KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — A Knoxville father and son who originally planned to spend Father's Day Weekend biking across the state of Maine are now doing the trek together virtually from across the country.
Chris Mainini lives in Knoxville, his son Kevin Mainini lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. They love cycling and spending time together doing what they love when they can.
"I always thought I just retired and thought I would be working on my bucket list, but I'm actually working on his bucket list," Chris Mainini laughed.
The pair has completed multiple treks and rides across the country, including one in San Diego and the RAGBREI bike ride across Iowa.
"That's what kind of put us on and we said well, 'We'll try one in Maine because why not,'" Kevin Mainini said. "Now, we can go get lobster and stay in a hotel room every night and enjoy the beach, completely different atmospheres than the states we live in currently."
The pair was supposed to celebrate Father's Day biking 180 miles in the "Trek Across Maine," but had to cancel their trip because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
It was supposed to be a reunion, but now they are hitting the pavement virtually, still logging miles for the virtual "Trek Across Maine" event.
"The point of these adventures together is kind of a reward for the training and everything that we do so it's sad that we won't be able to go to Maine, you know, it's just gonna be like another training ride," Kevin Mainini said.
That's the case for thousands of other cyclists too. They are biking where they live, some even opting for stationary bike rides to get the miles in.
The 36th annual trek, put on by the American Lung Association, has changed gears to raise money for COVID-19 research. Kim Chamard, a spokesperson for the Trek Across Maine, said it was important for the ALA to continue with the fundraiser in a new way.
"There's still that big sense of community and I think people still really feel connected, which is the entire purpose anyways which was what we were trying to do, is make people feel like they are still together even though we have to be apart," Chamard said.
So thousands of miles away, Kevin and Chris will virtually cross the finish line and celebrate another time.
"It will be good, we'll be well-trained," the pair laughed.
The "Trek Across Maine" is still accepting biking miles and donations until June 30. You can visit action.lung.org for more information.