I'm hardly a veteran 3-Dayer. I've walked twice, crewed once, and will crew again in August, but there are tons of people with many more miles and many more closing ceremonies worn into their feet. I know the 3-Day Web site offers tons of fundraising and training information (and great message boards), but there are some cool little things about the 3-Day I didn't learn until I got a little more involved. Here are a few:

The 60-Mile Men

They have a calendar. Yes, yes, they do. Each year, this Michigan-based non-profit features 12 male 3-Day participants (tastefully) not wearing much. It's funny, but they also tell you why they are walking/crewing and what effect breast cancer has had on them. Some have participated in two events; others more than 20. They sell the calendars and some apparel, and net proceeds are donated to Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure in the names of the dozen men who bared it all for the world to see.

They are currently accepting applications for the 2011 calender. According to their application:

We have only two criteria for our calendar men:
  1. You MUST have participated as a walker or crew member in at least one prior Breast Cancer 3-Day
  2. You MUST be participating in at least one 2010 Breast Cancer 3-Day.
    And if you have seen our calendar, we (obviously) don’t care what you look like.

Underground Advice

The 60 Mile Men Web site also houses The NEW Underground Guide to the Breast Cancer Walks, a 40-page digital tome filled with advice and funny stories written by a veteran walker (who also posed for the calendar as Mr. October 2009.) He reminds us: A journey of a thousand miles must still begin with a single step.

Pink Beard Barry

If you haven't experienced the 3-Day before, it probably sounds strange when I say there's a VERY GOOD chance you'll see this guy at your event. But there is. Despite the fact that thousands of people walk at their own pace and take their own time at the "Pit Stops," you'll probably bump into a lot of people more than once.

And Barry tries to be everywhere. He's walked in 55 events since 2002 for a total of more than 3,400 miles and more than $135,000 raised, according to this article. He also was the 60 Mile Men's Mr. April 2009.

He's dedicated to either walking or crewing all 15 events in 2010. To walk them all, he needs to raise at least $34,500. As of this morning, he had $2,300 of it in the bag.

We raise our shoes

I don't know if this happens at all events, but it happened in Chicago and Washington D.C. the years I was there. During closing ceremonies, when everyone is tired and achy and still pumped full of Gatorade, a circle a breast cancer survivors walks onto the platform, and everyone takes off a sweaty walking shoe to "toast" the survivors. At a time when most really don't feel like bending over to untie their laces, the crowd reminds these survivors that they walked for them. And so someday there will be a world without breast cancer.

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11 Responses
  1. Suzanne Says:

    We raised our shoes in Michigan!!

  2. susanigan's Says:

    We raised our shoes in Dallas. And you will see Barry more than once a day. I know I did.

  3. Bubba Says:

    Since they did this in Phoenix too, I'm assuming it's all of the events.

  4. Robin Says:

    We raised our shoes in Twin Cities too. Took me a good few weeks before I could describe it without choking up. Words can't describe. Thanks for sharing the tips!

  5. Amy Says:

    This will be my first 3day for Dallas..And i am so excited..

  6. Dennis Says:

    In Seattle we raise our shoes when the walkers come into the circle during closing ceremonies then we all get on one knee as the survivors come in.

    Dennis, Camp Coach

  7. Amy :) Says:

    We raise Shoes in Tampa and go down on bended knee when survivors enter the circle.

  8. Christine Says:

    I am going to be a first time walker in Philly this fall. Looking forward to experiencing all of 'this'!

  9. Anonymous Says:

    we raise our shoe in boston. such a moving experience. beyond words.

  10. Abbey Says:

    we raised our shoes in Boston in2007 too...I'm tearing up just reading about it! I <3 the 3 day!
    Boston 2007 walker
    SanDiego 2010 walker

  11. Graham Says:

    I beleave ALL events rise there shoes and it's sending chills down my spine. If this will be your first closing, walker or crew you will be moved. I need the man size tissues every time.
    AKA Mr August 2010.
    Keep the fight going. We will find the cure.