Philadelphia Coaches’ Favorite 3-Day Memories

happy jwalkers

We are just days away from the 2017 Philadelphia 3-Day, and the excitement is building in the City of Brotherly Love! That excitement is especially pouring out of our coaches; Tisho, Joanne and Emily can’t wait to host all this year’s walkers. They are sharing that enthusiasm with us by remembering 3-Days past, revealing their favorite spots along the route and in their city.

2013 Philly Pit One Pajama Party

What are your favorite memories of the Philadelphia 3-Days past?

Coach Tisho: In 2011, it was the first year I walked Philly and my husband’s first year on the Route Safety Crew Team. We didn’t know a soul there and I hadn’t joined a team yet so we went to dinner on Thursday night with a bunch of the Route Safety crew members he’d met at his crew kick-off meeting. They were the most welcoming bunch. The entire walk I would see them at intersections and they would say “Hey it’s Stu’s Wife!” Total embodiment of City of Brotherly Love. We’re still friends with almost all those crew members.

And then also, cheering the walkers in at the Participant Finish Area last year (my first year as a Philly Coach). Such fun to see people I had been working with all season complete their walk!

Coach Emily: I loved the 150th event celebration last year, and I love seeing familiar faces out on the route!

2016 coaches (2)

What are your favorite spots on the route this year?

Tisho: I love all the cute towns we walk through – Ardmore and Chestnut Hill are the first two that come to mind. Great little villages that really welcome our walkers.

Emily: I love walking through Chestnut Hill and walking along the Schuylkill River.

Coach Joanne: You can’t help but love boathouse row and the Rocky steps. But I do love going past Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. It just evokes images of days gone by.

What can 20-mile walkers look forward to especially?

Joanne: I think joining the 3-Day as a 20-mile walker is an awesome stepping stone to a full 3-Day experience. Being able to come to camp Saturday night and then walk into the Closing Ceremony should and hopefully will inspire the walkers to sign up right there and then for the whole shebang!

2012 DC with Liz

Tell us a great Crew memory!

Tisho: The first year that I crewed in Philly (2013) I was the captain for Pit Stop 1. All but one member of our crew was completely new and we had no idea what we were doing but we had such a fun time! And I’m proud to say were highly successful in putting on one heck of a Pit One Pajama Party!

In 2012 I crewed my first 3-Day in DC. My cousin Liz, who was 12 (and just 7 when we lost her mom, my Aunt Barbara, to breast cancer) was on the Youth Corps. She loved every minute of it and we had the most magical bonding experience that weekend. I was asked to carry the Aunt flag at the Opening and Closing Ceremonies and at Closing we could bring one person on stage to join us and Liz came out with me. I’ve shed a lot of tears at the 3-Day but never as many as I did on that stage. Seeing my brave girl in front of all those people, honoring the memory of her mother. It fills me with pride just thinking about it.

Joanne: I was the co-captain in 2008 of Pit Stop 3. Boy was that an eye opener! When you’re a walker, you just take for granted that the western shelters magically appear and that the water and Gatorade fill themselves up in the containers! But the best part of that day was getting some Mummers to come out and do some photo ops with us. I will never forget it.

jwalker shirts

What are you looking forward to most for this year’s walk?

Tisho: The new route! There are so many exciting changes and new venues! And I really love that we are bringing our awareness message to a whole new set of communities. Awareness is such a critical part of this event.

Joanne: This year we have three brand new routes and I’m most curious for the feedback! I think Melanie (on our production staff) did a bang-up job creating a wonderful experience for our walkers and crew and I hope they’re as excited about it as I am!


What are your favorite spots in Philly to eat, visit and play?

Joanne: If you get a chance, go to Villa di Roma on 9th Street. Awesome Italian restaurant (obviously). Also, if you love chocolate, don’t miss Max Brenner’s. That’s in Center City not far from City Hall!

Tisho: I love all kinds of food so Reading Terminal Market is like heaven to me!

What are your favorite memories from Philadelphia 3-Days past? What are you looking forward to most for this year? Tell us in the comments!



Belly Dancing for Breast Cancer


Shilpa, Swati, and Ritu sport their dancing gear for Day 1 of the Philadelphia 3-Day

On the Susan G. Komen 3-Day, fashion is everything. Pink is obvious, but anything that complements pink can work. Actually, anything goes on the 3-Day. What caught my eye was a great little accessory on each of three women at Pit Stop 1 on the Philadelphia 3-Day.

