Trekking enthusiasts will now be able to take on the iconic JFK 50 Mile charity challenge from anywhere in the world with the event set to go virtual for 2020.
The traditional charity fundraiser on the stunning Moylagh route across Meath, Westmeath and Cavan regrettably had to be cancelled this year due to Covid-19 restrictions.
However, the new virtual event will see participants complete as much of the challenge as they can from a location of their choice on Saturday 8th August, with their progress tracked on a virtual map of the traditional trek.
The challenge is based on an endurance test handed down by John F Kennedy to the US military to cover 50 miles on foot within 20 hours, and has raised more than €750,000 for cancer charities since the first event nine years ago.
Explaining the new twist, organiser Gerry McDonnell said: “We are extremely excited about the virtual walk as anyone can now be part of it. Once you register and start uploading your walk or run you will be placed on the virtual map showing your progress along the Moylagh route.
“The page will also be used as your online fundraising page which you can share with your family and friends,” he added.
Moylagh JFK 50 Mile Challenge Chairman Johnny Guirke said: “We were extremely disappointed not to have been able to deliver the challenge this year; not only for the 1,000 people from around the world who come to our small part of Ireland to participate but also those that benefit from the funds raised as part of it.
“We understand that all charities have been hit hard by the impact of Covid-19 and with that in mind we knew we still needed to do something to help, hence why we have decided to take the event virtual.”
All monies raised through the 2020 challenge will go towards supporting the work of the Irish Cancer Society.
Irish Cancer Society CEO Averil Power said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on our cancer community. We have worked hard to respond to this new and challenging environment while continuing to provide vital services such as end-of-life Night Nursing at home, and our Support Line for anyone affected by cancer.
Funds raised by events like the JFK 50 Mile Challenge allow us to keep providing these services to cancer patients, so I would encourage anyone who can to get involved.