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PHILADELPHA (CBS) – Big changes are in store for the “Race for the Cure” and it’s not just a new name, it’s a whole new look. Although the look and feel of the event will change, for Susan G. Komen Philadelphia, the mission remains the same — to bring awareness to breast cancer and save lives.
For the past 28 years on Mother’s Day, thousands have gathered at the Art Museum steps for the annual Susan G. Komen Philadelphia “Race for the Cure.”
Some ran the 5k, some walked the journey, but they all came together to raise money and awareness for breast cancer research.
The sea of pink has dwindled over the years, so now Komen is taking a bold new approach to re-energize its biggest fundraiser.
“There’s so much competition in runs in the region, that there’s less and less funds being raised,” said event coordinator Fred Stein. “We’re focusing much more on camaraderie, families, [and] individuals coming together. A nice program but not lengthy.”
The survivor’s walk down the Art Museum steps, one of the most integral and emotional moments of the event, will be preserved and expanded upon.
“Instead of stopping at the bottom of the steps, they are now going to lead the tens of thousands people there, on a walk,” said Stein.
It’s a stroll that will wind its way from the Art Museum, down the Ben Franklin Parkway to Logan Circle and back to Eakins Oval — overall about a 1.2-mile round-trip trek.
“I like the change, especially knowing that the impact will be more for the community of the dollars that can be raised,” said Erika Wimms.
“We’ve seen over the last 12 years such a decrease of runners, last year there were less than 400 runners. Now, there were also 10,000 to 12,000 people walking,” said Stein.
More Than Pink will also add an interactive educational component with various healthcare professionals giving one-on-one advice and sharing research.
“We have to make this change,” said Elaine Grobman, president and CEO of Komen Philadelphia.
Grobman has spearheaded the event since 1991.
She’s embracing a new year and experience, with a renewed focus on saving lives.
“Seeing the plateau of fundraising and knowing that Komen is responsible to fund mammograms, education, treatment, research, we need to look at educating the community, that we’re not done fighting breast cancer yet,” said Grobman.
Komen Philadelphia will be the first Komen affiliate in the country to revamp its “Race for the Cure” event.
They’re hoping this will be embraced and will catch around the nation.