3-Day Fundraising Events are the Thing to Do!

Susan G. Komen 3-Day® participants reach their fundraising goals in dozens of different ways, but some of the most successful Komen 3-Day fundraisers are those folks who employ several different strategies to raise money. In general, it’s a good idea to mix up your fundraising approaches, and one of the most effective methods you can incorporate is holding a fundraising event.

Event = Just About Anything!
Think of a 3-Day® fundraising event as being any organized effort to get people together and collect donations. These events range from simple (a wine and cheese night in your home or a casual backyard “Boob-B-Q”), to more elaborate (a Bowl-a-thon or live music show), to downright extravagant (a fashion show or benefit play). The more work you put in to organizing a fundraising event, the more money you’re likely to get out of it, but any size event can be tremendously successful if you follow a few basic guidelines.

susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk fundraiser fundraising beauty pageant

Philadelphia team Breastasaurus Rex has held an adorable and very successful “Pretty in Pink” beauty pageant fundraiser for several years                     

Don’t Apologize for Fundraising 
When you publicize your event and invite friends, family members, co-workers and neighbors, make it very clear that your intent is to raise money. Don’t hide it and don’t apologize for it. Put the expectation in your guests’ minds that they will be giving to your fundraising efforts, and then…

Make it Worth Their While
As charitable as your friends and family members may be, and as much as they want to support you out of the goodness of their hearts, the truth is, some will probably be more inclined to give (or to give more) if they get a little something back. Holding a fundraising event accomplishes both goals: it gets donations for you and it gives your donors a fun, memorable experience. And it’s okay if you attract folks who are more excited about the party than the cause—whatever gets them in the door! The more elaborate or unusual the event it, the more that “can’t miss” factor increases. Yes, big and bold events will take more work on your part, but we’ve known such events to yield $10,000 to 20,000 in a single night.


Get Stuff, Give Stuff

The less you have to spend out of pocket on venue, food or beverages, the more you’ll be able to return to your fundraising efforts. Go around to local businesses, call in favors and get stuff donated for your fundraiser. Many vendors will offer discounted or free goods and services in exchange for free advertising at your event, so don’t be afraid to ask.You can even sweeten the deal by agreeing to put their name/logo on a shirt you wear on the 3-Day itself. The same goes for small donated items that you can give as party favors or bigger donations that you can raffle or auction off at your event. If your guests have the chance to walk away with some fun swag, they’ll be more likely to open their wallets generously.

Team Up!
If you are part of a 3-Day team, fundraising events are a great way for the whole team to get involved. When you can divide up the to-do’s of organizing and executing a fabulous party, it makes the job easier for everyone (one person secures a venue, another arranges entertainment, a few others are tasked with getting raffle prizes donates…). And think about it: if you have 50 people you would invite to a fundraiser, that’s 50 possible donors. But if you and 4 teammates each invite 50 people, suddenly you have 250 potential donors (and a lot more excitement at your event!).

These are just a few tasty tidbits to get your wheels turning about a fundraising event. You can find out lots more by clicking here, or you can call the coaches at 800-996-3DAY.

A 3-Day Insider’s Take on Stretching

I’m here to talk a little bit about stretching on the Susan G. Komen 3-Day®, but first things first: I am not a doctor, a physical therapist or an athletic trainer. There are important health benefits related to stretching, which you should discuss with your practitioner before taking on the Komen 3-Day. But for today, one walker to another, I’d like to offer my take on the importance and benefits of stretching on the 3-Day®.

Susan G. Komen 3-Day breast cancer walk stretching

It’s Simple

Atlanta 3-Day Day 1

The first benefit is the simplest: when your muscles are aching and working to the max, stretching feels good. Why wouldn’t you want to do something that makes you feel better?

This Isn’t a Race, People!Susan G. Komen 3-Day breast cancer walk stretch

I’ve never run a marathon, but I know that for most long distance runners, the objective is to finish with a good time, without stopping. For athletes striving toward that goal, stretching is something they will focus on before and after their event, but probably not during. The 3-Day® is different. It’s not a race, no one is being timed, and not only is it okay to stop in the middle, the route is designed in a way that encourages stopping. Those pit stops are there for a reason—well, lots of reasons—and one of them is stretching.

Savor the Stops

Komen_3Day_breast_cancer_blog_stretching_walking_team

Stretch break and photo op. Boom. Two birds.

