Getting Started at a Getting Started Meeting!

One of the first things that I recommend that everyone do after they register for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the Cure is to attend a Getting Started Meeting.  And don't just mean the newbies - I think everyone should attend, regardless of if this is your first 3 Day or 10th 3 Day.  You can always use a refresher!

Why should I attend a Getting Started Meeting?

For starters, the Getting Started meeting serves as an overview of the entire 3 Day experience, from training and fundraising to the receommended gear and outfitters to life on the event.  It's just about the only time you're going to get all of that information in one place.  This is particularly helpful if you're new to the event or if you're still on the fence about signing up.  For the more experienced participants (walkers and crew!), it's an opportunity to go over some of the things you may have forgotten from last year and to get some new ideas from your fellow participants.  The Getting Started meeting is also a great opportunity to meet some of your local coaches as well as your fellow 3 Dayers.  Who knows, you might even meet your future training partner or tent mate!  Finally, every time I've attended a Getting Started meeting, I've come away with a renewed sense of commitment and energy for the 3 Day.  I am always brimming with fresh ideas that I can't wait to put into action and I know you'll feel the same way!

What happens at a Getting Started Meeting?

Well, if you're anything like me, the first thing that will happen is that you will get lost and be late.  That's been my problem 2 of the 3 times I've attended these meetings.  But eventually, I always get there.  Here's a hint:  look for the cars with pink ribbon stickers all over them.  That's a good sign that you're in the right place!

I think I'm finally in the right place!

For the most part, these meetings generally follow the same format.  From what I remember from the one time I was on time, they usually start with having people introduce themselves and talking a little bit about what has brought everyone to the 3 Day.  The bulk of the meeting is then taken up with a somewhat lengthy slideshow that covers just about every aspect of the 3 Day that you can think of.  During the slideshow at the meeting I attended last night we hit upon:
  • How to use your Participant Center on the 3 Day website
  • Lots of fundraising tips ("Ask everyone and ask big!")
  • Various tools that are available to aid in your fundraising
  • Where the funds go that the 3 Day raises
  • How to set up a team and why it's a good idea
  • Training advice and resources
  • The various bits of "3 Day Flair" that you can collect, including Legacy Pins and Milestone Stickers
  • Information about what the crew does and how to get involved with it
  • What to expect throughout the 3 Day event, including camp life and life along the route
  • Other activities for 3 Dayers to take part in, including the 3 Day Expo and clinics
And so much more!  This walk in Boston will be my third 3 Day and I still came away with some great new ideas.  Don't be intimidated by the idea of having to sit through a long presentation.  This isn't like school.  This is about getting the information and resources that you need to accomplish this huge goal that you've set out for yourself!

In addition to the slide show, you will also get an oppotunity to watch the 3 Day informational video that will absolutely make you cry.  There is also usually extra copies of the DVD for you to have so that you can show all of your friends, family and donors exactly what this 3 Day thing is all about.

Makes me cry every time I watch it!

In addition to the DVDs, there will also be informational worksheets for you to pick up that summarize the information covered in the meeting.  The worksheets also have some personal challenges for every attendee to get started on their fundraising and training as soon as possible.


In addition to the resources that are there for you to take home, there are also books and flyers full of training and fundraising advice for you to thumb through to help you get ideas.  And if there aren't enough ideas in there for you, there is also plenty of time to ask any and all questions that you may have about the 3 Day, both during the presentation and after.

Lots of good ideas in there...

Finally, if you aren't yet registered, you will have the opportunity to sign up at the Getting Started meeting.  I can't imagine sitting through this whole meeting and not being moved to sign up right then and there!

When and where are these Getting Started Meetings?
Getting Started Meetings are held a few times a month, generally in and around the cities where the Breast Cancer 3 Day events are held.  If you are lucky enough to live in one of these cities (like me), then you can find out when your local meetings are by checking out the Calendar on the 3 Day website.  From your Participant Center, you can find links to the calendar in two places:

Clicking either of the links that I've highlighted will take you to the 3 Day Calendar.  There you can search for all of the Getting Started Meetings happening in your neck of the woods.  As of right now, there are meetings scheduled through the end of March all around the country.  And trust me, there are a lot of meetings scheduled.  Check out the calendar just for this week:


If there isn't a meeting happening near you, there is a still an option - you can attend a meeting over the phone!  I can't exactly remember why, but I have also sat in on one of these phone meetings.  The meetings aren't quite as long and you won't get to watch the video, but you'll still get all of the same information as at the in person meetings.  You will receive an email before the meeting with the handouts and you'll also have a chance to ask your questions over the phone.  You can find out when the phone meetings are taking place on the 3 Day Calendar as well (filter the meetings list to "phone meetings" only).  There are five phone meetings scheduled for the month of February:
  • February 4th at 7pm EST
  • February 9th at 9pm EST
  • February 16th at 8pm EST
  • February 18th at 8pm EST
  • February 22nd at 6pm EST
Wherever and whenever you decide to attend a meeting is totally up to you.  The important thing is that you attend one.  And remember - give yourself lots of time to get lost and look for the cars with the pink ribbon stickers on the back.  That's a tip from a Getting Started Meeting pro!


Ellie... said...

Thanks!! I've had all my friends intimidated by the fund-raising part and I've been looking for more ideas, tips and new people to meet and walk with for the SF Bay Area walk. Thanks!!

xoxo Ellie

Athena's Armoury said...

I'm going to a Getting Started meeting on Friday. I've never done the 3 Day before and like so many others am completely intimidated by the fund raising. I'm hoping that I'll be able to meet some people at the meeting and join a team!

Kristen Sager Cincotta said...

I'm glad everyone is getting to their Getting Started meetings! It really is a good place to begin to network with your fellow local 3 Dayers. Another great option for meeting people is the official training walks that the 3 Day organizes. I highly recommend checking those out as well!

Good luck!