FRAMINGHAM, MA- The Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure is a 60-mile walk to fund breast cancer research and support local community education, screening and treatment programs.
This year (2011) the Boston 3-Day is July 22nd, 23rd and 24th, and the Opening Ceremony and starting point for the Boston walk is again at Farm Pond in Framingham!
The Boston 3-Day begins Friday morning, July 22, 2011. Crew members should arrive at 4:00 a.m., walkers should arrive between 5:00 a.m. - 6:00 a.m., and the Opening Ceremony, which begins with community stretching is at 6:30 a.m.
I had a chance to speak with Dr. Sheri Phillips, this year's National Spokesperson for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure organization.
At the start of the interview, I said "I'll ask some questions, and if any are too personal, or you prefer not to answer, or want me to leave anything out -- let me know."
Sheri, the Homewood, Illinois mother of two teenage daughters, and a practicing physician for the past 18 years who is now a 2-year survivor of breast cancer said, "None of it is too personal. Information is power. It's important to get as much information as possible out to others and raise awareness not only with those who have been diagnosed with breast cancer, but the general public as well."
Diagnosed in 2008 with Stage II A Invasive Ductal Carcinoma of the right breast, Phillips underwent a partial mastectomy, a lymph node dissection, 15 rounds of chemotherapy, 33 rounds of radiation and was left with clinically disabling lymphedema of her right arm and hand leaving her unable to provide direct care to her own patients.
Finding herself partially disabled, but positive and upbeat, when she heard the 3-Day organization was looking for a national spokesperson, Phillips applied.
After submitting a questionnaire, making an audition video of herself, and completing an in-person interview where she had the opportunity to speak about her experiences doing the walk last year, Sarah Ferguson, (who was involved with those who made the selection), said, "Sheri wowed everyone!"
Coupled with her medical background and personal experience with the disease, Sheri Phillips is an eloquent, sensitive and personable speaker. Instead of feeling self-pity, she said "My diagnoses of breast cancer, and treatment of such has changed me completely. These last two years have re-energized me and re-focused the direction of my life.", she added -- "It has become a new purpose for my life; To share my story and make a difference in the lives of people around me to as great an extent as possible and to the world at large."
On July 22nd, Sheri will give the opening address to participants, families and supporters in the Boston 3-Day Opening Ceremony at Farm Pond in Framingham.
According to Phillips, "The Opening Ceremony is a time for Reflection, (of each participant's personal situation), Remembrance, (of those who have lost their lives to breast cancer), Honor, (for those who have fought the disease) and Motivation (to continue the fight and to find a cure)."
Not only can she "talk the talk", but she will "walk the walk" -- and in-fact plans to do all 14 of the 60-mile walks held in the United States this year! Phillips added, the 3-Day Opening Ceremony is not just for participants -- it's a time and place for friends, family and the people of Framingham give the walkers a send-off with smiles and words of encouragement.
After the ceremony, participants will begin the 3-day, 60-mile journey, walking 19 to 22 miles each day.
Getting to Farm Pond in Framingham, MA
Driving to Framingham: The Boston 3-Day for the Cure Opening Ceremony will be held at Farm Pond, 100 Dudley Rd., Framingham, MA, on the western side of the pond.
Several major highways lead to or pass through Framingham, (Rt. 9, Rt. 30, Rt. 495, Rt. 128 and Rt. 135). In addition, Framingham has (2) MassPike exits, (Exit 12 and Exit 13).
From Boston: take MassPike west to Exit 12 or Exit 13 and follow signs to Rt. 9, (see local directions below). Alternatively, you can take Rt. 9 or Rt. 30 west all the way from Boston, (Rt. 30 will merge into Rt. 9 just past Rt. 126 / Concord St).
From Western MA: take MassPike east to Exit 12 or Exit 13 and follow signs to Rt. 9, (see local directions below).
From the MA North Shore: Take Rt. 128 to Rt. 9 west, or take Rt. 495 south to Rt. 9 east, (see local directions below).
From the MA South Shore: Take Rt. 128 to Rt. 9 west, or take Rt. 495 north to Rt. 9 east, (see local directions below).
- Local (Framingham) Driving Directions to Participant Drop-off:
- From Route 135/Waverly Street - turn right onto Winter Street and proceed for approximately 0.2 miles. Turn right into the Joseph P. Keefe Technical School (750 Winter Street, Framingham, MA 01702) for participant drop-off. From here, Participants will follow walking route to Opening Ceremony site.
- From Route 9/Worcester Road - Take the Framingham Centre exit off Rt. 9, (at Framingham State University / Edgell Rd.), and head south on Edgell Rd/Main St for 0.2 mi, Turn right onto Franklin St and contiue 0.6 mi, Turn right onto Mt Wayte Ave. and continue approx 0.6 mi, (NOTE: Mt. Wayte Ave becomes Dudley Rd), turn right onto Dr Harvey Cushing Way, follow to end, and turn left onto Winter St, and proceed for approximately 0.8 miles, Turn left into the Joseph P. Keefe Technical School (750 Winter Street, Framingham, MA 01702) for participant drop-off. From here, Participants will follow walking route to Opening Ceremony site.
- Local (Framingham) Driving Directions to Spectator Parking:
- From Route 135/Waverly Street - turn right onto Winter Street and proceed for approximately .9 miles. Turn right onto Dr. Harvey Cushing Way. Turn right into the parking lot for Summerville at Farm Pond.
