Congratulations to the 2018 Dallas/Fort-Worth 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner, Michelle Beniak

Michelle Beniak

For the 2018 Susan G. Komen 3-Day® season, we’re pleased to be continuing 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, supporting the 3-Day staff year-round at meet-ups and workshops, and in general, making a difference by building lasting relationships and showing commitment to the 3-Day in all they do.

Please join us in congratulating the 2018 Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner, Michelle Beniak.

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Michelle is a 6-year breast cancer survivor, and a 9-year 3-Day participant. This year, she is Co-Captain of team Pink Soles in Motion in Dallas/Fort Worth.

Pink Soles in Motion’s other captain, Catrina Gibson, says Michelle “is always willing to take on any task she is handed and tackles it with a smile. From planning and leading training walks, setting up shoe clinics at local retailers or manning the 3-Day booth at Race for the Cure, Michelle always gets it done.”

Coach Gayla echoes that sentiment, saying, “Michelle has been an incredible teammate for the Pink Soles in Motion team for years. She’s a survivor and has helped ME on many occasions. I’ve always been able to count on her to meet me somewhere to chat with a new participant, send people to her when looking for a team to join, man the booth at a Race for the Cure and/or More Than Pink Walk. Her positive promotion of the 3-Day inspires me and so many to get or stay involved.”

IMG_2164Michelle told us more about her 3-Day story…

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

I thought it would be a great challenge.

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

As a survivor, I feel the need to continue raising awareness and funds for finding a cure.

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

As part of a large team, we have several events throughout the year which helps a lot. In addition, finding people who work where their company matches donations has probably been the single most important “secret” to fundraising.

IMG_2167What is your best advice to anyone walking the 3-Day?

Train! If you find you still cannot walk the entire event, remember to walk out of opening ceremony, into camp/out of camp and into the closing ceremony. You won’t regret one minute!

What’s a fun fact about you? 

I have 10 grand-kids (+1 due in December) and 2 great-grand-kids!

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

Friendships can be made in mere seconds and last a lifetime. My motto is, “Strangers are family you haven’t met yet.”

 

2018 Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day Route Preview

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Lone Star State, we are coming for you! We are so excited to be heading to Dallas/Fort Worth this weekend and know that Susan G. Komen’s home city is going to be a great spot for a 60-mile walk. Event Planner Eileen Barnick has been preparing all year to make this coming weekend the best 3-Day possible, and she can’t wait to share the route with all the participants.

But she can’t share everything….

“Throughout the weekend, there will be some surprises and exciting ‘wow’ moments, but I don’t want to give those away ahead of time. They will be a surprise that I know all the participants will love. You’ll just have to walk and see!”

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For example, Day One is almost completely brand new this year! We will be starting at Tostitos Championship Plaza at The Star. This is Dallas Cowboys Headquarters, and Eileen can think of no better place to kick off the 3-Day.

“This is going to be so cool! In my unbiased opinion, it might be the best Opening Ceremony we have all year. The energy is just amazing and it’s going to be so fantastic.”

Our Opening Ceremony will take place in Frisco, which has been booming lately! As we leave the Plaza, we will be walking along the Star Boulevard. There will be lots of coffee shops along the way, so walkers can get their java fix as they leave the Opening Ceremony.

Walkers will then enter Hall Park, which is a sculpture park. It also has water sculptures, which are so cool! The first two miles of the day will have plenty of exciting sights to see and lots of opportunities for photos.

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Later, we will walk by Dr Pepper Ballpark, which is where the RoughRiders play. There will be some special surprises there, but Eileen won’t give too much away! We will also pass the Bank of America headquarters in the morning, so look out for a cheering station there.

Arbor Hills Nature Preserve will be the perfect trail to lead us into lunch at Timber Glen Park.

Pit Stop 4 on Day One will also be Pit Stop 1 on Saturday, so walkers can get nice and familiar with one of our favorite parks: Les Lacs Park in Addison. From there we will head into our cozy camp at Brookhaven College.

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The Day Two route is shorter (yay!) without losing all the beautiful spots in the suburbs around Dallas, like Farmer’s Branch and Addison. We will be walking through Addison over the course of the day, especially Addison Circle Park, which is just beautiful.

Eileen thinks everyone will love the walk on Keller Springs Road, which will take us towards lunch. And we will be arriving at lunch sooner, which is always great!

After lunch at Campbell Green Park & Recreation Center, the afternoon will take walkers through Vitruvian Park, which will have a cheering station and great photo opportunities. After a long day, friends and family (and those Bank of America massage chairs!) will be waiting at camp.23215792_10159599674780392_6172782628111656467_oDay Three on Sunday, we have left untouched and have made no real changes because we have had such positive feedback from walkers from last year.

We will begin the day with a short bus ride, dropping off at Walnut Hill Recreation Center and walk into Dallas through some gorgeous historic neighborhoods. If you love architecture and beautiful homes, you are going to have so many pretty sights to see!

After lunch, we will head into downtown Dallas and see historic sights like Dealey Plaza, the Giant Eyeball sculpture (great for photos!), the Omni and more. Eileen promises lots of photo opportunities all day long!

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The Participant Finish Area and Closing Ceremony will once again be at The Lawn at Reunion Tower. We got such great feedback on this last year, so we had to come back!

If you hang around after the Closing Ceremony as the sun sets, you might see some last bits of Dallas pink support for us, too! It will be the perfect finish to an amazing 3-Day weekend.

 

Favorite 3-Day Fundraising Crafts

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March is National Craft Month, which makes it the perfect time to get creative with your fundraising game! Whether you consider yourself crafty or not, there are plenty of simple crafts you can try to help hit your next fundraising goal. We tapped our coaches, local teams and social media to find our favorite 3-Day fundraising crafts right now.

Hines Panthers

Appeal to peoples’ sweet tooth! Janice, the Captain of Hines Pink Pathers, starts with Oreo cookies, then decorates and packages them in seasonal fun! These little guys are all set for Easter but you can also make even simpler versions patterned after suns, smiley faces or flowers!

Coach Marianne loved when she saw “Pinking of You Care Packages” from some of her San Diego walkers. Send small packages – all in pink of course! – to let past donors you appreciate their support…and could use some more this year! Ideas to include: pink bead necklaces, a homemade bookmark and/or card, magnets or candies.

mitts for tits

Dawn from Team STRIDE has been flexing her knitting needles as she gets ready to walk in Seattle in 2018. Follow Dawn’s example, and ask your family and friends for their preferred colors or theme, then knit them some fun 3-Day mitts! These are perfect for the next few weeks of training walks while we wait for spring weather to really kick in!

Coach Liz has loved when her Dallas/Fort Worth walkers have decorated stones to make fun, pink 3-Day paper weights as a fundraising tool! She even plans on using this idea for her own fundraising for the San Diego 3-Day this year! She also loves to send decorated coasters as thank yous to her donors.

If you want a little variety, Beth from Michigan’s BC Babes does it all! She uses card making, makes chocolate covered pretzels and cookies and even created homemade candy for her fundraising efforts!

Our coaches also love Painting with a Twist, a nationwide business that offers fundraising opportunities at fun, artistic events. Participants in the Midwest have used this to great effect! If you find a location nearby, select a date and work with them to plan a class for your friends and family. A portion of the proceeds from the evening can go to your 3-Day team or personal goals!

What are some of your favorite fundraising crafts? Share with us!