2022 San Diego 3-Day Recap 

Our 2022 Susan G. Komen 3-Day series is officially in the books! We wrapped up the season with our final event in San Diego this past weekend, and it was truly a weekend we won’t forget. With 1,700 walkers and 325 crew members, $5.3 million was raised in the fight against breast cancer.  

Day 1 

The Pink Bubble was awake before the sun Friday morning, and gathered at the Del Mar Fairgrounds for our Opening Ceremony. Though quite chilly, there was no lack of excitement as we looked forward to the next three days and 60 miles we’d have together for the last 3-Day in our 2022 series. As emcee Kimberly Reinika and host Cati Diamond Stone kicked things off with some stretching, dancing and our Opening Ceremony, we were soon on our way to start the 60-mile journey. 

The first leg of the route was as special as ever, wandering past Del Mar’s Dog Beach into Del Mar Village, home to some of the best community support we have on the 3-Day. The Torrey Pines High School cheerleaders welcomed us into the heart of Del Mar shortly after our first pit stop of the day. 

Departing Del Mar, we headed towards the infamous Torrey Pines Hill. Though notoriously tough, walkers fueled up at the bottom at pit stop 2 and couldn’t help but smile as they were greeted with immense support and cheering at the top. Continuing on, walkers passed UCSD as they ventured into La Jolla and then towards Kellogg Park for lunch.  

After lunch, walkers further toured La Jolla before heading south into the quaint town of Bird Rock and into Pacific Beach, where our final pit stop and grab & go stations were located. We enjoyed the neighborhood streets of Pacific Beach before hitting Fanuel Park, the entrance point to Mission Bay where we walk along the boardwalk to reach camp at Crown Point Park.  

Walkers crossed the Mohawk Flooring Pink Carpet into camp and 3-Day Main Street where many of our sponsors set up tents to offer various services to our participants. Natura Bissé offered refreshing mists and samples, Bank of America provided massage chairs, and Amgen hosted a lounge with a make-your-own trail mix station and spin-the-wheel prizes aimed at providing knowledge about our bone health. 

We finished up our first day with our Bank of America Celebration of Champions, highlighting all our top fundraisers from individuals, rookies, crew members, youth corps and of course, teams! Stay tuned to the 3-Day blog for our posts about these amazing fundraisers, as well as our Crew Impact and Milestone Award Winners. 

Day 2 

On Day 2, walkers experienced some of San Diego’s great beach towns. After breakfast at camp, we crossed one of Mission Bay’s bridges into Ocean Beach for our  first pit stop of the day. As we ventured further into Ocean Beach’s neighborhoods, we encountered our Day 2 hill. Once reaching the top, walkers were rewarded with amazing ocean views and a cheering station comprised of local supporters and the Heartland Fire Department, who passed out water bottles and snacks to keep us going. 

We rounded our way through Point Loma towards pit stop 2 at Sunset View Elementary, a staple pit stop of the San Diego 3-Day with tons of space and great views. Perhaps even more famed than this great location is the next photo-op located at the bottom of the hill it sits on: Sunset Cliffs! Walkers stopped to take photos and enjoy the ocean breeze, basking in the beautiful weather that we had all weekend long!  

We made our way back through Ocean Beach, passing through pit stop 3 right on the beach and back over Mission Bay Bridge into Bonita Cove for lunch. Here we celebrated being halfway through 60 miles with two decorated arches and of course our halfway dance! Our dedicated sponsors were there, Mohawk Flooring providing their pink SmartCushions to sit on, and Natura Bissé offering refreshing mists. A DJ was on site, providing us with great music and vibes as the San Diego Police Department bike cops led the way for the “Cupid Shuffle” and “Wobble” before heading out.  

The community support continued with tons of signs, live music and face paintings as we headed towards Mission Beach to walk along the boardwalk. We then headed back up towards Fanuel Park for our final pit stop of the day and prepared for the heartfelt and emotional Memorial Mile. Signs dedicated to loved ones we’ve lost to breast cancer lined the path back into camp. That evening we loaded our plates up at the 3-Day buffet and sat down for our Honor Ceremony. 

