Susan G. Komen 2017 Twin Cities 3-Day Wrap Up

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On Friday morning of our Twin Cities 3-Day, we began our 60-mile journey at the Southdale Mall in Edina. This historic spot was actually the location of the original Mall of America, and it was the perfect place to welcome both local and out-of-town walkers to the 3-Day.

The day started with perfect walking temperatures as our 3-Dayers arrived at the Disco Boobie Diner at Pit Stop 1. Already with 2.8 miles behind them, the walkers danced and boogied with their first taste of grahamwiches and 3-Day crew love.

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Pit Stop 2, at mile 6.8, was right along the water at Utley Park. Fittingly, the theme for the pit stop was Lake Minitata, and walkers could stop to “fish” for bras, or pose with floaties along the crew-created dock.

Lunch took place at Loring Park after 11.7 miles on the day, before our walkers made their way through more beautiful views at Father Hennepin Bluffs and B.F. Nelson Parks. The day ended on the University of Minnesota campus, before walkers were bussed to our picturesque camp at Harvest Park.

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Camp was a celebratory affair on Friday night as walkers relaxed in the Bank of America massage chairs, picked up their mail and sweet treats from home, and cheered on the top fundraisers (team, individual and crew) and award winners for the Twin Cities. Then, it was off to their pretty pink tents for a good night’s rest.

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A throwback photo from Jody’s Couch in year’s past

Day Two started off sunny and warm, and our walkers made great time coming into Pit One at Thunder Bay Park for a quick 3.2 miles. From there, they walked by the iconic Jody’s Couch, and saw love and support from the local community.

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From there, the walkers enjoyed time in Spooner, Acorn and Central Parks as they walked the next 8 miles (for a total of 11.2) to arrive at lunch! This lunch was hopping thanks to a fiesta theme, complete with salsa music, maracas, and lots of space to spread out and relax on the Mohawk Flooring pink mats. Walkers ate, relaxed, and even practiced yoga before heading back out on the route.

Just after lunch, there was an extra festive community cheering section led by the Boobettes, who danced and posed alongside walkers.

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Grab & Go B at mile 14.2 was coffee and barista themed, which gave walkers that extra “java boost” to carry them through Vadnais Park and onto to the Treasure Ye Chest pirates at Pit 4. From there, they only had a few miles left before arriving back at camp, having completed 22.6 miles on Saturday!

Saturday night was Friends & Family night at camp, so walkers got to spend some time with their loved ones. They played putt-putt golf and got chair massages at the Bank of America tent, listened to local musicians as well as speeches by Susan G. Komen researchers, and even had a dance party! They also met our amazing Twin Cities Youth Corps Crew, who received a standing ovation from walkers after providing lots of support and cheers all weekend long.

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Day 3 promised to be the sunniest and warmest of the weekend, so our walkers got right to work first thing in the morning. They reached Pit Stop 1 at Casey Lake Park in record time, and had already checked 3.5 miles off their list for the day!

From there, they passed Maplewood Middle School at mile 5.8 before breezing into lunch at the Conway Recreation Center. There was plenty of room to stretch out and relax in the shade, as well as a playground and even a fountain play area at lunch, making it a fun stop for walkers, as well as some of the community who came out to cheer them on. There was plenty to cheer for, as there were only 7 miles left to go before reaching the finish line!

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After lunch, walkers made their way through Indian Mounds Park, which provided plenty of beautiful views and awesome photo opportunities. Pit Stop 3 at Mile 14.3 especially had gorgeous views of St. Paul spread out below. After that, it was all down hill to Closing Ceremony at Harriet Island.

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It was a victorious final few miles for our walkers as they reached the finish area, and that feeling of accomplishment carried on through Closing Ceremony. Our 400 walkers and 175 crew members in the Twin Cities raised $1.1 million.

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However, their journey does not end here, and is never truly done, as was evidenced in our closing ceremony. We are all still working, and walking, towards Susan G. Komen’s Bold Goal to reduce the nation’s 40,000 breast cancer deaths by 50 percent by 2026.

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As we hugged and celebrated and danced in the sun, one message rang loud and clear; that though our feet may ache, our spirit and dedication will live forever; through aches, and pain, and blisters. WE WILL NEVER GIVE UP. Thank you, Twin Cities. We are so very proud of each and every one of you, and cannot thank you enough for each of the 60 miles you walked this past weekend.

If you’re ready to be a part of this incredible journey again in 2018, sign up now at The3Day.org/Register.

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Congratulations to the 2017 Twin Cities 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner, Sue Norling

For the 2017 Susan G. Komen 3-Day® season, we’re honored to be featuring the Local Impact Award. This award is being given to participants who have been instrumental in strengthening the 3-Day® community throughout the year. Local Impact Award honorees have gone above and beyond in their efforts leading training walks, attending 3-Day community events. They have also supported the 3-Day staff year-round at meet-ups and workshops, and in general, been making a difference by building lasting relationships and showing commitment to the 3-Day in all they do.

Please join us in congratulating the 2017 Twin Cities 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner, Sue Norling.

