birds & Bees Riders in Malvern!
Wait, Here's Yet Another Reason
to Ride
Birds & Bees...
The Taco Ride...
Every Thursday in the summer, hundreds of people saddle up in the late afternoon and ride 10 miles down the Wabash and back. Destination: Tobey Jack's in the center of Mineola.
This weekly event is called The Taco Ride, but you can order anything on the menu, sit inside or out, enjoy beer, wine, and spirits and usually some live music on the patio.
RAGBRAI and their crew will be part of the Taco Ride on Thursday, May 20, as part of their spring Road Show. Look for their merchandise trailer in downtown Mineola!
Complete information about RAGBRAI's Spring Road Show will be available online Wednesday, March 31.
When you use our rental tent, our crew handles your set-up, take-down, and moving your bags throughout the tour. We're happy to place friends next to each other. Just be sure you have a common group name on your Birds & Bees applications.
Rental tents are just $165 for this tour. Two people can share and split that cost.
You only unpack once when you choose our PHAT Rooms for your accommodation on Birds & Bees.
Rooms feature knotty pine interiors and laminate flooring. We provide mattresses, linens, and blankets. Charge your devices on outlets next to your bed. There are switched lights at the head of each bed, along with fans to circulate the air and provide white noise.
Rooms are air-conditioned: you can control the temperature in your room.
PHAT Rooms are just
a fraction of their price on RAGBRAI or other tours,
On Birds & Bees:
Only $595 per room.
Rooms can be shared by
up to 5 sleepers.
Got an RV?
Bring it for a small up-charge. Remember, we don't have hook-ups in camp on the 22nd in Shenandoah. But we got 'em in Malvern on the 21st and 23rd.
The Birds & Bees Entry Fee includes:
  • All trail user fees,
  • Camping fees in our reserved campsites,
  • Baggage transport daily,
  • Morning coffee,
  • Daily refreshment stop on the trail,
  • Charging station for phones and devices (e-bikes welcome, charging available),
  • Daily hot private shower and towel,
  • Cold beverages in camp (some free, some $1),
  • Live music on stage in or near camp,
  • Daily town maps,
  • Souvenir Birds & Bees t-shirt
  • Our Cheerful Pork Crew to Serve You.
Sign Up Right Here...
After a long haul, we have reached the Spring! The birds are chirping, and the bees are buzzing. You're on our minds, folks, and we would like nothing better than to celebrate the opening of the Pork Belly Ventures 2021 cycling season with you on Birds & Bees.
Your friends,
Tammy and Pete
Pork Belly Ventures LLC 
Tammy: 712.328.0161 h, 808-375-8921 c, tammy@pkbelly.com
Pete: 402-681-2613 c, pete@pkbelly.com