- From Route 9/Worcester Road - Take the Framingham Centre exit off Rt. 9 (at Framingham State University / Edgell Rd.), and head south on Edgell Rd/Main St for 0.2 mi, Turn right onto Franklin St and contiue 0.6 mi, Turn right onto Mt Wayte Ave. and continue approx 0.6 mi, (NOTE: Mt. Wayte Ave becomes Dudley Rd), turn right onto Dr Harvey Cushing Way. Turn left into parking lot for Summerville at Farm Pond.
- Parking will not be permitted at Barbieri School across the street from Farm Pond.
- It's helpful to know that locally, in Framingham, Rt. 9 is "Worcester Rd.", Rt. 135 is "Waverley St.", Rt. 30 is "Cochituate Rd." and Rt. 126 is "Concord St." and/or "Hollis St."
- When discussing local Framingham directions, "Framingham Centre" is not the same area of town as "Downtown Framingham".
Taking the Train to Framingham: The Framingham Amtrak & Framingham MBTA Commuter Rail Train Station is located at 417 Waverley St. in Downtown Framingham, approx 1 mile from Farm Pond. The Fountain Street Bridge is closed for construction, so those walking or driving from the train station should follow Waverley St. approx 1 mile west to the Winter Street Bridge, (use same Rt. 135/Waverly St. driving directions as listed above)
Framingham Area Hotels: Those destined for the Framingham Sheraton Hotel will find it located near MassPike Exit 12. The (Natick) Crowne Plaza, the Framingham Red Roof Inn, and other Rt. 9 / Framingham hotels are closer to Exit 13. (Find more Framingham Hotels).
Shopping & Dining in Framingham: Those arriving earlier than the morning of July 22nd, can find numerous shopping areas, restaurants, recreational facilities and activities in Framingham. There is a major regional shopping area which includes Shoppers World, The Natick Collection and several other stores along Rt. 9 near MassPike Exit 13. If you're looking for something specific, you can search the Framingham Business Directory for shoe stores, clothing stores, pharmacies, restaurants and other local business - each listing contains a local Google map.
Medical Attention: For anyone needing emergency medical attention, the MetroWest Medical Center, (a major regional hospital), is located on Lincoln St., off Union Ave. in Framingham, (approx. 1 mile from the Farm Pond opening ceremony site).
Farm Pond - A History of Changing People's Lives
On July 4th 1854, at an abolitionist meeting at Harmony Grove on the banks of Farm Pond, Henry David Thoreau gave a speech against slavery in Massachusetts and William Lloyd Garrison, protesting that the U.S. Constitution permitted slavery, burned a copy of nation's founding document.
From the 1874 through 1919, the New England Chautauqua assembled on Mount Wayte at the northern end of Farm Pond. The cottages, outdoor pavilion and camp grounds grew from a summer retreat for training Sunday-School teachers to a small utopian community where teachers and preachers, entertainers and musicians, families and friends would enjoy the outdoor setting around the pond and the educational, cultural and spiritual activities Chautauqua offered.
In 1944, the U.S. Army opened the Cushing Hospital on the west side of Farm Pond as a centralized facility for treating New England soldiers wounded during World War II. The hospital, named for Dr. Harvey Cushing, a pioneer in neurosurgery, has since been razed -- except for the Cushing Chapel which has been restored and is still used for Veterans Day observances and can be rented for special occasions.
In the year 2000, the Cushing Hospital grounds were rededicated as "Tercentennial Park" and the property was host to a celebration of the Town of Framingham's 300th anniversary. Framingham is one of the oldest and largest towns in the USA with a representative Town Meeting form of government.
In 2007, Tercentennial Park was again rededicated as "Cushing Memorial Park". The park includes walking and jogging paths, a 9/11 Memorial, the Academy Building, (used for indoor meetings and activities), the Cushing Chapel and large grassy areas and benches to sit and reflect or commune. On the opposite side of Dudley Rd., most of the land along the west side of Farm Pond is open, recreational public space.
For the past five years, the Boston 3-Day for the Cure has held its Opening Ceremony at Farm Pond, and 2011 will be the sixth.
Hope, education, healing and community -- all are forever tied to history of the Farm Pond.
The First Leg of a 3-Day Journey
Upon leaving Farm Pond, teams, registered walkers and Boston 3-Day for the Cure crew members will make their way southeast and onto Waverly Street, (Rt. 135), and head towards Wellesly, MA.
From 8:30 to 11:30a.m. an official "Public Cheering Station" will be located at St. Paul’s Church, 502 Washington St., (which is Rt. 135 in Wellesley). St. Paul's is at the intersection of Rt. 135 and Rt. 16 in Wellesley Square, (by Morton Park and Simons Park).
"Komen 3-Day for the Cure participants invest a lot of time and energy into their three-day, 60-mile journey," said Norm Bowling, project manager for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure. "We often hear from participants how grateful they are for the community support they receive while on-event and what a difference it makes."
Friends, family and the general public are encouraged to come to Wellesley to cheer on and support the walkers.
3-Day for the Cure Resources:
- Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure (official website) - The3Day.org
- Follow the 3-Day on Twitter - www.twitter.com/the3day
- 3-Day for the Cure on Facebook - www.facebook.com/3dayforthecure
- Dr. Sheri Phillips on Facebook - www.facebook.com/DrSheriPhillips
BOSTON 3-Day for the Cure Resources:
The Boston 3-Day for the Cure is the first in the series of (14) "3-Day for the Cure" walks which will take place across the United States in 2011.
While many hope the 3-Day for the Cure continues to start in Framingham -- many more hope the need for the walks end, and a preventative cure for breast cancer is found.