A well-crafted hip scarf.

Not just any hip scarf, mind you. Handmade, shiny hip scarfs with plenty of bangles. Shilpa, Ritu, and Swati are friends living in the Philadelphia area who decided to walk 60 miles in October with the Komen 3-Day to raise funds to help end breast cancer. The three are all Information Technology professionals in the area, brought together by common friends and family. “My mother is a breast cancer survivor in India,” said Shilpa. “She is doing fine now, but I just wanted to get out and do something about it.” Swati and Ritu were friends from college and had been challenging each other with half marathons.

Shilpa, Ritu, and Swati hit the Philadelphia streets on Day 3 of 60 miles to find a cure for breast cancer

Shilpa, Ritu, and Swati hit the Philadelphia streets on Day 3 of 60 miles

Swati mentioned that their families had been really supportive of this long journey through the streets of Philadelphia. “My husband brought us drinks on the route on Day 1!” she beamed. “We’ve named him the MVH for now. The Most Valuable Husband! We’ll see if another husband can overtake him!” Evidently, they were looking to compete, as the women were expecting some awesome homemade food for lunch from these gentlemen on Day 2.

The girls leave goals on the Inspiration Board

The women leave goals on the Inspiration Board at Opening Ceremony

And how did a group of three first-time walkers raise $2300 a piece for breast cancer? They made their world-famous hip scarves, of course. Oh, and then held a well-attended belly dancing class in Exton, Pennsylvania, complete with Mediterranean food. Sixty women participated in all, a raging success for these fun, innovative first-timers.

Can’t wait to see what they come up with next. They will be rolling into the Navy Yard today with over 1,200 participants and over 300 volunteers to help find a cure for breast cancer. Cheer them on!

The women leave the Convention Center on Day 3 ready to walk the last 20 miles

The women leave the Convention Center on Day 3 ready to walk the last 20 miles

“I’ll Help Anywhere”

Brad is flanked by family and flag bears at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

Brad is flanked by flag bearers at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

‘Are you comfortable with a walkie talkie?’ read the first email. Brad T replied, ‘Yes’ to that email. ‘Can you drive a large box truck?’ Again he replied ‘Yes.’ He realized that the first two emails were blanket emails to his volunteer ‘Crew’ on the Susan G. Komen Philadelphia 3-Day in 2012. The next email was only to him: ‘Would you be the Captain of your crew?’

He laughed and accepted. “I was on the ‘I’ll Help Anywhere’ Crew and ended up on Grab and Go B, a small pit stop supporting over a thousand Susan G. Komen 3-Day® walkers on their 60-mile journey to raise research money for breast cancer. Brad, a tax guy by day, dons a pink shirt and a pink baseball cap for the event, hardly the attire of his usual working life. Brad’s story, however, is personal and can bring tears in a moment.

Brad T carries the flag "My Wife" in honor of Sabrina, who passed away from breast cancer

Brad T carries the flag “My Wife” in honor of Sabrina, who passed away from breast cancer

His wife and mother of his four children, Sabrina, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2007. “We were married for 32 years,” said Brad at Pit Stop 1 on Saturday. “We met in southern California in 1979; both of us were there for work. We were married in the church we met in!” Brad first was a volunteer at the breast cancer fundraising event in 2010, helping on the Sunday when the walkers and regular crew members celebrate at the end of their 60-mile journey. “I wanted to walk in 2011, but Sabrina was just too sick,” mentions Brad. Sabrina passed away in May of 2012. “I’m excited to walk this year for the first time and carry the flag in her honor.” Several individuals are asked to represent their loved ones in the Opening and Closing Ceremonies with flags. Brad is carrying one that reads: “My Wife.”

Brad T honors his wife Sabrina at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

Brad T honors his wife Sabrina at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

Amazingly, this has been a banner for the entire family. His older daughter and his youngest son are walking with him. His younger daughter joined the Young Women Walking (YW2) group, which supports girls and guys 16-23 in one day of a Komen 3-Day®. They still raise at least $750, and they walk the entire 20+ miles on Day 2 of the route. “In all, our goal was well over $6900,” says Brad, “but we raised over $10,000 together.” This dedication and commitment to the cause is always inspiring. What a team! Give a shoutout to Brad and his family this weekend on their first 3-Day as walkers!

Brad, family, and friends celebrate the end of Day 1 on the Philadelphia 3-Day

Brad, family, and friends celebrate the end of Day 1 on the Philadelphia 3-Day