Rising rivers won't halt Q-C's big weekend


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Originally Posted Online: July 28, 2011, 9:56 pm
Last Updated: July 29, 2011, 2:40 pm
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By Rachel Warmke, rwarmke@qconline.com

More than 100,000 people are expected to converge on the Quad-Cities Saturday when Davenport hosts the final leg of RAGBRAI, the Bix 7 and Street Fest.

In a news conference Thursday afternoon, city and tourism officials said the potential for rising river levels hasn't changed any plans for the downtown events.

"We're still planning for a great party," assistant city administrator Tanisha Briley said. "The RAGBRAI, the Bix race, the Street Fest, the farmer's market, our baseball games this weekend are all planning to go forward."

Officials said they expected any flooding to be minimal but will be prepared if any problems arise.

Although no additional flood walls are expected to be erected, thecity's Emergency Operations Center has been opened and residents along South Concord Street are advised to monitor flood warnings and take any necessary precautions.

The rising river is not expected to affect the 15,000 participants of the Quad City Times Bix 7 road race, which starts in downtown Davenport at 8 a.m. Saturday.

The Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, a seven-day, 452.8 -mile ride, with 15,000 riders, ends Saturday with the ceremonial front-tire dip in the Mississippi River at the Marquette Street Boat Ramp.

If the river rises too much, RAGBRAI participants camping at Credit Island and the dip site will be relocated, said Joe Taylor, Quad-Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau president and CEO.

The annual street fest on 2nd Street, from 10 a.m. to midnight today and 9 a.m. to midnight Saturday, also is expected to draw large crowds. Admission is free for the fest, which includes live music, food vendors, arts and crafts, video game tournaments and a NASCARsimulator.

Davenport police Capt. Dave Struckman said additional parking will be available downtown this year. There also will be marked areas where people can pick up RAGBRAI riders and medical tents.

"We're down to almost D-Day and we're going to experience problems, without a doubt," he said. "There will be thousands and thousands of people, but it's our job to find solutions and resolve it."







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