We wrapped up Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Texas for the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day. From October 27–29, the Pink Bubble gathered in the Lone Star State to walk 60 or 20 miles over the course of three days. Together, 600 walkers and 200 crew members raised a total of $2 million for breast cancer research, community health, patient care and advocacy.
3-Dayers traded their cowboy boots for walking shoes as they took on Downtown Dallas! With the sun shining and temperatures high, walkers began at the Opening Ceremony where they were instructed to hydrate whenever they heard the word “Ya’ll,” prompting ample water consumption. A few incredible speeches were made by Kim Hamstead from Bank of America and participants Trish A., and Stacy T. before Brooke K shared the names of those we lost and Kat C. raised the Promise Flag. Feeling touched by the stories from our incredible speakers, the entire room raised their rally ribbons for survivors and thrivers to lead the way out on the route.
Walkers got to experience an abundance of what the city has to offer as they passed through Dealey Plaza, Turtle Creek Park, Oak Lawn Rainbow Road and the AT&T Discovery District. Outfits ranged from t-shirts and cowboy hats to tutus, and one crew member boasted a shark costume at our Under the Sea themed lunch! Cheering stations were packed and full of vigor, with over fifty Bank of America representatives encouraging walkers at pit stop 3 and Expedia holding a variety of fun signs at pit stop 4. Many representatives even brought their children to experience the spirit of the Pink Bubble and the importance of philanthropy.
We met with two incredible walkers, Cameron and Caroline who walk in honor of their mother Rae, a long-time walker who lost her battle with breast cancer in 2017. They each carry one of her shoes with them along the route. We also spoke with David, a first-time walker who said, “I walk for everyone. I’m here to support everyone who’s struggling right now and I want to keep fighting for the cures to breast cancer.”
With temperatures reaching upwards of 90 degrees, walkers made their way into our hotel camp for some air conditioning before a delicious dinner followed by a celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Susan G. Komen 3-Day! The night commenced with the Bank of America Celebration of Champions, where they awarded our Top Fundraisers, Milestone Award Winner, and Crew Impact Award Winners with donations of up to $500 for their 2024 3-Day fundraising. New this year, Bank of America hosted a raffle where five Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day participants won $250 toward their 2024 fundraising efforts.
Would it be a 2023 3-Day if there wasn’t a little bit of rain? Or a lot of rain, in today’s case! After enjoying a delicious breakfast, walkers hopped aboard buses to Fort Worth for Day 2 filled with liquid sunshine. Our Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day Ultimate Event Experience winner, Riley W., led the way, accompanied by her dear friend and walking partner, Lyndell W. In the qualifying period, Riley raised over $25,000 in a variety of ways, including singing country music. We were even lucky enough to hear her belt out a tune before heading out on the route!
With ponchos on and taped-up sneakers, walkers triumphed through the route, reminding themselves that “we walk because we must.” Our incredible sweep teams were working hard today as they safely escorted walkers to an indoor lunch. Protected from the elements, they enjoyed a delicious meal while your beloved 3-Day hosts, Cati Diamond Stone and Lori Maris, stayed on-theme with today’s weather as they walked around in snorkeling gear. Back on the route, the Fort Worth Water Gardens were extra lively with the additional supply of water from Mother Nature. Walkers also got to experience Sundance Square, the National Cowgirl Museum & Hall of Fame, and the Fairmount-Southside Historic District while out and about. In typical 3-Day fashion, spirits were as high as ever, reminding us that not even rain can pop the Pink Bubble.
When returned to camp, walkers were greeted by the Charlie Brown crew from pit stop 2! Everyone soon dried up and enjoyed some mac ′n cheese before our friends from Mohawk took to the stage with a one-of-a-kind 3-Day rap. We welcomed back our last walker and the Youth Corps then kicked off the Honor Ceremony by sharing their reason for participating. Burt L. and Anna B. shared their “why” before the entire room lit candles to line the way to the remembrance room. Enlightened and inspired, participants made their way to bed to rest up for their final day of the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day!
Walkers returned to Dallas for their third and final day of the 2023 Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day. Though it was chilly, the skies held up and walkers were able to enjoy a mostly dry day! After departing the hotel, walkers were immersed in Texas’ cowboy heritage at the Pioneer Plaza’s Longhorn Cattle Sculptures. They continued their day immersed in Deep Ellum and even witnessed the iconic Giant Eyeball sculpture.
Cheerleaders from the University of Texas at Arlington ruffled their pompoms alongside crew and Youth Corps to support walkers as they completed their 60-mile journey. 600 people crossed the Mohawk Pink Carpet with smiles on their faces to receive their well-deserved victory shirt and medal. They entered the ballroom for the Closing Ceremony, which was adorned with proud loved ones, a photo opportunity from Nature’s Bounty, delicious READY bars, and the beloved Bank of America massage chairs.
Since we don’t celebrate until everyone is home, we welcomed our last walker with cheers and applause that echoed throughout the room. The Closing Ceremony began and we learned that our 600 walkers and 200 crew raised an incredible $2 million to fund breast cancer research and treatment. Together, we raised our shoes to welcome in our survivors and thrivers who make 60 miles seem easy in comparison to their journey.
Did you walk the 2023 Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day? How did you stay motivated with every step along the way?