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Tour de Nebraska Returns to Ord in 2017

LINCOLN – The 30th annual 5-day Tour de Nebraska bicycle adventure will head to beautiful Sandhills on its 275-mile round trip journey, June 21-25,2017. Up to 450 cyclists will leave St. Paul on Wednesday, June 21 and camp overnight in Loup City, Broken Bow and Ord.

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“It’s our 30th year, and we want to spend it someplace special and familiar. We are excited to return to the Nebraska Sandhills, an area we love for its quiet roads, dramatic vistas, winding rivers, cowboy towns, ranches, cattle, horses, wildlife and friendly people,” said Susan Larson Rodenburg, who organizes the tour with her husband, Rich.

The noncompetitive circle tour will start and end in St. Paul, 122 miles northwest of Lincoln. It will then proceed to overnights at Loup City (Wednesday, 6/21), Broken Bow (Thursday, 6/22) and Ord (Friday and Saturday, 6/23-24) and back to St. Paul on Sunday, June 25.

The Tour de Nebraska bicycle adventure is a mental and physical challenge for cyclists of all ages. Participants come from across Nebraska and other states, including California, Minnesota, Idaho, New Mexico, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, Virginia, Kansas, Missouri, South Dakota, Colorado, Iowa and Arizona.

“Our cyclists like the size of Tour de Nebraska because it’s big enough to meet some new people, but small enough not to overwhelm the communities we visit,” Susan Rodenburg said. “We have families, school teachers, busy executives and others who all share a passion for cycling and adventure. They can ride all day at their own speed so they can take full advantage of sightseeing and food in the small communities along the way. By the time the tour ends, we’re all bonded in one way or another.”

The Rodenburgs created Tour de Nebraska 30 years ago after many of their friends expressed interest in doing a statewide tour. It’s grown from 11 cyclists and is takes up to 450 cyclists. Tour de Nebraska arranges meals, rest stops, daily maps, itineraries, luggage/gear transfers, emergency sag support on the highway, daily fruit and water. Riders camp at city parks or near high schools. There are also indoor camping options at high school gyms.

The Official Bike Shop for Tour de Nebraska is Cycle Works of Lincoln, which provides mechanical support during the tour. Additional services include a tent service provided by University of Nebraska-Lincoln Outdoor Adventures and hot showers by Pork Belly Ventures of Council Bluffs, Iowa. “We are excited to services that allow for ‘pampered’ camping. We don’t want the thoughts of setting up a tent or going without a hot shower deter anyone from enjoying this adventure,” Rodenburg said. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The Rodenburgs help local communities along the route prepare for rest stops and overnight stays. “We encourage the communities to highlight their community spirit, history and friendliness – their uniqueness,” she said. “We work closely with the local organizers so they can provide everything we need. Most find that hosting Tour de Nebraska is a fun way to bring new revenue to the area. It’s always exciting to find out what they have planned for us.”

The favorite rest stop and overnight host towns chosen by the riders receive cash awards. “It’s a small token of thanks for their efforts,” Rodenburg said. Organizers also present daily spirit awards to build camaraderie among riders. The coveted Tour de Nebraska Team Spirit Award is presented during Saturday night’s Tour de Nebraska Banquet to a deserving individual or team who has shown a great amount of spirit and humor while facing the challenges of the tour.

Tour de Nebraska is 5 days instead of 7 like many other tours, making it perfect for first-time tourists or those with limited vacation schedules. There are many repeat riders. “It’s like a family reunion on wheels,” Rodenburg said.

The $295 registration fee includes: TDN t-shirt, daily maps and itineraries, TDN handbook, meal and camping arrangements, fruit, kick-off breakfast, sag service, luggage transport, yoga every afternoon and Saturday night’s Tour de Nebraska Awards dinner. Registration information is available online at: www.TourdeNebraska.com or by request to: Susan@TourdeNebraska.com, 402-440-3227.

Take a look a memories from Tour de Nebraska’s visit to Ord in 2015!

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