Sunrise at Pork Belly Ventures Camp in Des Moines
They cater to the “over 40” crowd. They really go out of their way to make you feel like family. (Yes, they’ll smack you if you act like one of their stupid relatives.)
They really go out of their way to make you as comfortable as a human being can possibly be. Granted, bicycling dozens of miles in the hot sun, sweating like a pig, and then camping out makes for a rather low bar to jump in terms of being comfortable, but, still.
|I think someone just didn’t want to walk a mile to the Kybo. They just peed on the closest tent . . .|
The list of amenities they offer is spectacular. Just this year (and off the top of my head) they have two semi-trailers they’ve converted to showers. (24 showers per trailer, I think.) They’ve got a trailer that does nothing but haul the luggage from 750+ riders. They have a tent set-up service if you don’t want to set up your own tent. (At least 250 of those. And each of those 250 tents has to be torn down and re-set-up by noon in the next down.)
They’ve even got a “rolling apartment” kind of service. Two more semi-trailers that they’ve converted into 8 “apartments”. Completely air conditioned. 4 bunks in each space. You don’t have to pack bags or tents. You just get on your bike in the morning and ride to the next town. When you get there, you just go into your little space.
They feed you three or four times per week. They’ve got a mid-week laundry service. (That’s the only thing I’ve discovered the crew is damned bitchy about. Other than that, the 75 to 100 people working for them are the nicest / politest / most helpful I’ve seen.) They offer free beer and lemonade. They offer free root beer floats multiple times per week.
They’re not, by any stretch of imagination, the least expensive group, but they sure know what they’re doing.
I tried to figure out how much they pull in from their operation each year. Just spit-balling, I bet they come close to three quarter million. Talked to some kid in the shower line yesterday who’s worked for them for several years. He said he works for Apple the other 51 weeks of the year. Said his week with PBV is kind of like a vacation . . . and he makes in a week what he makes in a month working for Apple.