Taking good, thorough stretches at pit stops and the lunch stop is a no-brainer. But you can work stretching in throughout your walk, even if you’re not at an official route stop. For starters, you can stop any old time you want, as long as it’s done safely, and in a way that doesn’t inconvenience or endanger other walkers. Stoplights are awesome for this. You can even stretch while you walk, by changing up the length of your stride (think long, lunging steps), putting some emphasized swagger in your hips, or stretching your arms, shoulders and neck as your feet and legs do their thing.

Seriously. Stretch Because You CANAtlanta 3-Day Day 2

I’m a fast walker. It’s just the pace I’m comfortable with, and I like to crank through the miles quickly. I’ll be honest: I have been guilty of neglecting those stretching breaks in favor of keeping my pace up. But trust me when I say that I pay the price for skipping the stretches. The 3-Day’s recommendation is that you stretch at least 5 minutes for every hour you walk. Take the time to do that, even if you don’t feel sore while you’re walking. Your body will thank you for it in the morning.

Be Kind to Your Hard-Working BodySusan G. Komen 3-Day breast cancer walk stretch

Walking 20 miles a day is something that most Americans in 2014 are not accustomed to doing. Hopefully, by the time you get to the 3-Day, you’ve trained well to build up your body’s stamina and strength, but regardless of how much training you’ve done, 60 miles in three days will take a toll on you. Stretching is a simple measure you can take to reduce the strain and pain of such a long stroll, and speed your recovery when the walk is over.

 

3-Day walkers, you can find an extensive stretching guide on page 11 of your Training Handbook, found in your Participant Center. What are your favorite go-to stretches? Tell us in comments!

 

 

PLEASE NOTE: THE HEALTH, SAFETY AND TRAINING INFORMATION PROVIDED TO YOU IN CONNECTION WITH YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THE SUSAN G. KOMEN 3-DAY IS NOT INTENDED TO REPLACE OR BE CONSTRUED AS MEDICAL ADVICE AND ANY SUCH INFORMATION IS NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR SEEKING MEDICAL ADVICE OR TREATMENT FROM YOUR MEDICAL PROVIDER. BEFORE STARTING ANY EXERCISE PROGRAM OR FOLLOWING ANY RECOMMENDATIONS, ADVICE OR OTHER INSTRUCTIONS REGARDING TRAINING FOR THE KOMEN 3-DAY OR ANY ATHLETIC EVENT, YOU SHOULD FIRST CONSULT A PHYSICIAN AND HAVE A PHYSICAL EXAMINATION.

How the 3-Day Stays Green in a Pink World

All of us here at the Susan G. Komen 3-Day® work hard to create a safe yet memorable experience for our participants, from the time you register until after you take your victory walk into the Closing Ceremony. Putting on an event for thousands of participants takes a lot of preparation, and the Komen 3-Day keeps environmental consciousness strongly in mind, not just on Earth Day, but every day when planning and executing its events.

SusanGKomen3Day_EarthDay

Here are some things the 3-Day® does to stay green:

Before the Event

  • A few years ago, we began posting the 3-Day walker and crew handbooks online to save paper. Only walkers who are completely new to the 3-Day get a mailed set. Today, except for a single welcome envelope sent when you register, all of your 3-Day resources are provided electronically.
  • This year, we stopped mailing out printed informational brochures, and instead provide details about the 3-Day in emails and on our website.

On the Event

  • Event staff, crew and volunteers are meticulous about trash pick-up at all event locations (our expectation is to leave our event locations cleaner than we found them).
  • Many of our event materials, such as route signs, are reused from year to year.
  • We have separate receptacles for trash and recycled materials at all route stops and in camp, and most camp locations also have bins for composting.
  • Participants bring their own water bottles to the event, which allows us to use gallon jugs of water rather than thousands of single plastic bottles.
  • We mix sports drink in 5 gallon jugs for participants to fill their water bottles as well, which also cuts out single-bottle waste.
  • The event staff and volunteers use GPS units for the event vehicles, which cuts back on waste from printed maps.

After the Event

  • After the Closing Ceremony, participants can donate their used shoes, which we then send to recycling centers.
  • All of our leftover water and snacks from the events are donated to local charity organizations.
  • All of the tarps, air mattresses, sleeping bags, etc. that discarded by participants after the event are donated to local charity organizations as well.

 

3-Day participants make the world a better place by raising money and walking, and we’re happy to do our small part to leave that world a better place too. What do you do to stay green on your 3-Day journey?