The San Diego Youth Corps began our Honor Ceremony, telling us their “why” and what urges them to commit to the 3-Day and finding the cures for breast cancer at such a young age. We then heard from three different walkers who told their stories and reminded us all why we walk and why we raise money to fight this horrible disease.  

After the Honor Ceremony, walkers enjoyed a hot chocolate bar with mugs provided by Bank of America. We warmed ourselves up and basked in the last night together in camp, enjoying 3-Day Main Street and placing our luminaria bags near the Remembrance Tent. 

Day 3 

Walkers were led out on their final day of this journey by the Ultimate San Diego 3-Day Experience winner, Gemma G.! We left camp and headed back to the Mission Beach Boardwalk and over to Belmont Park for pit stop 1 . With just over four miles in, we refueled and headed towards our first cheering station of the day, a park path lined with family, friends and members of the community holding signs and waving pom-poms. Walkers stopped to dance at this cheering station, as the Wonderbus played music and offered words of encouragement to finish strong. 

We passed Sea World and were greeted with even more community support as we headed down the riverwalk towards Old Town, home of the infamous Juan Street Hill.  

Fueled by fresh tortilla chips and tons of people motivating us at the bottom, we marched up our last big hill of the San Diego 3-Day. Once reaching the top, more refreshments and even a garden hose mister were offered to cool us down and keep us moving. 

We made our way through the neighborhood of Mission Hills before reaching our final lunch spot at Pioneer Park, taking our time to rest before hitting the final stretch of our 60-mile journey. After finishing lunch, we ventured through Hillcrest and down Balboa Park, where our final cheering station and pit stop were.  

After three days and 60 miles, walkers crossed the finish line at Waterfront Park right next to San Diego Bay. Our Finish Line Festival included pink SmartCushions and the pink carpet provided by Mohawk Flooring, medals by Bank of America, and a giant pink inflatable tunnel from Amgen.  

Our last walker crossed the finish line around 4:30 p.m., initiating the start of our Closing Ceremony. We watched as she raised the “We Will Never Give Up” flag, and welcomed in the rest of our walkers, our crew, the SDPD Bike Cops, and finally, our survivors. A slideshow highlighting great moments throughout the weekend played, and we announced that together we raised $5.3 million. We finished off the event and the end of the 2022 3-Day series with a dance party, celebrating all that we’ve accomplished in the fight against breast cancer! 

The San Diego 3-Day was a great event to wrap up our 2022 season with. A huge “thank you” goes out to the city of San Diego for allowing the Pink Bubble to take over, the local businesses and walker stalkers (local and beyond) who came out to cheer us on, and to all the walkers, crew and volunteers who participated as we fight to put an end to breast cancer. We will see you all again next year! 

60 Miles, a 60th Birthday, and Ending a 20-Year Hiatus: The Story of Rebecca W.

Rebecca and her best friend Elayne walked their first Breast Cancer 3-Day in 2000, one year before Elayne received her breast cancer diagnosis. Twenty years later, Rebecca is celebrating her 60th birthday by walking 60 miles in honor of Elayne’s life. She shares with us Elayne’s story and what she has taken away since her friend’s passing.  

How did you first become involved in the 3-Day? 

Twenty-one years ago, my dear friend Elayne and I decided to walk 60 miles over three days and raise money for research to cure breast cancer. That was our first year as part of the 3-Day family. We were training partners, tentmates, and each other’s cheerleader as we prepared and walked in Washington, D.C. on a sweltering 108-degree day in May of 2000. Elayne was amazing — crossing that finish line looking like she could do another 60 miles while I really struggled with the heat. Elayne inspired me, and I crossed the finish line with her.   

Why are you walking this year? 

I was trying to decide how I’d like to celebrate my 60th birthday this November 21st. the idea of walking with my husband by my side and my adult children there to celebrate with us, crossing the finish line after walking 60 miles on my 60th birthday in San Diego (where I was born) definitely spoke to me. I expect I will feel Elayne’s support the entire way! I’ve walked only once before, and I’m excited to walk again this year and as many years in the future as I can. 

Can you share Elayne’s story with us? 

