2015 San Diego 3-Day Wrap-up

As one of the longest-running Susan G. Komen 3-Day® events there is, the San Diego 3-Day has become nearly legendary for being an incredible experience. With abundant sunshine, cool Pacific ocean breezes, and enough photo ops to fill an album, San Diego and its 3-Day event open their arms to participants from every corner of the U.S. (and beyond!). Walkers, crew members and countless supporters come together for three days of belief and hope in our promise to end breast cancer forever.

Day 1 began in the pre-dawn hours of Friday morning with the gathering walkers and crew members shivering against the chilly morning (well, chilly by Southern California standards…). But soon, they were greeted from the stage by Dr. Sheri, along with Chrissy Mathews from Susan G. Komen® and San Diego local events coach Kim, who hosted the always-inspiring Opening Ceremony. IMG_8116 IMG_8060 IMG_8133

Walkers headed west toward the coast and a Star Wars themed pit stop 1 (“May the cure be with you.”) before reaching a cheering station which covered blocks of Del Mar Village.IMG_8302IMG_8332 This was just one of dozens of cheer spots along the route, places where supporters put the 3-Day on their calendars a year in advance to make sure they pull out all the stops.

At around the 5-mile point, walkers reached pit stop 2 before beginning the climb up the well-known (and somewhat feared) Torrey Pines hill.IMG_8420 It’s a tough one, but soon gravity lent a hand and walkers descended through La Jolla, into pit stop 3 at the Salk Institute. A vibrant cheering station at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography gave walkers the push the needed to make it to Kellogg Park for a beach-side lunch stop and some photo ops with local surfers.IMG_8504

After lunch, walkers kept to the coast, passing La Jolla cove, and coming across even more cheering stations and a festive pit stop 4. Many walkers were treated to smooches from the “Kissing Dog” and more scenic views (plus a few more hills…) through La Jolla, before the last waterfront stretch into Crown Point Shores, home of the 3-Day camp.

Dr. Sheri and Chrissy were back on stage to host the Friday night camp show. IMG_8657We heard a moving speech from Miguel Perez from Susan G. Komen headquarters, and another touching message from Amy, a mom of three and a young breast cancer survivor. Recognition was given to San Diego’s top training walk leader, top fundraisers, and Milestone Award winner.

With bright sunshine and clear skies, walkers set out along the water from camp on Day 2.IMG_8942 They were met almost immediately by San Diego Youth Corps Alumni at one of many cheering stations along the route. Pit stop 1 and a morning cheer station got walkers pumped up, which was good because soon they were gaining elevation again, this time into the hilly Sunset Cliffs neighborhood.IMG_9141 The climb was worth it, as panoramic views of the Pacific (as well as the New Balance cheerleaders) greeted the walkers at pit stop 2, and the views continued for miles back down into Ocean Beach and pit stop 3.IMG_9307IMG_9036 IMG_9227IMG_9294

Another public cheering station came next, then lunch at Bonita Cove Park. Many walkers’ families and friends joined them, and walkers leaving the park were given fresh gerbera daisies from a local grower.IMG_9325 The route continued along the boardwalk, with many walkers stopping for the endless photo ops, including a group of furry and friendly therapy dogs. Walkers arriving at pit stop 4 at Fanuel Park got the usual snacks and hydration, but got an extra special treat of fresh-baked cookies from some loyal walkers stalkers. The final stretch of Day 2 brought walkers back along Bayside Walk, which was lined with dozens of supporters, and back into camp.IMG_9468 IMG_9436

The Saturday night camp show featured fun games, a moving speech from co-survivor Melissa, and the San Diego Youth Corps. There was also a tear-jerking talk from well-known 3-Dayer John Shinar, who surprised the whole dining tent by proposing to his special lady on stage.IMG_9555

Walkers set out on Sunday morning for yet another beautiful day in San Diego, starting with the lovely DeAnza Cove as the backdrop for pit stop 1.IMG_0133 It was a string of supporters and cheering stations around every corner, including the MadCaps mother/daughter group before pit stop 2 and the NCL and DHL cheerers near the bottom of the Juan St. hill in Old Town.IMG_0230 IMG_0272 That climb was a doozy, but after reaching the top, walkers enjoyed a pass through a nicely shaded residential neighborhood before arriving at lunch at Mission Hills Park.IMG_0419

