Des Moines Area Luncheon and Speaker Series

The Des Moines Area Luncheon and Speaker Series is open to all alumni, parents, and friends of the college. Please join us for this great opportunity to network and socialize with others in the Des Moines area and learn from interesting and dynamic speakers.  

Friday, February 17, 2017

Speakers: Kai Ashland '14 and Ben Harney '15
"To the End of the Earth"
A six month journey bicycling 5,000 miles from the northern border of Mexico to "the end of the earth," Ushuaia, Argentina.

After graduation, Luther College alumni Kai Ashland '14, Ben Harney '15, and Jon Williams '15, embarked on the adventure of a lifetime. Instead of jumping straight into careers or grad school, they departed on September 9, 2015, to ride bicycles for six months. From the northern border of Mexico to “the end of the earth” in Ushuaia, Argentina, their trip spanned 5,000 miles, covered two continents, and encountered nine countries.

Their route took them along muddy gravel river beds, desolate back country roads, high mountain passes, and busy city thoroughfares, while at the same time showing them some of the most stunning scenery in the world—from the coasts of Mexico and the rain forests of southern Ecuador to the glaciers of Patagonia.

They made connections they will never forget. In northern Mexico a family saw that the men were struggling and offered them food and a place to sleep for the night. In southern Mexico a man gave them keys to his apartment so they could rest up while coming and going as they pleased. And in Guatemala a boy and his mother spotted the three exhausted cyclists resting under a tree and brought out bananas, oranges, and loaves of fresh-baked cornbread.

Giving Back
Kai, Ben, and Jon also used this trip to raise funds for Winneshiek County Habitat for Humanity. Each of them had spent time volunteering for Habitat on the construction of a home and felt connected to their mission. They raised $6,000 to give to Winneshiek County Habitat for Humanity.

Event Information

11:00 a.m. Registration
11:30 a.m. Buffet luncheon begins
12:00 p.m. Program
1:00 p.m. Event ends

$15.00 per person. Please register online by the end of the day on Wednesday, February 15th.

Windsor Heights Community Center
6900 School Street, Colby Park
Windsor Heights, Iowa
515-645-6821

The dates for the academic year 20162017 are:

Friday, November 11th, 2016 - Maren Beard '08, Luther College Center for Sustainability
Friday, February 17th, 2017 - Kai Ashland '14 and Ben Harney '15
Friday, April 21st, 2017 - Amber (Kobler) Lynch '03

Planning Committee:
Eric Carlson '89, Kris Gregersen '82, Jerry Jaeger '09, Cara Kennedy-Ode '94, John Kenworthy '88, Suzanne (Roverud) Mineck '96, Becky (Linnevold) Shaw '71, Anjie Shutts '93

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