Sue has walked in 9 3-Days and crewed in 6 other 3-Day events, all the while fundraising a total of $24,324.53! All those that know her love and support Susan, but her sister Jennifer Groschen says Sue is especially deserving of this honor because she “lives and breathes [the 3-Day] on a second by second basis.” Jennifer, who is also a 3-Day walker, didn’t stop there when praising her sister! “Sunshine or rain, Sue will never complain. Susan has walked and volunteered in over 15 events! This is incredible! It’s HER life!  Her positive attitude and funny personality are what makes her so much fun to be around! She is quick witted, cracks jokes that invite others to chime into the conversations, makes friends everywhere she goes, and is always giving back. She has one of the most outgoing personalities, so that even when you want to give up – she will cheer you on to keep going! She will make you laugh when you want to cry. She will pick you up when you’re feeling down or if need a lift someplace she’ll be there (surprisingly not in a pink car – yet…)

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Through blisters and tears, fundraising is no fear. Before most people’s blisters, tired/sore feet and aching muscles have even had a chance to think about healing or recovery, Sue has ALREADY signed up for and is fundraising for the next event. I believe several times she’s been signed up to volunteer at one (Twin Cities) and walk another (San Diego) in the same year. “Whether she is assisting in keeping a sugar boost going amongst up her co-workers by selling candy bars at her desk, selling “boobie pins” for awareness, talking to potential 3-Day walkers or hosting a training walk, Sue is constantly in “Fundraising Participant mode.” She is often spotted walking in our community with her pink (of course) stripped Zubas – FULL 3-Day gear on (as if already walking the 3-Day) parading down the streets! Sue is a glorious, inspirational sight to see and completely enthusiastic about it while waving to people as they pass – all the while raising awareness!”

After all that praise, we had to hear from Sue herself! When we asked her these questions, she didn’t know she would soon be selected as our winner!

What was your inspiration to do your first 3-Day?

 My Mom, Eunice. She is now a 10-year warrior! She is even helping as a day volunteer on Saturday. 78 and still out there and active!

What is the secret to your 3-Day fundraising success?

Commit to walking early, and ask everyone. I have people that I know I can count on every year. I make sure to send an email right away and follow up with a hand written “snail mail” delivered thank you, and a hand written follow up after the season is over. And I let them know that I am walking again and where, for the following year so they have been “warned.”

What is your best advice to anyone walking the 3-Day?

Train, hydrate, and enjoy the event. Talk to a random walker! BAM, NEW FRIEND.

What’s a fun fact about you?

My kids don’t think I am funny, but trust me I am. 🙂

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned on the 3-Day?

Enjoy your “pink bubble” while on event. You will make friends from everywhere. You may only see them at the 3-Day on event, but the bond you make will last a lifetime.

On behalf of all of us walking, crewing, and supporting the Susan G. Komen 3-Day, thank you Sue. We can’t wait to see all your pink 3-Day spirit on future events!

Congratulations to the 2017 Twin Cities 3-Day Milestone Award Winner, Alyssa Smith

Please join us in congratulating our 2017 Twin Cities Milestone Award Winner; Alyssa Smith. The Susan G. Komen 3-Day® Milestone Award is given at each event to a walker or crew member who has an outstanding history of participation in the Komen 3-Day. At the Twin Cities 3-Day camp show, we presented Alyssa with this special honor.

Since her first walk 11 years ago, Alyssa has taken on the 3-Day 20 times, and will be walking in San Diego as well as the Twin Cities this year. All told, she has raised $57,706.00 for the 3-Day! Her positivity and dedication are well-known on the routes.

To get to know Alyssa better, we asked the 3-Day community for stories about her, and the response was glowing!

“Alyssa is one to always give back and pay it forward. She is an incredible listener and one that always makes a difference. Her stubbornness and gleam for traditions are what help to create her success in everything she puts her mind to. Alyssa is one to be in the moment, whether it’s when she playing her drums in her living room or listening to a friend and sharing her own stories. Alyssa believes that despite pain and sadness, hope and inspiration are incredibly strong forces. This is why she has earned this year’s 2017 Milestone Award!”

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Now let’s hear about the 3-Day and Alyssa’s story in her own words. When we asked her these questions, she didn’t know she would soon be selected as our winner!

What was your inspiration to do your first 3-Day?

My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004. I came across an advertisement for the 3-Day a year later, while I was researching her medication. The idea was stuck in my head from that moment on, and I finally clicked the “submit” button in 2007 (at about 1:00am, before I could talk myself out of it!).

Someone else made it possible for my mom to still be here today (13-year survivor!), and I wanted to give back and pay that forward.

What has brought you back to the 3-Day year after year?

First, because I can’t stop. I carry the names that donors give to me – of people fighting, and of those we have lost.  Every year at the walks, I listen and hear so many more names to keep walking for. I don’t walk just in honor of my mom — I also walk in honor of all of them.

Second, the community. As soon as I arrived at that first opening ceremony, I knew I had found “my place.” This community is so full of love and inspiration, and I am continually in awe of the people I meet. I come back for those genuine interactions – to hear stories, to laugh and cry, share hugs, and to try to make a difference.

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What is your best advice to anyone walking the 3-Day?

Apply “Body Glide” often — even if you don’t think you need to! STRETCH. And, most importantly, be in the moment and share stories with those around you.

What are the most important lessons you’ve learned on the 3-Day?

On a personal level: That I can push through just about anything I set out to do.

On a larger scale: That despite pain and sadness, hope and inspiration are incredibly strong forces.

On behalf of all of us walking, crewing, and supporting the Susan G. Komen 3-Day, thank you.