The second half of Day 3’s route was new and different, taking walkers through more lovely neighborhoods and back down to the sea and Harbor Drive. Pit stop 3 was a new location at Waterfront Park, complete with fountains and historic ships in the background.IMG_0453 Another couple of miles along the water and walkers crossed into the new Participant Finish Area at Embarcadero Park South.IMG_0586

With the sun setting to the west, walkers and crew members processed into the Closing Ceremony arena outside Petco Park, where hundreds of supporters lined the way. Dr. Sheri, Chrissy and Kim, our hosts from the Opening Ceremony and camp shows, were once again there to thank San Diego’s 2,200 walkers, 350 crew members, countless supporters, and event sponsors, and to celebrate the incredible accomplishment that the San Diego 3-Day achieved: raising $5.9 million.IMG_0659 IMG_0861 IMG_0811

And so, the 2015 3-Day season has come to an emotional close, but as we raised the final flag one last time over San Diego, we stood united with our 3-Day family in Michigan, Twin Cities, Seattle, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Dallas/Fort Worth, and every spot in between, bound by our shared promise: that we will never give up until we have defeated breast cancer forever. Thank you, 3-Day walkers and crew!

Catching Up With the San Diego 3-Day Coaches

Before last year’s Susan G. Komen 3-Day® series, we introduced the local coaches from each Komen 3-Day. These are the staff members who support the walkers and crew members all year round, answering phone calls and emails, hosting community events, assigning crew captains and juggling dozens of other tasks to make sure that the 3-Day® participants make it to their events excited and well prepared.

Since we gave you the coaches’ full profiles last year, we’ll delight you with just a fun update before each event this year. Today, we catch up with the San Diego 3-Day coaches (you can read last year’s “Meet the San Diego Coaches” here)!

susan g komen 3-Day breast cancer 60 miles walk blog san diego coaches

Nanette, Kim, Staci

What was your favorite memory from the 2014 San Diego 3-Day?

Staci (San Diego Participant Coach) – My favorite part is always reconnecting with my 3-Day family and meeting people for the first time that I have been emailing and talking on the phone with throughout the season.susan g komen 3-Day breast cancer 60 miles walk blog san diego coaches

Kim (San Diego Local Events Coach) – The Closing Ceremony. Watching all the love and celebration of completing the journey and the determination to never give up.susan g komen 3-Day breast cancer 60 miles walk blog san diego coaches

Nanette (San Diego Crew & Volunteer Coordinator) – My favorite memory from 2014 was seeing all of the hard work the crew has put into this event and making it their own over the year. They were having fun, they accomplished many great things and many friends were made. It made my heart swell.susan g komen 3-Day breast cancer 60 miles walk blog san diego coaches

Fun facts about the San Diego 3-Day Coaches – Can you guess which fun fact is true about which coach? (There are 3 facts about each coach; answers will be at the end of the San Diego 3-Day event wrap-up at the end of the week!)

  1. I’ve won a car.
  2. I’m home-body.
  3. I am an avid hiker.
  4. I am a pretty darn good poker player.
  5. I love decorating, gardening and “pinning.”
  6. My dream job is to perform on Broadway.
  7. My all-time favorite getaway is to a National Park.
  8. Up until a few years ago, I had 2 goats, 1 pig, 16 chickens, 2 roosters, 2 dogs and 2 cats.
  9. I took apart my malfunctioning washer and fixed it by myself. Who needs a handyWOMAN?


Looking for the answers from the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day Coaches’ Fun Facts post? Here they are!


1) Val; 2) Liz; 3) Gayla; 4) Val; 5) Gayla; 6) Liz; 7) Gayla; 8) Val; 9) Liz

Congratulations to the 2015 Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day Award Winners

It was our privilege to celebrate some of our remarkable Susan G. Komen 3-Day® participants with special awards at the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day.

Top Fundraisers

The top crew fundraiser in Dallas/Fort Worth was Kathleen Furman, who raised $4,490. She’s crafty with her fundraisers, designing and making her own buttons, stickers and temporary tattoos. Kathleen has been a part of the Komen 3-Day for ten years, this year’s Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day being her fifteenth event. As a crew member this year, she brought her lifetime fundraising grand total to $47,175.

The top fundraising team in Dallas/Fort Worth was Pink Soles in Motion. As the largest team on the event with 77 members led by captain Catrina Gibson, they raised $134, 468. During their ten years as a team, this group has raised an incredible $1,289,616! Wow!

