Today, December 5th, all of Thailand is celebrating their king, Bhumibol Adulyadej’s birthday! He is the longest reigning king in the world and is dearly loved by his people. Him and his reigning Queen are responsible for much positive change in Thailand. He is considered the Father of the Thai nation, a symbol of unity, social harmony, and a strong familial society; the day is also celebrated as Father’s Day because of him. While celebrations are crazy today, the main festivity takes place next week…
Since I arrived in Thailand, giant posters of the King and the words BIKE FOR DAD have decorated buildings, highways, and markets. Until recently, I had no idea what it meant. But in celebration of the Kings birthday, Thai’s, across the world, will be cycling 29 km on December 11th. The main event is held in Bangkok featuring 100,000 cyclists, but there are 66 other global cities participating, with over 600,000 people registered. And you, too, can be a part! For more information and to find your nearest city, visit bikefordad2015.com! I’ll be in Laos, but will make sure to find a bike to hop on.
And speaking of dads and cycling, now would be the perfect time to announce that my father will be cycling with the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults‘ KEY TO KEYS Ride 2016. It’s an 8 day cycling trip in April from Key Highway in Baltimore, Maryland to Key West, Florida! He’s joined a team of about 15, and must raise $4,500 to benefit the Ulman Cancer Fund and young adults faced with cancer. It’s the same great organization that runs 4K FOR CANCER, the cross-country bicycle trip I did in the summer of 2014. And he’s riding in memory of his wife, my mother, who passed away in 2009 after bravely fighting brain cancer for 5 years.
My dad is amazing. He’s been a huge supporter of me chasing my dreams, even if that means cycling to the other side of the country or flying to the other side of the world. He’s given me so much in love and opportunity and I want to make sure he has the same. If you want to support my father as he bikes 1,300 miles down the east coast, and young adults fighting cancer, donate to Peter Grant.
Much love to all dads and fatherly figures out there, both past and present. It’s nice to have someone to look up to.