On June 22, Canadian Chris Greig, 25, from Oakville, Ontario, will embark on an 8,000-kilometer self-funded bicycle tour from Fairbanks, Alaska to Miami, Fla. The bike tour, which Greig has named the “Campaign for Good News,” is an effort to bring some much needed positive and uplifting news stories to the public.
Campaign for Good News Welcome Message
“On June 22nd, 2012, I start an 8 thousand kilometer solo bicycle ride from Alaska to Florida, where in 30 communities along the route I’m going to feature some sort of good news story from the place I’m staying in that night.”
“I don’t think it’s naive to say that there is value in hearing positive news stories,” Greig said during a phone interview just days before his trip. “Though I understand that an informed public is one that hears all news regardless of how distasteful or unsettling it may be, I think a better balance could be struck.”
Greig is funding the trip primarily on his own, offering a way for supporters to help him by spreading the word about his mission. The only donations Greig is accepting are by way of free accommodations at hotels along the way. Four Westmark hotels have already volunteered to sponsor the bike tour and will host Greig and his bike for a total of seven nights at various locations along his route.
“I appreciate Westmark helping because they did so before any other sponsor – before the campaign became more established to what it now is, “Greig said. “I think that shows they were in it for the right reasons, because they cared.”
Greig’s website says he began riding bikes in 2009 when he set out on his first solo, self-funded bike tour across Canada to raise money for cancer in memory of a childhood friend. That trip sparked his interest in biking both for fun and for a cause.
During his 30-day journey from Alaska to Florida Greig will post to his website a different story from each of the communities he passes through on his tour. He describes the stories, which he is keeping a secret until published, as uplifting “good news” stories. Each day, Greig will shoot a new video and upload it to his blog along with his story of the day. Followers of Greig’s campaign can see his real-time position on a GPS map 24 hours a day.
With a goal of finishing the tour in 30 days, Greig will have to travel more than 250 kilometers each day, which he said would take 10 to 12 hours. That time does not include stopping to eat, rest, or the filming and blogging he will be doing in each community.
“I won’t be sleeping much obviously,” Greig said. Despite the numerous hours spent on the bike, pedaling up and down hills, sometimes without seeing another soul for miles on end, Greig isn’t worried about getting bored on his bike. “There is enough motivation already for me to make it to my next destination with everyone following my progress online,” he said. “Plus it will be all new scenery for me so the time will fly by seeing all of these new places.”
Greig said he hopes that the campaign will demonstrate that there is a lot more going on in the world than the stories usually aired on the evening news.
“Basically the whole idea is to inspire and uplift people. That is what I am all about and this is just one way to do that. People have already told me that they think this is going to be a really positive thing and they are excited about it,” Greig said. Followers are apparently so excited about his upcoming trip that Greig might actually have to switch his website hosting services because the current host may not be able to handle the amount of traffic his site is currently generating.
Greig will be staying at Westmark hotels along his journey from Fairbanks to Whitehorse during his trip:
Westmark Fairbanks Hotel & Conference Center: June 18 – 21
Westmark Whitehorse Hotel and Conference Center: June 25
Check back for photos from Greig’s stays at our hotels.
To follow Greig on his journey, visit the Campaign for Good News website.