More than 500 cyclists will enjoy the scenery and hospitality along the 248-mile loop route through northeast Nebraska during the 31st Tour de Nebraska bicycle adventure, June 20-24.
“Tour de Nebraska is a perfect multi-day tour for first-time tourists to seasoned veterans," said Charlie Schilling, Tour de Nebraska director. "Our adventure is all about experiencing beautiful Nebraska from the seat of a bicycle. We are excited to highlight the friendly towns, people and places unique to northeast Nebraska in 2018.”
The noncompetitive loop tour will start and end in Plainview, 153 miles northwest of Lincoln, and proceed to overnights at Neligh (Wednesday, June 20), O’Neill (Thursday, June 21) and Niobrara (Friday and Saturday, June 22-23), and back to Plainview on Sunday, June 24.
“Cyclists of all ages come from over 25 states to enjoy Tour de Nebraska,” said Schilling. “Everyone rides at their own pace and enjoys sightseeing, culture and food along the route. Each rest stop and overnight town has its own unique flavor.”
This year’s highlights include tours that showcase where the movie "Nebraska" was filmed in Plainview, the Air Force Band and a scavenger hunt in Neligh, the Irish capital of Nebraska in O’Neill and Ponca Chief Standing Bear’s homeland and water activities on the Missouri River and Niobrara River as riders spend two days in Niobrara.
Tour de Nebraska was founded in 1988 and has grown from 11 to more than 500 cyclists. Organizers arrange meals, rest stops, daily maps, itineraries, luggage/gear transfers, emergency sag support, daily fruit and water. Riders camp at city parks or high schools. Indoor camping options are available at high school gyms.
Schilling and his staff help local communities along the route prepare for rest stops and overnight stays.
“We work closely with the local organizers so they can provide everything we need," he said. "Hosting Tour de Nebraska is a fun way to share their heritage and bring new revenue to the area."
Tour de Nebraska also offers a cash stipend to every overnight host town and cash awards to the favorite rest stop and overnight host towns chosen by the riders.
The $295 registration fee for the five-day bicycle tour includes: TDN t-shirt, daily maps and itineraries, TDN app, meal and camping arrangements, fruit, kick-off breakfast, sag service, luggage transport, yoga every afternoon and Saturday night’s Tour de Nebraska awards dinner.