RAGBRAI Waukon hears "You nailed it!" at final review session with annual event directors, shares $32,000 profit with local organizations

Waukon Park, Recreation and Wellness was awarded $10,000 from the RAGBRAI Waukon 2017 profit of $32,000 to be designated for the construction of tennis courts. Pictured above, left to right, are Steph Dugan and Ardie Kuhse of the RAGBRAI Waukon Executive Committee, Waukon Park, Recreation and Wellness Director Jeremy Strub, and Dennis Lyons, Stefanie Perkins and Danette Jones of the RAGBRAI Waukon Executive Committee.

The Waukon Police Department was awarded $5,000 from the RAGBRAI Waukon 2017 profit of $32,000 to be designated for equipment. Pictured above, left to right, are Jeremy Strub and Ardie Kuhse of the RAGBRAI Waukon Executive Committee, Waukon Police Department Chief Phil Young and Assistant Chief Paul Wagner, and Dennis Lyons, Stefanie Perkins, Danette Jones and Steph Dugan of the RAGBRAI Waukon Executive Committee.

Members of the Executive Committee and Advisory Board of the local RAGBRAI Waukon organization put some more specific finishing touches on the RAGBRAI event that made its first venture into Allamakee County in four decades and its first-ever overnight stop in Waukon just over a month ago. Those local leaders sat down for a final review with RAGBRAI Director T.J. Juskiewicz and Assistant Director Scott Garner Wednesday, August 30, and members of the Executive Committee also recently distributed shares of the $32,000 profit Waukon RAGBRAI realized from RAGBRAI's Friday, July 28 overnight stop in Waukon.

Both Juskiewicz and Garner had extremely positive comments to share with local leaders in regard to a final review of the overnight event. "Waukon should be absolutely proud of hosting that many people for a first-time event like that," Juskiewicz said. "You guys hit it out of the park!"

Garner shared similar appreciation, noting that the post-event surveys he is in charge of conducting had "no negative marks or comments against Waukon, at all," adding, "You nailed it!" Both Juskiewicz and Garner said Waukon and Allamakee County can certainly look forward to RAGBRAI coming back this way at some point in the future, noting that many riders never knew this type of landscape existed in the state of Iowa, and that, along with the hospitality and the welcoming riders received, were among the highest marks Allamakee County received from this year's ride participants.

In turn, local committee and board members shared their thoughts on the event, also giving feedback to Juskiewicz and Garner on what seemed to work or not work so well locally.

The RAGBRAI Waukon Budget Committee also released some final numbers at the August 30 review session, noting that a profit of $32,000 was realized from the July 28 event and all its contingencies. Reports of $154,000 in revenues received were offset by $122,000 in expenses to make that profit a reality.

"RAGBRAI told us that communities can expect a profit percentage of five percent when they come through our town; ours was 20%," shared Budget Committee Chairperson Dennis Lyons. "And probably the best part about it is that we didn't utilize any direct funding from the City, it was all self-sustaining."

The Budget Committee released the following specifics in regard to the financial aspect of RAGBRAI Waukon 2017:

Beverage Garden    $62,400
Sponsorships    $30,000
T-shirt sales    $10,600
Bench sales    $7,000
Trash/recycle bin sales    $3,000
Vendor fees    $25,000
RAGBRAI/Other    $16,000
TOTAL    $154,000
* An estimate of an additional $30,000 was received in in-kind sponsorships and support that was not included above nor in the final profit calculation

Beverage Garden    $26,000
Insurance    $5,600
Entertainment    $32,700
T-shirts/Benches    $11,300
Additional Law Enforcement    $6,500
Signage/Detours    $5,500
Sanitation/Tents    $24,300
Other    $10,100
TOTALS    $122,000

That $32,000 profit has since been shared with various community organizations in a check distribution event held Wednesday, September 6. Most all of those organizations are pictured in the surrounding photos, with the breakdown of the Executive Committee's profit distribution decisions as follows:

• Waukon Park, Recreation and Wellness Department received $10,000 to help fund construction of new tennis courts near the current soccer fields across the street from the Waukon Wellness Center. The Waukon Park, Recreation and Wellness Department also recently received a $12,920 contribution to that project through a Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield promotion.
• The Waukon Police Department received $5,000. The contribution help offset some of the expense of the overtime compensation of the department officers, money otherwise designated for equipment purchases.
• The Waukon Art Advisory Committee was awarded $2,000 to serve as part of matching funds for a Scenic Byway grant received to help develop proposals for and the eventual funding of place-based public art in the community. A public art project is expected to be completed by the end of February 2019.
• Waukon Boy Scout Troop 64 received $1,000 in appreciation for the clean-up efforts of its members and leaders. The local troop worked before, during and after the event to coordinate can and bottle recycling efforts, reclaiming nearly 19,000 cans and bottles for recycling.
• The Partners in Vocational Education received $1,000 to be designated for equipment needs for the Waukon High School Construction class which is one of the programs supported by the Partners in Vocational Education group. The Construction class built all the benches sold for RAGBRAI Waukon fundraising efforts and used for additional seating throughout the community during RAGBRAI.
• Veterans Memorial Hospital Emergency Medical Services (EMS) received $1,000 in appreciation for the many hours put in both Friday and Saturday of RAGBRAI's Allamakee County visit aiding riders and others.
• The Allamakee ATV/UTV Club was awarded $500 in appreciation for club members' efforts in servicing the trash bins in the major camping areas throughout the Waukon community during RAGBRAI's visit.
• An amount totaling $4,000 was paid to various nonprofit organizations (churches, TASC, 4-H, etc.) for reimbursement of their vendor fees paid to be a part of RAGBRAI.
• An amount totaling $7,500 was set aside by the RAGBRAI Waukon Executive Committee for future event planning in Waukon.

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