RAGBRAI began in 1973, when Des Moines Register feature writers John Karras and Donald Kaul decided to go on a bicycle ride across Iowa. Both men were avid cyclists. Karras challenged Kaul to do the ride and write articles about the experience.

Now the organizers of this giant summer bike ride across Iowa are cutting ties with its longtime sponsor Des Moines Register. This event brings thousands of bikers and others to Iowa for a week of activities.

According to the RAGBRAI website, Director TJ Juskiewicz announced that he and the entire RAGBRAI staff have resigned. The letter stated: “I have always been totally transparent with the RAGBRAI Nation and have earned their trust since my first day in 2003. In these past few weeks, my efforts to communicate with our loyal riders has been consistently blocked as it did not mesh with the company’s PR narrative to spin the Carson King embarrassment. There are hundreds of questions that have been left unanswered in an attempt to save face for the Register, without regard to how it affects RAGBRAI.”

Carson King is the 24 year old man who gained fame for publicly hold a sign that read “Bush Light Supply Needs Replenishing!” The publicity he generated has subsequently raised $3 million that has been donated to kids.

Middle Tennessee v Iowa
Getty Images - Carson King

During Kings rise to fame some racially charged tweets generated years ago by King were made public via a Des Moines Register reporter.

KCRG.com reported that a former RAGBRAI organizer stated: "We'll continue RAGBRAI's longstanding tradition in 2020 with another great bicycle ride and strong partnerships with Iowa communities to raise money for good causes." Terrell said in response to an email from The Associated Press.

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