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  • COVID-19 Forces Cycle the Seacoast to Shift Gears

    PORTSMOUTH - Due to the potential spread of COVID-19, the American Lung Association has announced the annual Cycle the Seacoast fundraising ride in 2020 will be held virtually and the physical bike ride scheduled for May 3 will no longer take place. Effective immediately, participants will be able to track their own progress to complete their Cycle the Seacoast by cycling 25, 50 or 100 miles at their own pace to raise funds for the American Lung Association before June 30, 2020.
     
    "We are very grateful for the many people who have registered for our annual fundraising event. Based on guidelines from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and local government officials, we have decided to shift gears and avoid creating large gatherings of people, which is a natural part of our event. However, we want to build on the momentum of our participants, volunteers and supporters and not let COVID-19 get the best of us. After all, our ride is a fundraiser for the American Lung Association to raise awareness of and improve lung health, so we can't let this lung-related virus derail our work. This is an opportunity for us to come together to show our strength and our virtual options will empower people to do that," said Melissa Walden, manager of development for Cycle the Seacoast.
     
    The annual Cycle the Seacoast was originally scheduled for May 3 as a one-day event for riders ages seven and above, departing from Cisco Brewers in Portsmouth. Organizers have developed new ways for people to participate virtually now through June 30. 
    • Participants can share their miles on the Cycle the Seacoast Facebook page
    • Participants can take screenshots of their Strava and Zwift, Rouvy (formerly CycleOps) or other similar biking apps
    • Participants can track their miles using activity trackers (Apple Watch, Fitbit, etc.)
    • Participants will be able to download images to share their personal achievements and fundraising efforts with custom images on social media
    • Volunteers and supporters of the annual event can make donations to the American Lung Association at https://bit.ly/donatetoCTS
    For registration and fundraising information visit BikeTrekNewEngland.org. The Cycle the Seacoast staff will continue to support cyclists and their fundraising goals by offering incentives and giveaways for fundraising accomplishments through June 30, 2020. 
     
    All registrants who raise $200 by June 30 will receive a 2020 Cycle the Seacoast event t-shirt, medal and commemorative bib. Registrants who raise more than $400 will all receive an official Cycle the Seacoast cycling jersey and $50 Eastern Mountain Sports gift card. Since the physical ride won't be on a specific day, organizers are hoping more people will register to participate and take advantage of the virtual options through June 30. Current fundraising is well behind average years with less than half of the current $100,000 goal. 
     
    Cyclists will be able to interactively participate  in the Cycle the Seacoast fundraising ride Photo courtesy: Cycle the Seacoast
    The Cycle the Seacoast fundraising ride benefits the American Lung Association which helps save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through research, education and advocacy in New Hampshire and beyond. The efforts currently include COVID-19 research. Recently, American Lung Association researcher, Dr. John Schoggins, Ph.D., was credited with identifying a naturally occurring protein that has been shown to inhibit coronavirus infection. 
     
    "The coronavirus has impacted many of us in several different ways. We have seen that cycling is one of the best ways to get outside, be healthy and enjoy the fresh air while following physical distancing guidelines. As the weather continues to improve, we know people will want to get outside. Cycling and raising money for lung research is a great combination. We also know some people might not have been able to participate on the actual day of the event, so now this option will allow more people to get involved through June 30," said Jeff Seyler, chief division officer for the Eastern U.S.
     
                                                      
     
    Photo: Cyclists will be able to interactively participate in the Cycle the Seacoast fundraising ride Photo courtesy: Cycle the Seacoast 



    About the Cycle the Seacoast
    Cycle the Seacoast is a one-day, multi-route cycling event that is both challenging and fun for serious athletes to weekend warriors with kids in tow. Participants can choose from 25, 50 or 100 miles along the historic Seacoast in New Hampshire. Over 200 volunteers also participate in the event for the American Lung Association. Since 2010, this annual event has raised almost one million dollars for the American Lung Association.
     
    About the American Lung Association
    The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.