Pink Soles

The top individual fundraiser in Dallas/Fort Worth was Allison Lewis of the Jabber-Walkies team, who raised $21,415 on her own. She’s been friends with two of the women on her team since kindergarten, which makes sense since the team got their distinct name thanks to a grade school P.E. coach who called Allison “Jabberwocky” in the 3rd grade. In two years and two 3-Day events, Allison has raised a total of $37,540.

jabber walkies

Thank you and kudos to our top fundraiser and to the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day community as a whole, who together raised $2.8 million in donations.

Milestone Award

The Milestone Award is given on each 3-Day event to one participant who has an extraordinary history of involvement with the 3-Day. This year, The Milestone Award for Dallas/Fort Worth was presented to Liz Goldman.

Liz first took part in the 3-Day 12 years ago, and this year’s Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day marks her 11th event. Liz’s commitment to the 3-Day is so strong that when Hurricane Sandy hit New York in 2012 and she was not able to fly out to walk in Dallas, she rearranged everything (flights, family, clean-up efforts at home, etc.) and transferred to the Arizona 3-Day just one week later! In her history with the 3-Day, Liz has raised over $144,622 (she also raised the second highest amount of donations as an individual for the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day this year).

award winner

Outside of the 3-Day, Liz uses her skills as a chef and her love of food volunteering at a local soup kitchen. Not only is she altruistic, but she’s downright brave; on a recent trip to Tuscon for a girls’ weekend at the spa, she challenged herself to walk a tightrope! Liz’s husband, a 3-Day crew member, offered more insight into what an outstanding woman Liz is, saying “Liz is special, for she truly will do anything to help anyone, and in a wonderful way. The reality is that Liz has an unending desire to help people, and the strength and wisdom to do so.  This runs through both major life events and day-to-day life.  This altruism manifests itself for the family and close friends. But it doesn’t end there.  She also wants to help many who she doesn’t even know. ”

Thank you, Liz, for your years of enthusiasm and dedication to the 3-Day. It’s our pleasure to honor you.

Local Impact Award

The Local Impact Award is a new award for 2015, and is being presented to a participant in each 3-Day city who has been instrumental in strengthening the 3-Day in their community throughout the year. Local Impact Award honorees are participants who go above and beyond with things like leading training walks, attending local events, supporting the local 3-Day staff year-round at meet-ups and workshops, and in general, making a difference in their 3-Day community by building lasting relationships and showing commitment to the 3-Day in all they do.

We were pleased to honor walker Ralph Morriss with The Local Impact Award at the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day. Over the course of his four years and four 3-Day events, he’s raised a total of $23,327. A fun fact about Ralph: he was voted “Class Favorite” at Lewisville HS in 1954. His friend, Shelley G., shared some of the qualities about Ralph that made him just as lovable then as he is now, “My friend Ralph is the most caring, loving, thoughtful, wonderful person you’ll ever know. He would give you the shirt off his back or definitely some veggies from his garden.” Speaking of veggies, Ralph is an avid gardener who owns a veggie stand on Morriss Road in Flower Mound, so be sure to stop by and try some of his produce! He’ll make sure you know all about the 3-Day while you’re there.

award winner

Besides gardening, Ralph enjoys walking and fundraises every day, which is pretty amazing considering all of the time and energy that takes. His friend Tracey M. had some wonderful things to say about this extraordinary man, “I call Ralph Morriss the Energizer Bunny. There is just no stopping him. Ralph tirelessly works year round training and raising funds for the support of Susan G. Komen® and the 3-Day.  There are plenty of causes Ralph could put his efforts toward, including diabetes, as Ralph was diagnosed in 2009 with Type 1 Diabetes. Yet he chooses to walk with us, for us! Ralph at 80 years of age is so full of life and love. He is so very thoughtful and selfless. I have to say I have never seen my friend with a frown on his face….except maybe when he fears the donations are slowing! As I fight my personal fight, rarely a day goes by without my receiving a quick text from Ralph to just say “Hello, how ya feeling” and maybe a few words of encouragement or inspiration. When I text him back a “Hello, what’s up my buddy?” He says, “Just the 3 W’s. Working, Walking and Wishing”. I then ask, “What are you wishing for?” He says, “A cure for cancer!” Well, I have a wish as well, I wish for everyone fighting this fight to have someone as special and uplifting in their life. Although I am certain Ralph Morriss is one of a kind! Komen and so many of us are lucky to have him on our side!”

Congratulations and thank you to Ralph for his phenomenal commitment to a world free of breast cancer. And, of course, thank you to the entire Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day family for another unbelievable year!