We returned to New England with a splash this past weekend and could not have asked for a better three days on the East Coast! From Fenway to Boston Commons to the Freedom Trail and beyond, this weekend was one for the books.
Our journey began on Friday morning at our host hotel, the Revere Hotel Boston Common, with a special Opening Ceremony complete with stories from local walkers. Our survivors, and those living with breast cancer, were also honored before they led us out of the hotel and into the morning sunshine.
Our walk began through Boston Common and the historic Beacon Hill neighborhood, which gave walkers a real taste of the history of the city’s architecture and environment. Everyone loved both the natural calm of the Common as well as the cobblestones and homes in Beacon Hill. From there, we entered Cambridge, passing through Riverbend and North Point parks before settling in for lunch.
The weather stayed cool for our entire first day, giving walkers great weather to make quick work of a 20-mile day! After lunch, they passed the USS Constitution (or Old Ironsides to the locals) and the Bunker Hill Monument, both of which were excellent photo opportunities as well as being peeks into the history of the city.
Before being welcomed back to our hotel camp by our amazing crew team, walkers passed L Street Tavern, which many recognized from the movie Good Will Hunting. It was the perfect ending to a wonderful Day One! 3-Day BINGO, and the much-loved Bank of America massage chairs, awaited walkers and Crew at Friday’s camp. After that, it was straight to sleep in the comfy hotel beds to be well-rested for Day Two.
Saturday dawned with bright and beautiful fall weather, perfect for another day of walking! The morning was also jam packed with historical sites, including Trinity Church, Old South Church and the Boston Public Library…all in the first mile of walking! From there, we followed the Boston Marathon route in reverse, and walkers had fun celebrating “crossing the finish line” a little early in the weekend.
From there, we walked through Brookline and Brighton before arriving at our halfway celebration at lunch. Walkers lounged on the Mohawk pink mats before jumping up to dance in our celebration flash mob with Mark as Bon Jovi blared across our lunch site.
The second half of the day began with wide smiles leftover from lunch. We headed back into Boston proper, getting more city views before taking the Commonwealth Mall path back to our hotel. The shady tree-lined avenue gave relaxing shade and a respite from the hustle and bustle of downtown.
When our last walker arrived back at camp, we began our emotional Honor Ceremony and saluted those who inspire and motivate us to commit three days, year after year. We walk for them, and this ceremony celebrated that commitment. Tears were shed, hugs were shared, and we went to bed feeling fulfilled and ready to take on Day Three.
Sunday was our sunniest and warmest day yet for the weekend! The day began with a walk-through the Boston Public Garden and a stop by Cheers, the bar that inspired the titular beloved TV show. It wasn’t open yet, but walkers loved stopping for a photo!
They also posed outside Fenway Park, and declared their allegiance to home teams from across the country. We missed the game that day, but in honor of New England, 3-Dayers cheered on the Red Sox in spirit.
After Fenway, we walked through Brookline and Jamaica Plain before making our way back into the Boston city limits. We passed under the Chinatown Gate and over the Charles River, even passing the site of the Boston Tea Party. Just one more historical landmark in a weekend full of them!
Our walk ended at the Lawn on D, with lots of space for friends and family to come celebrate this amazing accomplishment. Our last walkers began our Closing Ceremony with excitement, which continued as our Crew entered the ceremony area. Then, shoes were raised to honor the strength of our survivor community, and for those living with breast cancer. They are the reason we will continue to walk, and to fundraise, for a world without breast cancer.
And fundraise we did! The 1,100 walkers and 200 crew members of the New England 3-Day raised an amazing $2.9 million in the fight against breast cancer. That’s an accomplishment worth celebrating! As we danced and soaked in the moment, many walkers already registered to return to the New England 3-Day in 2020. They know that the work is not done. And though our weekend has ended, we will not stop here. We will never quit.