It was within just one short year of walking with Elayne in the Breast Cancer 3-Day that she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She spent the next twenty years bravely fighting and winning round after round, all the while earning another master’s degree. She was so passionately dedicated to her new career in nursing and public health. Cancer did not define her, but her positive attitude and living life to the fullest did. Sadly, Elayne passed away earlier this year in May. Her family and so many friends joined to celebrate her life, and now I am coming full circle to honor her memory and raise money to support this most important cause of ending breast cancer. 

How do you honor Elayne during the 3-Day? 

Walking was significant in Elayne’s life! A five-mile loop around a lake near her house was where many friendships were nurtured and how lasting connections were made between Elayne and her family and closest friends. Simply walking honors my friendship with Elayne. Doing my part to raise money for research to cure cancer is how I honor her incredible life.  

If you could share a message with the Pink Bubble, what would it be? 

Live every day to the fullest;, that’s what Elayne did. Be grateful for every single day, for it is a gift. 

The significance of walking 60 miles for her 60th birthday is a special way to honor Elayne and live each day to the fullest. We will be celebrating Rebecca and all of those we walk for at the Susan G. Komen San Diego 3-Day! 

The 3-Day is more than just a walk for Marilyn, it’s a profound way for her to be of SERVICE

Continuing our “Word of the Year” series, this month Marilyn shares her story, and how the 3-Day represents a form of SERVICE to her. Marilyn’s taking her commitment to service seriously, participating in 24 3-Day events over the years, and joining us for the 3-Day this year.

Tell me about your 3-Day experience.

I started my journey in 2011 in Philadelphia knowing almost nothing about Susan G. Komen’s mission. I was simply walking 60 miles because a girlfriend asked me to walk with her. I was hooked after that first walk! Then I went on to walk in Tampa Bay with my daughter-in-law and then again and again and again…all across the country, doing numerous walks each year (in 2017, I did all 7!). I have now completed 24 3-Days. I am signed up to walk and am fully-funded for the 2021 3-Day in San Diego.

What is your 2021 word of the year?

My word for 2021 is SERVICE.

Why is that your word of the year?

I have learned over the years that my soul sings happiness when I am doing things to be of service to others. I know that when I am helping others, love and kindness spreads exponentially. For instance, I am part of a group that provides Christmas bags for 200 less fortunate women in our area each year. Naturally, it helps the women for whom we get to do this service; it also helps each of us remember how blessed we are and that we are able to joyously share our bounties. And it also is a wonderful connecting project for the women around the country who send a bounty of love and products to help fill the bags. The friends I’ve met through Komen and the 3-Day are unbelievably generous.

Also, by being a mentor to other women in the addiction community, I have the ability to see women grow and flourish and then watch them mentor others. We all give and receive constantly.

Why do you participate in the 3-Day?

I participate in the 3-Day because, as a breast cancer survivor (along with surviving facial melanoma and uterine cancer), I must give back to the community of those ahead of me who made the research possible for new and improved methods of treating this disease that saved my life and millions of others. I must be part of an organization that continues to fund researchers to find the cure, and that helps in communities across the country with the everyday struggle for people finding their way after they have heard those crushing words “You have cancer.”

What does the 3-Day family mean to you?

The women and men I have met along the way over these past 11 years have become my second heartbeat. I have never ever collectively met such a caring, loving, hilarious, energetic, service-oriented, superior group of people! My Komen friends motivate me to do more and do better. 

How does your word of the year connect to the 3-Day?

It is a blessing and an honor to do the service work of raising money for Susan G. Komen. To know that we are doing so much for so many people is awe-inspiring. To know that my grandchildren’s children may hear that their great-grandmother had breast cancer and ask, “what’s that?” is enough to keep me going long into my next decade.

By my walking these walks and walking all the training walks I do (I walked 2,020 miles in 2020 and I will do another 2,021 in 2021), more women have joined me on the 3-Day and they get to be of service. It just keeps getting better. I will admit that my age inspires younger people to get involved as they say, “Well, if she can do it, I can do it!”

If you could share a message with the Pink Bubble, what would it be?

Be kind. Be loving. Be of service. The world will become a better place and you will be part of the solution.

We want to know: How are you of SERVICE in your community? Check back next month for the next blog post in our “Word of the Year” series.